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Clinical Nutrition is nutrition of patients in health care. Clinical in this sense refers to the management of patients, including not only outpatients at clinics, but also (and mainly) inpatients in hospitals. It incorporates primarily the scientific fields of nutrition and dietetics. It aims to keep a healthy energy balance in patients, as well as providing sufficient amounts other nutrients such as protein, vitamins, minerals.
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Scope & Importance
Clinical nutrition is the study of the relationship between food and a healthy body. More specifically, it is the science of nutrients and how they are digested, absorbed, transported, metabolized, stored, and eliminated by the body.
Among the routes of administration, the preferred means of nutrition is, oral administration. Alternatives include enteral administration (in nasogastric feeding) and intravenous (in parenteral nutrition).In the field of clinical nutrition, malnutrition has causes, epidemiology and management distinct from those associated with malnutrition that is mainly related to poverty.
The main causes of clinical malnutrition are:
• Cachexia caused by diseases, injuries and/or aging
• Difficulties with ingestion, such as stroke, paresis, dementia, depression, dysphagia
• Clinical malnutrition may also be aggravated by iatrogenic factors, i.e., the inability of a health care entity to appropriately compensate for causes of malnutrition.
There are various definitions of clinical malnutrition. According to one of them, patients are defined as severely undernourished when meeting at least one of the following criteria: BMI < or = 20 kg/m2 and/or > or = 5% unintentional weight loss in the past month and/or > or = 10% unintentional weight loss in the past 6 months. By the same system, the patient is moderately undernourished if they met at least one of the following criteria: BMI 20.1–22 kg/m2 and/or 5-10% unintentional weight loss in the past six months.
Medical nutrition therapy (MNT) is a therapeutic approach to treating medical conditions and their associated symptoms via the use of a specifically tailored diet devised and monitored by a registered dietitian. The diet is based upon the patient's medical and psychosocial history, physical examination, functional examination and dietary history.
The role of MNT when administered by a dietitian is to reduce the risk of developing complications in pre-existing conditions such as diabetes as well as ameliorate the effects any existing conditions such as high cholesterol.
A nutritional therapy practitioner or clinical nutritionist combines the bio-chemical individuality of each client with a nutrient dense, properly prepared whole Food diet and nutritional supplementation in order to return the client to a state of optimal health. They strive to treat the body as a whole - addressing the causes of problems, not just the symptoms
Clinical nutrition is the practice of analyzing if a person is consuming an adequate amount of nutrients for good health. A clinical nutritionist is concerned with how nutrients in food are processed, stored and discarded by your body, along with how what you eat affects your overall well-being. Professionals in this field assess your nutritional needs based on your family and medical history, lifestyle and laboratory tests in order to make recommendations on your diet and individual nutritional needs. A clinical nutritionist may provide advice on changes to your diet that may help prevent disease.
Asia Pacific was the largest market for clinical nutrition in 2013, accounting for 41.5% of the global market share, followed by Europe and North America with market share of 24.4% and 22.6% respectively. From 2014 to 2020, the Asia Pacific clinical nutrition market is expected to grow at a CAGR 3.9%, owing to increasing demand from countries such as India and China. Increasing geriatric population is also expected to propel the growth of the Asia Pacific market. The market share of North America is expected to decrease to 21.3%, whereas that of Europe is expected to increase to 25.4% by 2020. The clinical nutrition market is bifurcated into product type (infant nutrition, enteral nutrition, and parenteral nutrition), type of infant nutrition (milk-based, soy-based, organic, probiotic/prebiotic, and others), and type of enteral nutrition (standard, and enteral nutrition for chronic illnesses). Infant nutrition segment holds the largest share of overall market in 2013 at USD 21.1 billion; and is expected to reach USD 27.1 billion in 2020, at a CAGR of 3.8% for the period 2014-2020.
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This page was last updated on 12th Sep, 2015
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