Markedly Reduced Food Intake

Markedly Reduced Food Intake

Markedly reduced food intake (MRFI) is a condition wherein individuals tend to reduce drastically their usual daily food intake voluntarily, without any medical advice and for no medical purpose. It can often be observed as a symptom of an underlying mental health disorder such as an eating disorder, however, it is recognized as an eating disorder in its own right.

People with MRFI will often deprive themselves of necessary nutrients, and the resulting lack of nutrition can bring on serious and long-lasting physical and psychological repercussions.

Signs and Symptoms of Markedly Reduced Food Intake

The physical symptoms of MRFI are often hard to observe as people tend to hide them well, however, if the condition has been going on for a long period of time the following symptoms may be present:

  • Rapid weight loss.
  • Fatigue.
  • Hair loss.
  • Brittle nails.
  • Dry or yellowing skin.
  • Loss of menstruation.

Furthermore, MRFI can also bring on psychological symptoms such as:

  • Depression.
  • Loss of interest in activities.
  • Social withdrawal.
  • Mood swings.
  • Inability to concentrate.
  • Irritability.

Treatment for Markedly Reduced Food Intake

The treatment options for MRFI tend to depend on the underlying cause. If the cause is an underlying mental health condition, such as an eating disorder, then the treatment would focus on tackling the disorder first. This could involve a combination of medication, counselling and psychotherapy.

Likewise, if the root cause is a physical condition, such as an underlying vitamin deficiency, then treatment would involve correcting the deficiency. This could involve taking nutritional supplements or changing one’s diet to ensure that the necessary nutrients and calories are provided.

Ultimately, it is important to take note of any changes to eating patterns that may lead to MRFI and consult with a healthcare professional if any of the symptoms mentioned above are present.