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Protein Energy Malnutrition – How Serious Can it Be?
Protein is an important part of every cell, organ and function of the body. It is very important and can be found in many sources in a variety of foods – including foods that are not very good for the human body, such as processed foods or fast food. Although protein can be found in many food sources many people still do not get enough calories in their diet as well as protein.
Protein energy deficiency (PEM) is an autoimmune disease that is the leading cause of death in developing countries. PEM occurs when there are not enough calories or proteins to meet the body’s nutritional needs. However, it doesn’t just happen when there is a lack of protein in the diet, it also happens when the body can’t absorb the protein or isn’t able to convert it for its own use.
PEM is not an uncommon problem in the United States; However, it affects two demographic groups: the elderly living in nursing homes or other long-term care facilities and children from poor families. It occurs in one out of every two patients at work, and affects 48% of other, hospital patients (Source: FAQS.org)
There are two types of PEM, Primary and Secondary. Primary PEM occurs when there is a lack of all protein sources in the diet and too few calories. Secondary PEM is more common in the United States, and is usually a complication of another disease: AIDS, cancer, chronic kidney disease, inflammation. PEM develops slowly during an illness or when the body is starving, but it can develop rapidly if it is an acute illness.
Protein deficiency can occur in hospitalized patients and long-term care home residents for a number of reasons. Most of them cannot be chewed or swallowed properly, which prevents them from getting enough food into the system. Some have slow or faulty digestive systems, which prevent them from processing the food they eat, leaving them feeling unwell and unwilling to eat the next meal. Most of them are still not strong enough, and have slowed down or lost their healers, which prevents them from starving. Older people are less likely to start, regardless of health.
In addition to not being able to eat and the amount of calories in the diet, these patients may die due to blood loss, diarrhea, high blood sugar, kidney disease, malabsorption disease . There are other methods that greatly increase the nutritional needs of the body, especially the need for protein. These conditions include: fever, infection, surgery, injury, tumor, heat and some of the use of certain medicines.
Not being able to get enough calories or enough protein in the diet can cause serious problems, affecting the appearance and function of every organ in the body. The speed or severity of the disease depends on the type of food and previous health, the nature of the disease and the speed of travel.
Protein deficiency can range from mild to severe; however there are no set criteria for setting the levels. Most doctors agree that a loss of ten to twenty percent of body weight is mild PEM. At this level, the grip is weak and unable to perform high-intensity activities.
The most serious complication of PEM is weight loss of more than twenty percent, which can be fatal. At this stage of the disease, the patient cannot eat the same foods even if they want to, the heart rate becomes very slow, and the blood pressure drops severely. The body’s core temperature also drops below normal. The skin becomes baggy and wrinkled, the hair becomes dry, thin and brittle. During this time the constipation and fatigue are very intense. The patient is more prone to ulcers (also known as bedsores) and other skin diseases as the body is unable to fight the damage to the skin’s surface, which or infectious diseases.
It is important for those at risk of protein-energy deficiency (children, the sick and the elderly) to have enough calories, as well as the three macronutrients to maintain or support their health. to heal from disease or pain. Using a protein supplement is beneficial because it is easier to absorb into the body. Once the condition reaches the mild to severe stage, the condition can become more severe without treatment and nutrition.
There are many types of protein supplements that can be considered at this time, but the same criteria must be met in order to be effective:
– It should contain high quality protein that can be synthesized by the body without any effort. (Protein takes energy from the body to digest)
– Do not take other foods that cause allergic reactions, are difficult to digest or, finally, can destroy the protein.
– Must be very tasty. Protein supplements that are too high in amino acids are usually very bitter and cannot be easily consumed by humans. The protein in the supplement must be broken down into smaller peptides to make them easier to use and without bitterness.
– It should be adapted so that the patient can transfer and add protein again from the feeding tube to the food without needing to introduce a new supplement source into the system which increases the risk of infection sick to some people.
– Do not increase blood sugar that occurs in the presence of added sugars.
– They should correct the actual problem of protein digestion or absorption when possible.
– Finally, the protein supplement should provide many other possible benefits without having existing health conditions or hindering recovery.
There are many types of protein supplements including protein powders that can be added to other feed sources and protein supplement shots. Protein powders have many advantages and disadvantages for each of the four types.
Whey Protein Powder: Benefits
– Increase the production of glutathione, which boosts immunity
– The highest level of branched amino acids obtained from natural food can be transferred directly to muscle tissue
– A good source of the amino acid leucine which is important for muscle growth
– It helps in the proper consumption of proteins, fats, carbohydrates and micronutrients
– Helps maintain muscle tissue
– Maintains healthy blood sugar levels
– A high calorie protein source
Whey Protein: Disadvantages
– May be allergic in people who are lactose intolerant
– Too much milk can damage the liver
Soy Protein: Benefits
– The nature of protein is highly digestible
– Improves the nutritional value of other foods
– Lowers cholesterol
– Good for vegans
– Source of phytoestrogens that are effective in many conditions and diseases including osteoporosis and breast health
Soy Protein: Disadvantages
– Possible allergies
– May not be indicated in certain types of breast cancer
Rice Protein: Benefits
– Easy to digest
– Suitable for vegans
Rice Protein: Disadvantages
– May be difficult to find in some areas
– It will cost more to buy
Protein Products Benefits
– Made from egg white, considered the best protein source
– Fat free
– high quality protein
– High food source in amino acids, alanine, argine, glycine and methone.
Negative effects of egg protein
– May react with certain medications
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