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NHS Kernow’s website closed on 30 June 2022. Visit the NHS Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Integrated Care Board website for information about our health and care services.

Nutrition

Nutrition is an essential part of our health and wellbeing. On these pages, you can find information on several areas of nutrition, for example eating well after COVID-19 and vitamin D.

Malnutrition

One key issue in the UK is malnutrition. Did you know that more than 3 million people in the UK are at risk of malnutrition? It is a common problem, and it is important we look out for it in ourselves and those we care for.

Malnutrition occurs when you don’t get all the nutrients you need from your diet. A common sign is losing weight without meaning to. Other signs include feeling weak and tired, getting ill more often, and taking longer to recover. Find out more about the symptoms and causes of malnutrition.

If you have these symptoms or have lost weight without meaning to over the past few months, see your GP or other healthcare professional. If you are worried about a friend or family member, encourage them to get help.

Becoming malnourished can happen to anyone, but some people are more at risk, such as people with dementia or older adults. We have information available that is targeted and these individuals and those living in care homes.

As well as the signs above, being malnourished can cause many other unwanted effects, for example being more likely to have an infection, being more likely to have a fall, cuts and wounds taking longer to heal, and feeling low in mood. It is important that we identify and treat malnutrition risk as early as possible to prevent it getting worse and causing further issues.

The information and resources on these pages will help you to support people who may be at risk of malnutrition. There are also resources that can be downloaded and links to useful websites.

If you are looking for information on a healthy, balanced diet, visit the NHS eat well website.

Contact us

If you are a healthcare professional looking for information on appropriate prescribing of oral nutritional supplements, email our prescribing team. You can also email the team if you have any questions about the information on these pages.

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