Increased hunger (hyperphagia)

Being hungry is a normal desire to eat food when you need it. When this desire is increased or uncontrolled (eaten at any time and even after eating properly) we speak of polyphagia, hyperphagia or increased appetite. There are signs of persistent increase in appetite or cycles of more or less appetite, as a direct side effect may or may not have increased body weight.

Causes of increased appetite

The two main groups of possibilities of appetite increase are psychological and hormonal alterations.

  • Anxiety.
  • Bulimia (frequent in women between the ages of 17 and 30).
  • Diabetes mellitus.
  • Pregnancy diabetes.
  • Graves’ disease.
  • Hyperthyroidism.
  • Hypoglycemia.
  • Medications (corticosteroids, antiallergics, antidepressants, etc).
  • Premenstrual syndrome.

Care and Treatment

The possible causes should be studied to put the appropriate treatment. Therefore, if you are taking medications, you should consult your doctor about the need to continue taking them or to lower the dosage of them.

In cases of anxiety or depression should consult with your doctor and put in treatment. If there are no psychological causes or due to the taking of medicines, a study of the metabolism should be carried out. In this case, in addition to collecting a history of the process and physical examination, your doctor will request additional tests:

  • Routine blood and urine tests.
  • Thyroid function tests.
  • Others more specific depending on each case.


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