Anyone know of any herbs or essential oils to stimulate a poor appetite? I have heard caraway seed and alfalfa are good. Any others?
Please have a thorough check-up with your doctor. There are many reasons for a reduced appetite, some life-threatening. Also, reduced appetite is a side-effect of many conventional medications. A reduced appetite may be a result of a poor diet, too, or lack of exercise.
Also check with your doctor before beginning on any herb-taking regime. Herbs are medicines, you know, and just as you don't start popping pills, so you don't start swilling herbal medicines without proper expert advice.
Here's a few herbal remedies you could discuss with your doctor:
A decoction of the root of Angelica drunk as a tea before meals will act as a stimulant to the appetite.
Drink a tea made from the seeds of Caraway, or the seeds eaten, will stimulate the appetite.
Any of the following herbs, drunk as a tea, will stimulate the appetite: Barberry, Black Currant Chicory, Dandelion, French Sorrel, Garlic, Ginseng, Goldenseal, Ground Ivy, Hops, Horseradish, Mugwort, Oatstraw, Parsley, Safflower, Tarragon, Thyme, Wood Sorrel, Watercress, Yarrow.
Use the essential oil of Grapefruit, Tarragon, Rosewood or Frankincense as aromatherapy.
Holy Thistle is a good appetite stimulant. Drink 1-2 cups daily.
Drink Cranberry juice or eat the fruit. This is especially effective in children.
Eat some yoghurt mixed into some Apple sauce.
A thiamine deficiency is often the cause of a loss of appetite. Take a thiamine supplement along with B-complex, vitamin A, zinc, niacin, and biotin. These work well together and help in the assimilation of the thiamine.
Drink Peppermint tea to help increase the appetite.
Cut 1 handful of European Centaury root into small pieces and mix with one handful of Dandelion leaves. Pour 1 litre of red wine over the herbs and cover. Steep overnight. The next morning bring to the boil and simmer for 13 minutes. Grind 3 Juniper berries to a powder, add to the mixture and simmer for 3 more minutes. Allow to cool, strain and fill bottles that can be closed tightly. Drink 1 liqueur glass of the tonic twice daily before a meal. This tonic is an excellent appetite stimulant and helpful for anorexia.
Saw Palmetto berry stimulates appetite and improves digestion.
Carefully peel the skin off 3 bitter Oranges, leaving as much white pith on the fruit as possible. Chop the skin and cover with 1 litre white wine. Boil for 13 minutes. Remove the pith from the fruit, chop the fruit and add to the wine mixture. Add 13 of the pips and 13 tablespoons brown sugar. Boil for 30 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove seeds and pour the syrup into glass bottles. Seal tightly. Take 1 tablespoon in the morning and at night to improve appetite. It is also a mild laxative.
my favorite has always been to be around the smells of food
I love and find comforting. What do you like the smell of?
Make some, or buy some, take a deep breath of it. Remember
the first time you had some, or what good times you had
with your friends or family when you used to eat it.
Appetite can be a thing of the mind as well as a thing of
illness or health. Depression or unhappiness can put a
person of their feed. Maybe have a hot tub party for you
with a picnic basket of foods that you really enjoy and
associate with good events. Stress can be hard on enjoyment
of life in general, and maybe you need some time off or a
rest. If something is bothering you, try getting that out
of your system and you might feel better. Just a thought.
Thanks so much for your wonderful responses.
I am printing out Daisyduckworth's many great suggestions, for reference.
Cayce's suggestions are also great. I have been eating just about nothing for such a long time that I almost forget what it is like to prepare an actual meal and smell it and enjoy it.
Something is definitely physically wrong with me but I do not know what it is... this has been going on for a while and I have so far seen 3 doctors in the last 8 months, with no answers. I see a gastroenterologist later this week. Appetite loss isn't my only symptom but it seems to be the most prominent ... I am definitely not one to chug herbs willy-nilly with no thought to their effects, especially not knowing what is wrong with me. But I don't want to die of malnutrition/starvation while waiting for a diagnosis either.
How strange! What are the other symptoms? Things are popping into my head that I don't want to suggest without further symptoms...
Hi Heathen, my other major symptoms are that I am incredibly tired all the time, which is hugely abnormal for me (but I guess that could be from not eating?) and that I have had progressively increasing edema throughout my whole body. The edema is now under control by SEVERELY restricting water intake. But obviously, neither eating nor drinking is not a state that can continue long-term, ya know?
Does your urine have a brownish tinge? When you look at your tongue in the mirror in good light, what color is it? What color is the "fur" on top if there is any? Do you have mouth sores? Do you drink a lot of alcohol? Do you have bluish rings under your eyes? do you have any greenish or purplish areas on the palms of your hands? Do you have heart disease or family history of same? Chest or back or arm pains? Do you get minerals in your diet at all and to what extent? Have you had any recent head injuries? Any flu like symptoms? Are you pregnant? Any history of auto immune disease? Are your fingers their normal color? Do you get cramps or spasms in any of your muscles regularly, if so where? Do your thumb or thumbs get "stuck" or spasm? Do you have shin pain? Headaches? Nausea? Please get back with me.
Currently my urine is very dark, orange-brown, but that is because I am not drinking anything. Before I was restricting fluids, it was normal looking. My tongue looks totally normal, dark pink. No mouth sores. Don't drink alcohol at all. No rings under my eyes. The palms of my hands are indeed an odd color, sort of splotchy purplish. I used to have a good diet and made sure to get plenty of minerals and nutrients, in fact I was fanatical about it, but I haven't eaten a normal quantity of food for almost a year, and am currently not eating at all. No head injuries, no heart disease, no autoimmune disease (none that I know of, anyway), definitely not pregnant. As for flulike symptoms, I do get pretty severe chills and have also had unbelieveable night sweats, but never a fever as far as I can tell. No muscle spasms or pains. No headaches. I do sometimes have nausea if I try to eat, but that seems to be related to the fact that I feel extremely "full" all the time... like I spend all day stuffing myself with food, even if I do not eat at all. By the way, I am 26, if that's significant.
Drink plenty of water frequently, a minimum of 2 litres per day. Fluid retention is NOT directly related to fluid intake. To restrict fluids is to cause untold and endless problems, the least of which could be permanent kidney damage. Urine should pass almost as clear as water.
Get thee to a doctor, woman! Pronto!
Yes, get to a professional health care provider immediately. And wait until the provider tells you to increase your water. If your kidneys have shut down for whatever reason, drinking a bunch of water could literally drown you.
Sounds like you could have hepatitis, or something serious. Get another MD.
hmm this all sounds bad, if ur not drinking enough then your body will be retainging the water produced through metabolism. putting less work on ur kidneys
have you tried exercising
i find if i get up and go straight on the computer all day (i.e. during school holidays) i can sometimes not eat untill about 8 pm, and i usualy eat about every 3 hours (n.b. i'm not fat, i'm actually underweight, i just thought that people might take that example the wrong way)
and as for the origional topic, as a general rule, herbs used in cooking are used in cooking because they stimulate the apatite.
My doctors know I am restricting water. They are okay with it. They are all baffled about the fluid retention issue, but NOTHING works except severe water restriction, so that is what I have to do. I have seen 2 GPs so far, and 2 specialists (gastroenterologist and endocrinologist.) I just had a new round of tests (ultrasounds, xrays etc) last week, and if those things don't illuminate anything I guess it's time to go somewhere where the doctors might have a better idea... like the Mayo Clinic, or at least a big teaching hospital in a major city. This is a bizarre, baffling, and extremely alarming situation and no one has any ideas what's going on. Anyway, thanks for your help, everyone.
Thank you for getting back with this, sorrel. Now for round two of questions. Is the edema more upper or lower body or truely all over--where did it start? The fever and chills question is to rule out shao yang conditions. Chills means you have a yin condition with either spleen or kidney yang deficiency. The question now is what is the cause and how to modify the herbs for you. Do you have difficulty urinating? Are you constipated or have diarrhea? Does the top of your tongue look "greasy"? The Chinese have several herbal formulas for your condition, and I want to direct you to the best one for you. On your lab workups, did they do C-reactive protein and what is yours? Any of your leukocyte counts outside of range? Did they test for hepatitis A,B,or C? What is your alkaline phosphtase? Is your edema right under the skin or is it deeper in? Is your abdomen distended? Are any splotches like the ones on your hands any where else? Where, exactly, are they on your hands, near your thumbs? On the pinkie side, etc.? Do you have a yellow coat on your tongue? Did they check you for rheumatoid arthritis factors? Congestive heart conditions?This group of questions is to detirmine which level your condition is at and where it arises. Thank you.
Joanna, check with an MD before anything else to be sure nothing is wrong. Especially if you're planning on trying all kinds of things 'prescribed' here by strangers who know nothing about you.
I agree entirely with Lucy... could be a nonmalignant brain tumor, depression or some kind of chemical imbalance... nothing that nonlicensed people interested in herbalism can help you with.
herbalism is great for small easyly and surely diagnosed problems but this is something else, there may be some perfect herbal cure and none in conventional medicine, but its highly unlikely
regardless of that, good luck
Alfalfa is also a good appetite stimulant. I recommend medical aid first...but I thought you would like another herb to add to the list. :)
Not trying to be funny but Marijuana is a great appetite stimulate.
One other thought about an appetite stimulent. Yeast tablets work wonderfully. As long as you take what the bottle recommends, you shouldn't have a problem. Fairly cheap and safe to give it a try.
Hi, I am the one who originally posted this question. Just came back to check out the new replies... it's great that this thread is still accumulating new replies. Happydance, interesting that you mention yeast -- I assume you mean nutritional yeast or brewers' yeast? I just started eating this daily because I think I might have a B-vitamin deficiency. I am taking a B-complex supplement too, plus a mutlivitamin.
I am currently wondering if all my problems could be due to malnutrition. I had a very restrictive, unusual diet before this whole thing started (a lot of leafy vegetables and little else) and then when I lost my appetite, my intake of anything went way down. As part of this whole phenomenon, I had this nasty, worsening skin rash which a dermatologist just diagnosed as a zinc deficiency. It has miraculously cleared up since taking zinc supplements. The appetite loss and edema are unfortunately as bad as ever ... but I am hoping maybe that stuff will be easily reversible with supplements and nutrition too.
Anyway, just thought I'd check in in case anyone was wondering where I'd disappeared to.
FOR SOME REASON I CAN'T GET MYSELF TO EAT ANYTHING. I WOULD STAY THE WHOLE DAY WITHOUT EATING ANYTHING BECAUSE I HAVE NO APPETITE WHATSOEVER. I AM ALSO TIRED ALL TIME AND I CAN'T SEEM TO FALL ASLPEEP AT NIGHTS. MY HANDS ARE SOMETIME WHITISH PALE AND WOULD SHAKE AT TIMES. THEN AT TIMES I WOULD GET A HEADACHE BECAUSE I DIDN'T EAT ANYTHING. WHAT COULD BE THE PROBLEM?
Sweetestjan is right. Some peope were had. Bigtime.
Sweetestjan should respect those with reading related disabilities and turn off capslock.
I'm sorry brendon. Do you have reading related disabilities. Had a grandson with that. Had to make tapes of his home work for him.
I have quit smoking marijuana after 24 years of heavy use, and as a result of the detoxification process, I have had no appetite in a week - All I can take in are broths and light soups. I take a multi-vitamin daily, and have been to several doctors to rule out any 'medical' reasons for my appetite loss, and all the doctors all say the same thing: I am detoxing, and it will be a while before my body returns to 'normal'. I cannot take this weakness and no appetite anymore, and am at my wit's end as far as what I can do to stimulate my appetite. I have read all the above posts, and was wondering if anyone found anything that actually WORKS to increase the appetite? I am assuming part of my problem is physcological, because to me the worst thing in the world is vomiting, and because I feel nausea, I am afraid if I eat I'll get sick. Any help/ideas would be greatly appreciated!
Jason, a hard days work will go a long way towards stimulating your appetite. I don't think that Detoxing is the problem, what are the specific toxins? Withdrawal is no fun and I hope you get past it soon, have you tried things that are very easy to digest and get energy from, like fruit smoothies?
And just so no one jumps down my throat I am referring to physical manual labor, not implying that you do not work hard normally, or spamming for the medical industrial complex.
I haven't eaten any solids in over a week - I have ZERO energy - I have not been able to even walk around my house, so 'physical manual labor' is out of the question right now :(
I haven't tried fruit smoothies - I assume they would be too heavy - I have been sticking with broths and soup stocks, and Pedialyte pops...
Weirdest thing - I bought some all-natural peppermint tea, made a cup, and was amazed that I could actually eat half a piece of peanut butter toast after a week! I am going to try the tea again tomorrow, with a whole piece of toast in the morning, and then later in the day, and hoping that will help - The tea is very soothing, and worked wonders :-)
You might also try a touch of honey in the tea, and some baby food (not in the tea dummy) both are easily converted in to blood sugar which will give you the energy to do something.
I'm glad to hear that you are starting to do better.
I never thought of baby food - Thanks for the idea! I can still only manage 1/2 a piece of toast, so maybe the baby food will be easier on my system :)
Okay, here's the situation:
I went to the Emergency Room today because I was starting to worry about developing an eating disorder, and had an INSANE amount of blood work done, full physical, the works - After 9 miserable hours, the doctor comes back, and says I am perfectly healthy - All my tests were fine, it is simply THC withdrawal, and I'll get better on my own... I figured, 'Great, another quack', because he mentioned that I may be making myself not hungry, because I wasn't sure if I was detoxing, or really sick... Well, it was psychological; I have been eating non-stop since I got home today! Knowing that I am perfectly healthy kicked my brain into gear! I know that this doesn't help many people, but I'm sure there are some cases where it really IS just psychological, and it CAN BE FIXED! Sometimes just knowing you are fine makes a big difference :-)
I suspect that a quack told you that detoxing would be rough and thats what happened. Just FYI THC sticks around in the system for about a month, many people report that after a month they start craving cannabis more, but that too will pass. Plus by not smoking you drastically reduce the likely hood of impotence, one of the leading causes of damn it all. Glad things are going well again, I thought it odd that you were out of energy after just a week of no food, Cannabis use tends to encourage calorie storage.
Actually, the docs said I would have no problems at all quitting - They were wrong...
The problem I have is that I have a VERY fast metabolism, and need at least double the caloric intake as a 'normal' person would regularly take in...
itsvery very rareto find someone with a different metabolism,a pound of muscle in you burns the same amountof calories per day as a pound of muscle in me, you are probably just active or at least fidgety. I walk for about two hours a day and because of that I can take in huge amounts of food and stay just a little over weight.
Are you back to eating regularly then?
I have a slightly different situation. I have a 7 year old nephew (that lives in Honduras) and eats close to nothing. He's been that way for over 2 years. He hides his food in his pockets and tosses it out later. I'm guessing he gets most of his nutrition from fresh fruits he occasionally eats. His poor mother his extremly concerned and his taken him to several doctors. At first they said he would grow out of it, and when that didn't happen they gave him tons vitamins and later prescriptions. all of which had no effect on his appetite and a very negitive effect on his normally sweet personality. The doctors suggest that she offer him food but not force him to eat because it may cause a negative association with food. I'm about to take a trip down there and she is begging me to find something natural to help increase his appetite. She actually told me once that she would probably cry(for joy) the day her son actually ASKED her for something to eat. I really want to help them, however, I am obviuosly not a doctor and I have never suffered from this problem myself (my hips would agree with that statment completely). So I am asking for some educated advice on this, before I offer them something completely inappropriate. I was concidering peppermint tea, cranberry juice, maybe B-12. (things that a 7 yr old might actually take) also they need to be things that they might be able to find down there, that won't put a huge dent in there extremely limited income. I look forward to any advice you my be able to give me (us) and sincerely appreciate your time and effort. Thank You from the bottom of my heart and I wish good luck and a prompt recovery to any who may suffer with this extermly difficult situation.
Your family will always find bottled/canned "Malta", malted beverage with good B vitamins, in Honduras. The more bitter & less sweet brands will act better on improving the appetite.
Your family will also have available "Naranja Agria", bitter orange, & the other ingredients to make the syrup described in the 2nd post from the top of this thread. Go see the last paragraph of Daisyduckworth's Oct. 3, 2005 explanation of using bitter orange conveniently.
Hey gringojay- thanks for the advice. Your right, those are things they can find easy enough in honduras. I will pick some up in the city(teguc) before I head to their village. I hope it works! any other suggestions?
My husband stopped taking Levaquin a week ago and hasn't had an appetite since. He's been in the ER twice this week for treatment of nausea and/or vomiting. He saw an acupuncturist, who treated him w/ needles once, and gave him herbs, but the herbs nauseate him. Food nauseates him. Smells nauseate him. He thinks he'll never be able to eat again. I can't offer him anything because the thought of food nauseates him. When he thinks about tea or even water, he gets nauseated. He just took Zofran (ondansetrol, an anti-nauseant for heavy-duty nausea, as in cancer chemotherapy, e.g.). We'll see what happens. Compazine tabs and Phenergan suppositories haven't really helped, or help only during the day, not at night when he lies down. I think half the problem is emotional. He's used to being very active and healthy, and now he's without energy and feeks cold all the time - that's another thing, in the past, eating turned him into a furnace, and now that he isn't eating, he's cold. He's almost at the end of his rope, and I can't see that there's anything I can do. I read through all the posts and I don't see anything in them that addresses this situation. It is unlikely, but possible, he still has an infection, as he never finished the course of antibiotics, and that a lingering or even spreading infection is contributing to this, but he doesn't have any obvious signs of infectin. He sees the doctor on Tuesday. The doctor should be able to determine if infection is still a problem. Wish I could slip him an anti-anxiety drug/herb to get his mind off this; I think a lot of it is emotional; he hasn't lost any weight, although he looks thinner to me, and is moving like an old man; he's only 66. He is very thin anyway and is normally highly energetic, but not now. He will try things other people suggest, but what I suggest.
go dog go - It is the result of the antibiotics. I say that with conviction because it happened to me. Antibiotics completely destroy the good bacteria in your stomach and intestines. I suffered just as your husband has and the gastro doc said sometimes antibiotics can really cause some serious issues. Have him take acidophilus regularly to get his digestive system back to normal. If I am wrong, well, then the acidophilus won't hurt. I ended up seeing my doc for anti-anxiety medication, which helped immediately because I was so stressed worrying about why I couldn't eat. It took me well over 2 months to be able to eat and feel normal again.
thank you everyone for all of your information. My 35 year old son is waiting for a lung transplant and he has been given so many drugs that he lost his appetite. He tells me he put food in his mouth and it won't go down. He was a very very good eater and organic nutritional person before this happened. I am going to get the peppermint tea and the cranberry juice today. I know the acidophilus is correct but he is not allowed to take it because this he is immune supressed because this is his 2nd transplant. Any comments are gladly appreciated!
I had my gallbladder removed and since then my weight has become a disaster. I have been losing so much. I am in so much distress over it. I can't stand it or stand to look at myself anymore. I want to eat, I just can't put the food near me or even think about eating, even though I have a potassium problem and need to eat. I need to put something on my stomach. What do I do without making myself sick.
Milk thistle tea is helping me. I took a medication for a uti that has decreased my appetite.
I know that this post is old, but I read majority of the posts and I need help as well. In a yr and 1/2 I lost close to 40 lbs. My appetite slowly shrank. First I couldnt and didnt want to eat anything but salads. Then it went from 3 meals a day to 2, then 1, then sometimes nothing but juice. It goes up for 2 days or so and then I'll have diarrhea if I eat too much. Now I'll get hungry and if I don't eat right then and there, my hunger will go away and I won't be hungry for another 6-8 hours. Sometimes in the middle of the meal, it becomes hard for me to finish. My face has broken out so much and my hands shake alot. I get these headaches that feel like the pain starts from behind my eye to the front of my forehead. My urine is somewhat of a normal color. At first, I thought it might be a hormonal inbalance (in one year, I was on 2 diff birth controls and an antidepressant) but I've been off everything for a year and still no progress. I want to eat, I want to be back to normal. I went to see a doctor and he said I was completely healthy. They did a complete checkup, blood work and all. Nothing. I need help!