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Signs your body will give to show you're unhealthy


Monday, September 25, 2017


OUR bodies are complex machines, and similar to man-made machines, when things go awry they send signals to warn us that one part or another requires urgent attention, lest the condition continue to deteriorate beyond hope of successful intervention.

Dr Samantha Nicholson, medical internist at Imani Medical Centre, Papine Plaza, says that almost any physical signs and symptoms could signal an underlying medical condition that requires attention.

“There are many signals that our body sends when it is out of balance; in fact, the list is very extensive. Something that seems as insignificant as cravings could mean that there is a medical issue that needs to be addressed,” Dr Nicholson said.

Below Dr Nicholson shares a list of telltale signs that your body is unhealthy.


Loss of appetite, unexplained weight loss, unexplained fever, sweating at night (and it's not hot)

Associated medical condition(s): These could be suggestive of a systemic illness, notably cancer, HIV and AIDS. Unexplained weight loss could be linked to other conditions such as diabetes, depression, overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism), liver disease and malabsorption disorders.


Fatigue, decreased exercise tolerance

Associated medical condition(s): If you realise that you can't climb the stairs or walk the distance that you would normally be able to or think that you should be able to, this could mean that there are underlying conditions such as anaemia, heart failure and lung disease.


Not passing as much urine

Associated medical condition(s): If you are not passing urine and this is compounded by other factors such as swollen feet and/or face, it could suggest conditions such as kidney failure, which often doesn't have symptoms until more than three-quarters of the kidney is already gone. This means that you need to act on it as soon as it starts to happen.



Associated medical condition(s): This could suggest atherosclerosis or vascular diseases (blockages) and/or poor circulation. Atherosclerosis, if left untreated, leads to heart attack, strokes, and even limb amputations.


A change in your period cycle

Associated medical condition(s): Outside of menopause this could indicate that there is a major systemic illness such as lupus, chronic fatigue syndrome, or diabetes mellitus.



Associated medical condition(s): People have a tendency to self-diagnose headaches, often attributing them to stress, a need for glasses, or inflammation of the sinuses. But these can indicate a number of other conditions such as subarachnoid haemorrhage or what Jamaicans term “blood vessel buss”. When accompanied by weakness of the limbs and face, this could be symptoms of a stroke or other neurological conditions.