A person is underweight when he is 10 percent or more of the desired weight for his body size and build, underweight develops when more calories ar
A person is underweight when he is 10 percent or more of the desired weight for his body size and build, underweight develops when more calories are utilized by the body that is consumed.
Underweight without a lack of nutrients may or may not be serious, depending upon the degree of underweight. The thin person is probably less apt to suffer from heart diseases and certain other ailments and will live longer than a person who is overweight. Malnutrition occurs when an individual is deficient in the nutrients necessary for life. Individuals with this problem are very susceptible to infections, lack nutrient reserves for times of stress, and are easily fatigued. When underweight and malnutrition are severe, there is starvation, the body’s stores of nutrients and fat are depleted, and muscle tissue is broken down to provide energy for bodily functions.
Symptoms that may accompany underweight are a weakness, fatigue, sensitivity to cold, hunger, dizziness, and loss of ambition. Underweight may be due to poor eating habits, a nervous condition, overactivity, illness, or metabolic and heredity problems. Underweight can be corrected by removal of the underlying causes and improvement of the diet. The diet should be well-balanced and higher in calories, Extra protein is needed to rebuild tissues. Frequent smaller feedings may be of help in weight gain. Exercise is important for weight gain, so that muscles, rather than fat, are formed. For the same reason, weight should not be gained at the rate of more than a pound a week. Any vitamin deficiencies should be corrected as quickly as possible.