12 Symptoms of Malnutrition

By Maria Fernanda Pereira Ywazaki on July 23, 2014

Starting a life away from home is a big change for many college students.  We have to start taking care of ourselves, go to classes, complete assignments, and still have time for social interactions.  Learning to balance all of these things can be tricky, and sometimes we find ourselves neglecting one or two.  One of the harder things in college is maintaining a healthy diet because we don’t know how to prepare meals, laziness, or lack of time.  Some of us may gain or lose weight for not eating the appropriate food but no other major consequences.  Other times, we may actually be facing symptoms that should concern us and require action.

Here are a few symptoms for malnutrition that you should be aware of:

  1. Losing 10% of your weight in a span of three months without any diets.
  2. Fatigue and weak muscles
  3. All-day lack of energy
  4. Small wounds taking a longer time to heal
  5. Dry/flaky skin and dry hair (like straw)
  6. Irritability and dizziness
  7. Longterm constipation or diarrhoea
  8. Anemia (lack of energy or dizziness are symptoms for this)
  9. Buzzing/ringing in the ears (tinnitus)
  10. Breathlessness
  11. Difficulty seeing at night or in areas that have a dim light
  12. Swollen tongue

These are but a few symptoms of malnutrition, and with everything concerning the body, these could be symptoms for something else entirely–which sometimes it could be worse. The symptoms will not always present themselves, and most likely not one person will present all symptoms. Nevertheless, being aware of your body is quite important. Also, just because we are eating the “correct,” “normal,” or “usual” quantity–for each person is different and should be compared to the before/after of oneself instead of comparing it to others–doesn’t mean that it is the right quality.

I know it can be tricky and a pain, but if its accomplished you’d probably be happy with the results. Especially if you had slight symptoms but weren’t aware of them and suddenly start feeling like Wonderwoman or Superman–or just plain cheery.

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