What are the Factors Affecting the Nutritional Problems?


What are the Factors Affecting the Nutritional Problems?

A balanced diet is the key to a healthy body. The biological functions of your body highly depend on the type of diet consumed and the physical activity carried out. There are various macro and micronutrients that are required by your body in the proper amount. When there is a deficiency of one or more nutrients or over-consumption, it can affect the functioning of the body and may also give rise to certain health problems related to nutrition.

Sadly, between 2014-16, around 190.7 million people suffered from nutritional problems in India as per the report submitted by Food and Agriculture Organization report on State of Food Security and Nutrition. 

Since most of the nutrients are obtained by the food you intake, once you start consuming a healthy and balanced diet, the problem of nutritional deficiency can be cured. In this article, we will talk about common nutritional problems, the causes of nutritional problems and how to prevent them. Continue reading to know more about current nutritional problems. 

Types of Nutritional Problems in India

Nutritional problems in India are a major concern since a large population suffers from it. Here is the list of nutritional problems:

Vitamin Deficiency

Your body requires a range of vitamins, and deficiency of one or more of these may cause health problems. Here is the list of nutritional problems related to vitamins.

Vitamin D deficiency

Vitamin D helps maintain healthy bones, calcium, phosphate, cell functioning, and nerve signalling.

A lack of vitamin D can lead to muscle and bone weakening and diseases like diabetes, hypertension, rickets children, and so on. It may also trigger osteoporosis in the long run.

Vitamin A deficiency 

Vision, metabolism, and cell development are all affected by a deficiency of Vitamin A. It also keeps in shape the lining of the intestines and urinary tract. A lack of vitamin A can cause lung, heart, skin, and immune system problems.

Vitamin C deficiency

Functioning of blood vessels, making RBC (red blood cells), teeth, gums, tissue, and skin requires the proper amount of Vitamin C. A lack of the same can lead to anaemia, extreme weakness and fatigue. 

Vitamin B12

The functioning of the nervous system is highly impacted by the presence of Vitamin B12 in the body. Lack of Vitamin B12 can lead to neurological and related problems.

Protein deficiency

Muscles, nails, hair, and bones all require a good amount of protein to properly develop. A deficiency of protein can cause slow healing of wounds, mood changes, weakening of hair and nails, etc.

Iron deficiency

A healthy level of haemoglobin is maintained with the help of iron in the body. The deficiency of the same can lead to weakness, fatigue, shortness of breath, and paleness.

Folate deficiency

Folate is also known as Vitamin B9. It regulates DNA and RNA synthesis and the making of red blood cells. It is very important for pregnant women to maintain a healthy folate level as the deficiency may lead to mouth sores, anaemia, weakness, and so on.

Iodine deficiency

Iodine can be easily found in various food items like milk, yoghurt, etc. A deficiency of iodine can cause hyperthyroidism, dry skin, etc.

Symptoms of Nutritional Deficiency 

Symptoms of Nutritional Deficiency

Some of the common symptoms of nutritional deficiency include:

  • Irregular Heartbeat
  • Pain in bones
  • Poor night vision or vision deterioration or Insomnia
  • Weight Gain
  • Dizziness 
  • Extreme Fatigue 
  • Dry Eyes
  • Difficulty in breathing 
  • Anxiety 
  • Nausea

And the list goes on!

Causes of Nutritional Deficiency

Nutritional problems can affect health in the short term as well as in the long term. Before finding a cure, it is essential to know the causes of nutritional problems. Here are the two major reasons behind the nutritional problems:

Improper Food Intake: Primary Nutritional Deficiency

A balanced diet contains all the essential nutrients in the right amount. A person consuming a balanced diet is highly likely to maintain a healthy body without any major nutrient deficiency. Those who do not consume a balanced diet or switch to junk food every now and then have a high chance of developing nutritional deficiencies.

Underlying Health Issues: Secondary Nutritional Deficiency

Sometimes, an underlying health condition, like lactose intolerance can lead to the deficiency of certain nutrients in the body. If you are allergic to certain essential food items, it will be obvious for you to fall short of such nutrients. Hence, it is important to treat the underlying health problem and include nutrient supplements in your daily routine to maintain a healthy body. For best results, you must consult your doctor.

Effects of Nutritional Problems on Health

Nutritional deficiency can affect your body in different ways. From fatigue and weakness to serious health issues, all of these can be a sign of nutritional deficiency. Here are a few of the common health effects of nutritional problems.

Cardiovascular / Heart issue

Poor eating habits have detrimental effect on your heart health. Insufficient intake or over-consumption can trigger inflammation, which later can lead to heart diseases such as stroke.

Muscle Impaired 

A diet rich with amino acid aids in maximizing the muscle protein synthesis. Inadequate dietary intake may cause muscle disfunction. Vitamin D deficiency can cause major loss. Also, body training without enough nutrients can lead to muscle injury.

Infectious Diseases

Some deficiency can make you vulnerable to infectious illnesses such as diarrhea, malaria, measles, chronic ear infection etc. 

How to Diagnose Nutritional Deficiency? 

As discussed above, improper food or underlying health conditions are two major causes of nutritional problems in India. Fixing these two can help you get back your healthy body. So, the solution to the deficiency of nutrients is as follows:

Food intake

To prevent primary nutritional deficiency, proper food intake is a must. Here is the list of food you can take:

  • Protein: Chicken, egg, milk, pulses
  • Vitamin D: Egg yolk, exposure to sunlight, fish
  • Vitamin A: Grapefruit, pumpkin, cantaloupe
  • Vitamin C: Kiwi, strawberry, broccoli, bell peppers, tomatoes
  • Vitamin B12:Shalmon, shellfish, trout
  • Iron: Shellfish, red meat,  kidney beans
  • Folate: Tomato juice, citrus fruits, peas, spinach, avocado
  • Iodine: Seaweed, egg, fish, diary, cheese


Depending on the diagnosis, your doctor may prescribe certain nutritional supplements to you. It may be in the form of soluble intakes or tablets.

1) Medical Advice

The secondary nutritional problems that occur due to underlying health conditions can also be cured. For this, your doctor may prescribe certain medications or medical procedures.

2) Government Initiatives

To successfully combat the nutritional problems in India, the government of India has taken various preventive measures including: National Nutrition Mission, 2003

  • National Plan of Action on Nutrition, 1995
  • Special nutrition program (1970-71)
  • Nutritional Anaemia Prophylaxis Programme, 1970

Last but not least, regular exercise is a must to maintain a healthy body. So, along with the proper food intake and supplements, you must also ensure regular physical activities and exercises.

Over to You

The shortage of nutrients in the body can lead to several health issues. While eating a balanced diet can greatly help in keeping a good help, some health issue may require immediate medical attention or in the worst case hospitalisation. Simply put, sudden emergencies can out a huge dent in your pocket if you are not insured. With an unabated increase in the cost of healthcare expenses, it is a smart idea to invest in best health insurance policy

With Care Health Insurance, you can protect your finances during a medical emergency. Our customised plans allow you to go with a plan that not only suits your and your family’s healthcare needs but also your pocket. Features like 5% digital discount, comprehensive coverage up to 6 Crores, 24800+ cashless healthcare providers, 24*7 claim assistance- Care health insurance expectation. Let us connect you for detailed guidance. 

>> Also Read: 5 Nutrients That Will Protect Your Eyes


The above information is for reference purposes only: Policy Assurance and Claims at the underwriter's discretion.

All plan features, benefits, coverage, and claims underwriting are subject to policy terms and conditions. Kindly refer to the brochure, sales prospectus, and policy documents carefully.

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