While experts claim neither dieting nor force-feeding is likely to help people recuperate faster when sick, they may find themselves straying from regular eating habits when they’re not feeling well.
In fact, research shows that loss of appetite is a proven symptom of a number of illnesses. But why does it happen and how do some people still eat enough to fuel for recovery?
“When we’re sick or ill from many different conditions, our bodies mount a complex inflammatory response,” Dr. Donald Hensrud explains in an email. “… which have a wide range of effects and are partly responsible for the decreased appetite.”
He indicates that depending on the illness, hormonal changes may also play a role.
Sick and loss of appetite
Some people find themselves impaired with smell and taste, which becomes a factor that affects eating habits. When things don’t taste or smell delicious, there’s a natural reaction to not eat the food.
Loss of appetite may discourage viruses from growing more. Dr Hensrud says eating less may decrease certain substances where viruses feed on.