Weight loss

Unexplained weight loss or losing weight without trying can be a symptom of an underlying medical disorder.

An individuals body weight is determined by your calorie intake, overall health, age, nutrient absorption, exercise, and other factors. Weight steadily increases through puberty and then as you reach middle adulthood, your weight should remain relatively stable from year to year.  A decrease of a few pounds is rarely cause for concern, however there are situations when weight loss should be brought to the attention of your doctor. These include:

  • Unexplained weight loss of 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms) or more
  • Weight loss of more than 5 percent of your body weight
  • Persistent weight loss

A number  of gastrointestinal conditions, thyroid disease, metabolic problems, cancer, and other problems can result in significant weight loss. If you're losing weight without trying and you're not sure why, consult your doctor who will work with you to determine what's causing the weight loss and the best way to treat the problem.