Anorexia of Aging

Clin Geriatr Med. 2015 Aug;31(3):417-27. doi: 10.1016/j.cger.2015.04.012. Epub 2015 May 11.


The anorexia of aging is common, leading to adverse health consequences. As populations age, the impacts from anorexia in the older population are set to increase. Only greater awareness will allow for prevention or early intervention. This article discusses the physiologic anorexia of aging, highlights contributing factors, and proposes management strategies, including screening, especially in primary care. Many neuroendocrine factors have been implicated in the pathophysiology; it is clear that further human research is necessary if there is to be a pharmacologic breakthrough. There are currently no approved pharmacologic treatment strategies to prevent or treat the anorexia of aging.

Keywords: Anorexia; Older people; Sarcopenia; Undernutrition.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aging* / physiology
  • Aging* / psychology
  • Anorexia* / diagnosis
  • Anorexia* / etiology
  • Anorexia* / physiopathology
  • Anorexia* / prevention & control
  • Anorexia* / psychology
  • Appetite Regulation / physiology*
  • Geriatric Assessment / methods
  • Humans
  • Motor Activity
  • Nutrition Assessment
  • Nutritional Requirements / physiology*
  • Risk Assessment
  • Sarcopenia* / diagnosis
  • Sarcopenia* / etiology
  • Sarcopenia* / prevention & control