I have never been more grateful for good nutrition. I stopped tolerating feeds for a few days this week and experienced a small taste of that draining and body-encompassing exhaustion that comes along with a lack of nutrition.
Over the past two years, I’ve struggled with severe malnutrition that caused a lot of complications and negatively impacted my health. Malnutrition has taken so much away from me. Gratefully, over the past few months, my nutrition has improved drastically which has allowed me to have significantly more energy to pour into daily activities. Improving my nutrition has helped me make improvements in PT, have better mental health, and have a more successful recovery from my surgery this fall.
With all that has been going on lately, sometimes I forget to be grateful for my nutrition, but this past week was a huge reminder to appreciate the ability to fuel my body and absorb nutrients (even if it is via a tube).
Malnutrition occurs when there is a lack of sufficient nutrients in one’s body, and it can be experienced in any body size. Not only does malnutrition cause damage to one’s physical body, but it can also negatively impact one’s thoughts, emotions, and relationships. A starved brain does NOT function properly. Symptoms such as difficulty concentrating, fatigue, dizziness, reduced motivation, anxiety, impaired decision-making, and mood fluctuations can all be a result of malnutrition.
Becoming malnourished is terrifying and made me feel like a shell of myself. Although I am still working on better nutrition, I am extremely stronger in this regard than I was a year ago. Nutrition is not something I ever want to take for granted again!