Our Gastroenterology Blog

Posts for: November, 2022

By Advanced Gastroenterology Group
November 23, 2022
Tags: Appetite Loss  

You need to eat nutritious foods to stay healthy. Nutrients, vitamins, proteins, fats, and carbohydrates fuel your body, providing you with the energy you need to live. If you’ve ever experienced loss of appetite, you already know how it can affect your body.

Some of the signs and symptoms of appetite loss include:

  • Losing interest in foods
  • Not enjoying your favorite foods
  • Frequently skipping meals
  • Weight fluctuations and weight loss

When you lose your appetite, you may also experience:

  • Fatigue
  • Low energy levels
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Stomach pains
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Changes to your hair, skin, or nails

There are many reasons why you might experience a loss of appetite. Some of these reasons include:

  • Underlying medical conditions including Crohn’s disease, cancer, and diabetes
  • Side effects of medications you are taking, including antibiotics, amphetamines, chemotherapy, fluoxetine, and opioids
  • Emotional and mental health difficulties including anxiety, an eating disorder, depression, and stress
  • Physical changes your body is experiencing including recovery from a surgical procedure

Your gastroenterologist will begin treatment for appetite loss by ordering laboratory testing and imaging studies to determine the cause of your appetite loss. Depending on the cause of your appetite loss, your gastroenterologist may recommend:

  • Dietary modifications including eating small meals throughout the day
  • Referral to a dietician for development of an eating plan
  • Medications to stimulate your appetite, including corticosteroids and others
  • Medication adjustment if your appetite loss is caused by a medication you are taking
  • IV nutrient, vitamin, and mineral solutions to compensate for decreased food intake
  • Oral vitamin, nutrient, and mineral supplementation
  • Referral to a mental health specialist for help with an eating disorder

You can do a lot at home to help minimize appetite loss. Remember to:

  • Eat regular, small meals, even if you are not hungry
  • Consume liquid meals to help maintain nutrient levels
  • Eat bland foods to prevent irritation of your stomach

Appetite loss can dramatically affect the health of your body and your mind. Your gastroenterologist can help with appetite loss. To learn more about the causes and treatment of appetite loss, talk with your gastroenterologist today.

By Advanced Gastroenterology Group
November 10, 2022
Category: Gastroenterology

Do you suffer from chronic stomach or abdominal pain? If so, you could have a treatable condition known as irritable bowel syndrome or IBS. Your gastroenterologist is an expert at diagnosis and treatment of IBS and can help you feel better.

Irritable bowel syndrome causes problems in your large intestine. IBS is believed to be caused when the nervous system of your GI tract doesn’t function properly. The small muscles in the lining of your intestinal tract don’t move properly, so food doesn’t work its way through to your stomach easily.

Irritable bowel syndrome can cause unpleasant, painful symptoms like these:

  • Abdominal cramping and pain
  • Gas and bloating
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Mucus in your stools

Your diet and lifestyle have a lot to do with how well you feel when you have IBS. You will feel better if you avoid these foods and beverages:

  • Fruits
  • Milk and fats
  • Chocolate and spices
  • Cabbage and cauliflower
  • Broccoli and beans
  • Carbonated beverages and alcohol

Your gastroenterologist can help you build a diet plan so you can feel better.

Another important piece of living a healthy lifestyle when you have IBS is to minimize your stress. This isn’t always possible, so practicing stress management techniques is critical to minimizing IBS symptoms. You can try:

  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Deep breathing
  • Gentle stretching

For mild, occasional symptoms associated with IBS, your gastroenterologist may recommend medications including:

  • Antibiotics
  • Fiber supplements
  • Anti-diarrheal medications
  • Medications to reduce intestinal spasms

For moderate to severe IBS symptoms your gastroenterologist may recommend some additional medications including:

  • Alosetron, to relax your colon
  • Lubiprostone, to increase fluid secretion so stools pass easily

Irritable bowel syndrome can dramatically affect your ability to enjoy life. A modified diet, stress reduction, and help from your gastroenterologist are important ways to live a healthy lifestyle, even when you have IBS. To find out more about the causes, signs, symptoms, and treatment of IBS, talk with an expert. Call your gastroenterologist today.