Appetite loss, malnutrition, and mortality: a significant association in need of urgent recognition?
Despite its high prevalence among older adults, appetite loss is underrecognized in clinical practice. Explanations for this underrecognition include the lack of uniform terminology for the condition paired with an absence of defined, standardised approaches to assessing it. Moreover, appetite loss is commonly misconstrued as a normal and irreversible part of the ageing process. Together, these reasons create heterogeneity across anorexia of ageing studies, thereby hindering the recognition and management of appetite loss among older adults. To overcome this gap, a better understanding of appetite loss’ effects on morbidity and mortality in older adults is needed.
This systematic literature review aimed to investigate the relationship between appetite loss and negative outcomes in older adults aged ≥ 65 years.