Pharmacist’s Role in Malnutrition Issues

According to World Health Organisation, malnutrition is defined as deficiencies, excesses, or imbalances in a person’s intake of nutrients and has been regarded as public health issues. In fact, millions of people have been afflicted by different forms of malnutrition where 1.9 billion adults are overweight or obese while 462 million are underweight. 

In public perception, physicians and nutritionists are the one who have the biggest responsibility in resolving malnutrition issues. However, as pharmacists, we should not look at this issue with folded arms. Instead, we must consider our contribution beyond our role in dispensing but also making contribution in public health issues such as malnutrition.

Firstly, pharmacists should understand that medicine is not the remedy for all diseases. In the case of overnutrition such as obesity and diabetes, pharmacists should utilize nutrition knowledge to advise patients to acquire healthy eating habits such as food pyramid concepts. Moreover, pharmacists can introduce supplements to treat malnutrition diseases as supplements such as vitamins can instantly fulfil the needs of specific vitamins without side effects like medicine. Lastly, research pharmacists can develop nutritional pills that meets daily nutrients requirements where people will not neglect the needs of micronutrients particularly.

Malnutrition can be fatal on human health such as stunted growth among children and loss of coordination of normal organ function. Our health is largely dependent on a balanced diet while medicine is just an aid for improving health. It is time for pharmacists to consider nutrition and push forward the prevention agenda.