Many people want to lose weight – and with good reason, because obesity not only damages our joints, but also increases the risk of various serious diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure or heart attack. A change in diet and exercise usually ensure that the kilos tumble. However, anyone who suddenly and unintentionally loses weight for no apparent reason will get a shock at first. In this case, it is important to see a doctor to get to the bottom of the cause – because weight loss is usually a sign that something is wrong in the body. For example, a food intolerance, a nutrient deficiency or the use of certain medications can be behind it – but serious illnesses can also be hidden behind the symptom.
Weight loss as a sign of disease
Weight loss as a sign of infectious diseases
Chronic infections such as tuberculosis (TB) or HIV infection lead to decreased appetite, among other symptoms, which can be associated with weight loss. The HI virus damages the immune system and becomes noticeable around two to four weeks after infection with symptoms such as fever, tiredness, exhaustion, night sweats, diarrhea, muscle pain and swollen lymph nodes. TB usually occurs in chronically ill people or people with a weakened immune system and primarily affects the lungs. The possible symptoms are similar to those of an HIV infection.
Weight loss as a sign of an overactive thyroid
The thyroid gland is involved in many processes in our body, which is why a disorder can manifest itself through various symptoms. In case of a hyperthyroidism The thyroid produces too many hormones, which causes many bodily functions to run faster. In addition to weight loss, symptoms such as a rapid pulse, excessive sweating, trembling hands, increased blood pressure, sleep disorders, frequent bowel movements, as well as inner restlessness and nervousness can occur in this way.
Weight loss as a sign of inflammatory bowel disease
The term inflammatory bowel disease describes diseases such as Crohn’s Disease or Colitis Ulcerosa, which causes inflammation in the gastrointestinal tract again and again, which can cause symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, fever, exhaustion and weight loss. The latter is favored by the frequent diarrhea and the associated loss of fluids and the nutrient deficiencies that result.
Weight loss as a sign of cancer
Another cause of weight loss can be various cancers. Weight loss is one of the first symptoms that can occur, especially with tumors in the intestines, lungs and kidneys. This is because the tumor in question robs the body of nutrients as it grows. Other symptoms that can indicate cancer are fever, night sweats, tiredness, lumps in the body that can be felt, headaches, paleness or other skin changes and bleeding – eg blood in the stool.
Other diseases that can cause weight loss
- Diabetes Typ 1
- eating disorder
- kidney failure
- liver cirrhosis
- lung disease
- Depression and other mental illnesses
Go to the doctor if you lose weight
Rarely, a (minor) weight loss can also be triggered by professional or private stress or a severe flu. However, if you suffer from poor appetite for a long period of time and are losing weight as a result, you should investigate the cause always get medical clarification. Especially if there are additional symptoms such as night sweats, fever, cough, shortness of breath, shortness of breath, digestive problems or weakness.