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Malnutrition

Malnutrition

Description

Malnutrition has generally been regarded as synonymous with food shortage, especially lack of protein (Kwashiorkor). However, it may also be applied to a food surplus and a shortage of essential nutrients. Literally, it simply means: "bad" nutrition.

Causes

A host of socio-economic reasons may be listed for the endemic starvation in many Third World countries of Africa and Asia. Infants and children are most vulnerable and may suffer retarded growth and a short lifespan.

Signs & Symptoms

A severe form of protein and calorie malnutrition is termed marasmus: occurring during famines. Children are stunted, emaciated, mentally retarded and prone to infection and disease.

Kwashiorkor is derived from a Ghanaian word meaning "dislodged from the breast". The available diet is inadequate and reserves from breast milk do not last long given the rapid growth between 1 and 3 years of age.

Superficially, the children may appear to be fat because they have a puffy appearance, which is actually due to edema (accumulation of fluid in the tissues).

Nutritional Supplements

Structure & Function: Multi Vitamin/Multi Mineral Formulas

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General Supplements
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Bioflavonoids*
Digestive Enzymes*
EPO*
Vitamin B Complex100 mg
Vitamin C3,000 mg
Vitamin E600 IU
Zinc80 mg



*Please refer to the respective topic for specific nutrient amounts.

Note: All amounts are in addition to those supplements having a Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA). Due to individual needs, one must always be aware of a possible undetermined effect when taking nutritional supplements. If any disturbances from the use of a particular supplement should occur, stop its use immediately and seek the care of a qualified health care professional.

Dietary Considerations

Malnutrition mostly occurs in cases of socioeconomic deprivation so recommending foods is an exercise in futility.

Homeopathic Remedy

Ferrum metallicum(anemic?)


Natrum carbonicum
Natrum Muriaticum
Nux vomica
Phosphoricum acidum

Treatment Schedule

Over-the-counter homeopathic remedies may be single strength (of fairly weak potency e.g. 6X ) or a blend of several weaker strengths (6X, 8X, 10X).

This may comprise a single remedy, or several remedies.

Doses are administered on a 3 times daily (tid), between meals,schedule and continued for 3 days.

Liquid preparations usually use 8-10 drops per dose.

Solid preparations are usually 2 or 3 pellets per dose.

Children use 1/2 dose i.e. 1 pellet.

If there is aggravation of the symptoms, stop taking the remedy and consult a homeopath.

References

Murphy, R. : Homeopathic Medical Repertory. Hahneman Academy, Pagosa Springs, Colorado. 1993.

Murphy, R. : Lotus Materia Medica. Hahneman Academy, Pagosa Springs, Colorado. 1995.

Pert, J.C.: Homeopathy for the Family. The Homoeopathic Development Foundation, London. 1985 edition.

Herbal Approaches

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Herbs
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Alfalfa
Amino Acid Complex
Blessed Thistle
Caraway
Cayenne (Capsicum)
Celery
Dill
Fennel
Fenugreek
Ginseng
Hyssop

Note: The misdirected use of an herb can produce severely adverse effects, especially in combination with prescription drugs. This Herbal information is for educational purposes and is not intended as a replacement for medical advice.

Aromatherapy - Essential Oils

The digestive process begins with the sense of smell!

Recommended essential oils include:

Fennel Essence,Hyssop Essence.

Related Health Conditions

Anorexia Nervosa
Bulimia Nervosa
Underweight

Abstracts

References

Almeida SS et al., Malnutrition and reactivity to drugs acting in the central nervous system. Neurosci Biobehav Rev, 1996 Autumn, 20:3, 389-402.

Babameto G & Kotler DP: Malnutrition in HIV infection. Gastroenterol Clin North Am, 1997 Jun, 26:2, 393-415.

Cano-N: [Role of hepatocellular insufficiency and kidney failure on nutritional management] Ann-Fr-Anesth-Reanim. 1995; 14 Suppl 2: 107-11.

Cheskin LJ et al., Improved detection of malnutrition by medical housestaff following focused-teaching intervention. J Gen Intern Med, 1996 Sep, 11:9, 548-50.

Chima CS et al., Relationship of nutritional status to length of stay, hospital costs, and discharge status of patients hospitalized in the medicine service. J Am Diet Assoc, 1997 Sep, 97:9, 975-8; quiz 979-80.

Darnton-Hill I: Developing industrial-governmental-academic partnerships to address micronutrient malnutrition. Nutr Rev, 1997 Mar, 55:3, 76-81.

Ferro-Luzzi A & James WP: Adult malnutrition: simple assessment techniques for use in emergencies. Br J Nutr, 1996 Jan, 75:1, 3-10.

Gallagher-Allred CR et al., Malnutrition and clinical outcomes: the case for medical nutrition therapy. J Am Diet Assoc, 1996 Apr, 96:4, 361-6, 369; quiz 367-8.

Giner M et al., In 1995 a correlation between malnutrition and poor outcome in critically ill patients still exists [see comments]. Nutrition, 1996 Jan, 12:1, 23-9.

Levraut-J et al: [Effect of postoperative complications on nutritional status: therapeutic consequences]. Ann-Fr-Anesth-Reanim. 1995; 14 Suppl 2: 66-74.

Loguercio C et al., Nutritional status and survival of patients with liver cirrhosis: anthropometric evaluation. Minerva Gastroenterol Dietol, 1996 Jun, 42:2, 57-60.

Maiani G & D'Amicis A: Vitamin nutritional status in Italy. Eur J Cancer Prev, 1997 Mar, 6 Suppl 1:, S3-9.

Maklebust-J & Magnan-MA: Risk factors associated with having a pressure ulcer: a secondary data analysis. Adv-Wound-Care. 1994 Nov; 7(6): 25, 27-8, 31-4 passim.

Melchior-JC : [How to assess preoperative nutritional status?]. Ann. Fr. Anesth. Reanim. 1995; 14 Suppl 2: 19-26.

Naber TH et al., Specificity of indexes of malnutrition when applied to apparently healthy people: the effect of age. Am J Clin Nutr, 1997 Jun, 65:6, 1721-5.

Reynolds JV et al., Impaired gut barrier function in malnourished patients. Br J Surg, 1996 Sep, 83:9, 1288-91.

Vieira MJ et al., Preoperative assessment in cases of adult megacolon suffering from moderate malnutrition. Nutrition, 1996 Jul-Aug, 12:7-8, 491-5.

Zawada ET Jr: Malnutrition in the elderly. Is it simply a matter of not eating enough? Postgrad Med, 1996 Jul, 100:1, 207-8, 211-4, 220-2 passim.