Under weight individuals who are more than 10% below the established standards of weight are vulnerable and susceptible to a number of diseases. Tuberculosis and acute infectious diseases are few of the deadly aspects that can complicate the health of underweight patients. People who eat little for long hours and have a low BMI rate are also susceptible to heath concerns.
MAIN CAUSES OF UNDER WEIGHT:
Being under weight could be due to a number of reasons – psychological or pathological, depending on the patient.
Pathological conditions- such as fevers, gatrointestinal disturbances, where the digestion & absorption capacities are decreased & also in Hyperthyroidism
Genetic Predisposition- weight of an individual is inherited
Diet recommended for low or underweight patients:
High calorie, high protein, high healthy fat diet with liberal vitamin intake is recommended.
-Energy – A gradual increase of additional 500Kcal is recommended.
-Protein- In place of 1 gm of protein, over 1.2 gm per kg is recommended. Good quality protein should be added. Legumes & whole pulses, cottage cheese, soyabean, soya nuggets, soya milk, peas, lobia, rajmah & tofu.
-Fats- Easily digested fats are included. Fried & fatty foods are not recommended as they may cause diarrhoea. High calorie fatty foods such as cream, butter, margarine and oils help to increase the weight.
-Carbohydrates- Liberal amount of easy to digest carbohydrates should be
included in the diet. Dietary fibre should be minimised, include more high calorie vegtables like potatoes, colocasia, yam. All cereals provide about 55-65% of total kilo calories.
-Calcium-Rich foods: Dairy products like skim milk, curd, low fat paneer & buttermilk, green leafy veg like spinach, fenugreek ( methi), whole cereals specially ragi, pulse like moong, chana, sprouted pulses, soyamilk, soyabeans, tofu, soya granules & nuggets.
-Iron-Rich Foods: Increase fortified cereals, fish, chicken, egg , dried fruits like apricots, almonds, raisins, soyabean, tofu, kidney beans, baked beans, spinach, curry leaves, broccoli. Also increase Vitamin C as it helps in absorption of Iron, avoid consumption of tea / coffee especially after meals & also have a glass of orange / lemon juice along with meals.