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Is appetite loss common in depression?

46 Answers
Last Updated: 10/05/2021 at 2:20pm
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Lisa Groesz, PhD


With evidenced based therapies, we find the root of the problem together to implement solutions. We all face crises, transitions, or disorders at some time.

Top Rated Answers
May 2nd, 2017 1:21am
Definitely. I've been suffering from bad anxiety and depression lately, and the worse I feel, the more my appetite drops. It gets to the point where I feel sick to my stomach just thinking about eating. Personally, I've really had to take a step back and stop putting so much pressure on myself. If I couldn't eat one day, or could only manage some tea and crackers, that's okay! Meanwhile, I can work out my depression and my eating thing will get better along with it. I was even afraid I had an eating disorder for the while. You're not alone, promise.
July 6th, 2020 5:57am
Depression is a feeling of sadness that does not go away for a long time and can interfere in your day to day activities. It leads to losing energy and interest. This can include Loss of Appetite despite the various stages of depression. A major depressive disorder is diagnosed when other symptoms are also faced by the individual. It must be noted that a loss of appetite may occur during other mental health conditions such as bipolar disorder and anxiety disorders. The extent of the loss of appetite faced may differ between moderate depression to severe depression. For older adults, it can be a problem as they do not have the energy to prepare the meals and eat them despite being hungry while for youngsters, they may worry their family members by not eating. It can be quite a shocking change to see someone refusing to eat ice cream for example! While loss of appetite is a common depression symptom, feelings of sadness or worthlessness can make some people overeat or not eat at all which isn’t very good because it happens in extremes and so people might not pay attention to the side effects. There are physical symptoms like severe weight change that can be dangerous. Overeating can be a way to deal with sadness through food which only makes you content for a short-term and is done more on regular basis while not eating at all can make the depression worse. Though this may not be apparent in the short-term, it can impact the physical health of the person. You may try changing your regular diet and try having food at the correct times and in moderation for a healthier and happier lifestyle.
November 10th, 2015 8:45pm
Yes, it is very common for people to loose their appetite, just like they also tend to see less beauty in their surroundings and things seem to be generally less attractive or fun to do then they did before. Depression can basically block out pleasurous things in your life, which makes it even harder to overcome depression. It´s like a downward spiral that you need to get out of, that´s why it is important to do things you´ve lost interest in anyway and try to find that interest again. - in that case, that might be finding your appetite again. But in the best case, the cause of the depression will be solved and you´ll hopefully be able to enjoy life better again :)
July 31st, 2017 3:07pm
I think appetite loss can be very common in depression as depression can put you in this dark hole of nothingness and you aren't able to do things for yourself. It can make you feel nothing and you just want to sit alone and do nothing either. There is no energy surrounding depression and it's hard to even just do a simple task everyday. Even eating can become a challenge and therefore you lose your appetite. Your mind isn't focused on everyday tasks and sometimes it just can't be bothered with anything. I'm not saying this happens to everyone who experiences depression but I do think it can happen to some.
November 3rd, 2015 7:54pm
Yes, appetite loss is common in depression. As I've mentioned before I was diagnosed with depression this year. I already knew that I had it before I was officially diagnosed with it. Loss of appetite doesn't occur in every case of depression because depression symptoms vary from person to person. Sometimes you can go from eating less, to nothing at all and then over eating. It's normal, but it's not healthy. I couldn't even hold a full course meal down without feeling sick and because I wasn't eating as much and then I started to go days without eating my weight would drop drastically. I eventually started to miss food, so as a way to try to cope with feeling down I would binge. Then I would go back to not eating much and not eating at all.
April 12th, 2015 3:17pm
It is one of the main symptoms of depression, especially when paired with unwanted weight loss. It is common to loose interest in daily activities when suffering from depression, including simple tasks such as eating, and people just loose their appetite, since they are uninterested in food.
July 20th, 2015 3:04am
Yes it is. The feeling can stem from a lack of purpose behind eating, when depression can cause one to feel like living is no longer meaningful, and therefore sustaining one's health is no longer necessary or even desirable. It can also be a form of self-harm where the empty feeling of hunger can overwhelm the empty feeling of depression.
August 10th, 2015 3:03pm
Appetite loss is a very common sign on depression and it doesn't have anything to do with eating disorders. Depression leaves the body feeling tired and lifeless, with no energy to even eat or shower.
March 8th, 2015 1:43am
Change is appetite is a common sign of depression. It can be appetite loss, or emotional eating can occur.
July 24th, 2017 11:41am
With depression, most people tend to either lose appeitie or gain it. Losing appetite is pretty common with it, though, especially if you're losing motivation to do other simple things or take care of yourself, that can just be part of it, sometimes. (Please eat, even if you're not hungry, though! Please nourish yourself)!
September 4th, 2017 11:54pm
For some people, it can be. Others will over-eat. Depression affects each person uniquely, which is part of the reason it can be so hard to treat and manage!
June 12th, 2015 9:55am
It is a quite common symptom of depression! Depression affects ma y of the things that are routine and needed to remain healthy such as appetite,sleep,thought process, and socializing. That is just to name a few. It is wise to seek professional help if this continues to be bothersome!
January 19th, 2016 3:23pm
very common when i was very depressed and now when i go in and out of it my appetite varies and i can completely lose it
April 5th, 2015 10:50pm
Yes. Many people either over or under eat when they are suffering from depression. Many times the victim is unaware, and just simply doesn't notice. It is a terrible thing to go through and needs treatment.
April 11th, 2015 8:57pm
Yes, loss of appetite or excessive gain in appetite are both very common in depression, loss of it being ore common than the flip side of the situation.
May 6th, 2015 3:24am
I do believe so, yes. It doesn't always mean depression though. It can be due to any number of things.
July 14th, 2015 8:01pm
Depression can show up in many faces. In some people it can cause overeating too. But yes, if you feel very unmotivated (to eat) it can without a doubt be a sign of depression.
November 3rd, 2015 9:39am
Yes, appetite loss is common in depression. In some case the patients will likely over eat as well.
June 13th, 2016 12:24am
In my experience there are many symptoms of depression, or symptoms that accompany depression, and loss of appetite can be one of these. It is important to remember to try to maintain a healthy schedule of diet and excercise - even if you feel you cannot muster it. Go for a walk, eat a small portion of something you like. Not taking care of yourself can make symptoms worse and can make your depression worse.
March 6th, 2015 1:56am
Yes, it is one of the common symptoms of depression; of course, it may not always mean that you're depressed!
April 26th, 2015 6:47am
Maybe for some, yes. I think that a decline in activity and an increase in caloric intake/binging may also be a symptom of it.
May 21st, 2015 5:40pm
Yes, when you lose your appetite from depression it becomes very hard to get back on track because of the lack of energy and interest you see in daily life tasks.
May 22nd, 2015 6:32pm
Changes in eating can be a symptom of depression, be it a loss or gain of appetite. It is important to remember to stay healthy by eating at least three meals a day. You may want to keep a journal of when and what you eat to help monitor your eating habits.
May 30th, 2015 5:05am
Yes. It is one of the first indicators and warning signs of clinical depression. Talk to a doctor if it is affecting your day to day life or you are losing too much weight.
June 10th, 2015 4:38pm
Yes it is. Both an increase and/or decrease in appetite are classic symptoms of depression. A fluctuating appetite also.
July 27th, 2015 4:41pm
VERY common. Symptoms can be broad and unique to the individual, but this particular symptom is very common. If you think you are depressed, consider talking to someone whether it be a counselor, a loved one, a friend... It can be difficult to handle on your own!
August 22nd, 2015 1:50pm
Often the symptoms of depression can vary from person to person. So one person may display one symptom and another person may not. Appetite loss (or general changes in appetite) can be a symptom of depression but I would suggest that if you are concerned about it that you talk to a doctor about it.
August 31st, 2015 9:11am
Depression can affect your appetite in a lot of ways. You may start eating 10 times the amount you normally do or you may not eat at all. Even if you feel like you can't eat you should still try. Not eating only makes it harder to deal with.
August 31st, 2015 7:58pm
While there are many different feelings or things that can happen with depression, not everyone is the same. The best thing to do if you are having an issue with depression is to seek the advice of a trained medical professional , including counselor or therapist.
September 14th, 2015 2:02pm
Yeah, it's common. In depression you could notice a loss or an increase in appetite, but it's not the only signal of depression. Others could be sleep desorders, loss of interest in things you've always liked, and low morale.