Underweight can be caused by a variety of factors, some of which are psychological, while others are physical.

Many illnesses can cause temporary weight loss. If you have had a bad dose of flu, accompanied by a high temperature, you may lose a few kilos, but you will probably gain back those kilos once you are well again.

There are five major medical reasons for pronounced weight loss and underweight:


If however, the function of your thyroid gland is disturbed it produces too much thyroid hormone, this condition is called hyperthyroidism loss of weight despite adequate intakes of food is possible.


Malignancy or cancer can also be associated with rapid weight loss, tiredness, lack of appetite, nausea and inability to gain weight.


Tuberculosis or TB, is very common disease that is accompanied by rapid weight loss, coughing, night sweats, tiredness and malaise.

DiabetesUnderweight Diabetic

Patients with insulin resistance and diabetes tend to suffer from overweight, excessive weight loss, tiredness, excessive thirst and urination are also symptoms of diabetes.


Main cause of wasting or excessive weight loss patients is HIV/Aids. This condition, also initially called ‘slim disease’, causes pronounced weight loss and hampers weight gain.

Celiac disease

The most severe form of gluten intolerance; gluten triggers an immune response in the body causing inflammation and damage to the small intestine.

Psychological Causes of Underweight

Patients suffering from depression not only often have a reduced appetite, but they may actively lose weight at an alarming rate.

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