Top 5 Signs of Fat Deficiency  

Top 5 Signs of Fat Deficiency

Fat-free might not be the best way to be! Most of us simply consider whether we’re eating too much fat and not too little when it comes to the nutrient breakdown of our diets. We assume that fat is unhealthy for us and that it should be avoided at all costs.


Fats are essential nutrients, and your body needs a decent amount of essential fatty acids to function properly. Consuming enough amounts of fat will keep you away from fat shortage disorders.

What is Fat Deficiency?

Fat is a critical macronutrient in the diet that performs a number of vital bodily tasks, including assisting in the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins, supplying energy, cushioning organs with fat storage, and acting as insulation. 

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Although there have been multiple reports of high fat intake and its consequences. Skin problems, neurological problems, stunted growth, hair loss, and many other conditions are brought on by a lack of fat.

Why your body needs fat too?

Even though science has shown that eating trans and saturated fats causes heart disease and other illnesses, most people interpret this to indicate that they should avoid all fats.

Therefore, you might be more concerned with including a lot of vitamin-rich foods in your diet, you should be aware that if you don’t consume enough monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, none of the vitamins will be absorbed by your body.

 This is due to the fat-soluble nature of the majority of vitamins, including A, D, E, and K. Fatty acids are also necessary for the healthy functioning of

  • Eyes
  • Brain
  • Blood clotting
  • Wound healing and
  •  Proper synthesis of hormones like estrogen and testosterone.

Causes of fat deficiency

The majority of essential fatty acids (EFAs) that the body cannot synthesise are obtained from dietary fat.

A diet that severely restricts fat intake is widely mentioned as the root cause. Deficiency may also result from impairment in the ingestion, digestion, absorption, and/or metabolism of fat.

Other potential contributing factors include pancreatic insufficiency to generate enzymes, celiac disease, resection of the intestine and inflammatory bowel disease

A few procedures, such as bariatric surgery, which can result in malabsorption, might also create deficiencies.

What are some symptoms of fat deficiency?

Some biological processes in your body could not function well if you don’t consume enough fat in your diet.

Symptoms you should watch out for includes 

  • Dry, scaly skin
  • Having trouble losing weight
  • Impaired transport of cholesterol
  • Having a persistent cold
  • Having constant hunger
  • Imbalance of hormones
  • Brittle nails
  • Increased likelihood of mental illnesses
  • Visual symptoms like reading difficulties and nighttime vision problems
  • Increase in omega-9 fatty acids and decline in omega-6 fatty acids in the tissues.

Top 5 Signs of Fat Deficiency

The essential fatty acids are important for your body’s effective functioning. Deficiency of fats can show up in many ways. 

Let’s take a closer look at some of the signs that you may not be getting enough fat in your diet.

Skin problems

According to a 1962 study that was published in Acta Paediatrica, the skin is the organ that is most affected by lack of fat. In addition to having a higher likelihood of being inflamed and swollen skin , dermatitis is frequently associated with scaly or dry rashes on the skin.

Hair loss

Your body produces fatty chemicals called prostaglandins that encourage hair growth. Consuming insufficient amounts of essential fat may alter the texture of your hair and raise your chance of losing hair on your scalp or brows.

Hormone issues

For your endocrine system, which produces the hormones, to function properly, you need enough vitamins and minerals like vitamin D, vitamin B12, and selenium. 

If you don’t get enough of these nutrients, your hormones are probably out of balance. 

It can cause irregular menstrual cycles in women, but it can also have an impact on sexual and cognitive 

performance in both genders.


Fat insufficiency directly affects the absorption of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which leads to issues like weariness. 

In addition to the shortage of these essential minerals, there is also a lack of feeling of satiety brought on by a fat deficiency that can cause exhaustion in both physical and mental health.

Low immunity

If you regularly get unwell despite eating fruits, vegetables, and even some carbohydrates, it may be time to determine whether your body is getting enough fat. 

Your body isn’t absorbing enough nutrients even though you’re consuming them, which weakens your immune system because a lack of fat implies malabsorption.

Now that you are aware of the signs, you can quickly recognise them in order to prevent problems brought on by lack of fat.

How do you Diagnose Fat Deficiency?

The primary indicators of deficiency are the signs and symptoms displayed. For diagnosis, some biochemical indicators are used. Reduced linoleic and alpha-linolenic acid levels may signify a fatty acid deficiency. 

A lack of fat is indicated by the ratio of eicosatrienoic acid to arachidonic acid. Elevated oleic acid, which is converted to eicosatrienoic acid, is caused by the decreased availability of alpha-linolenic acid and linoleic acid. 

Therefore, a ratio greater than 0.2 (some say >0.4) indicates the presence of an essential fatty acid deficiency. Elevation in this ratio can take place even before clinical symptoms start to appear. 

Patients lacking in EFA have been found to have changes during platelet aggregation and liver function tests.

How to treat fat deficiency?

It is important to advise people with eating disorders or those who consume very little fat to get enough fats in their diets. Include healthy fats in your diet, such as nuts, seeds, and nut butters, to correct an essential fatty acid shortage.

For children, 2.7% of their entire daily calorie needs should come from essential fatty acids. Reversing the deficit and consuming dietary EFAs can be used to treat diseases brought on by a deficiency of fats.

It’s important to consult with your doctor before going ahead with any diet changes or treatment.

What diseases are caused by fat deficiency?

If you consume a lot of nuts and seeds, your fat deficiency is likely to disappear and improve your health. But in certain cases, you could still be fat deficit causing a few diseases such as

· Weaker immune system

· Hormonal imbalance

· Essential fatty acid (EFA) deficiency diseases

· Dermatitis

· Colon cancer

· Vitamin deficiency disease

Prevention of fat deficiency

By consuming enough fat, fat deficiency can be avoided. The best preventative method is to consume the proper kind and quantity of fats from food. People who are at risk for fat deficiencies should be informed about proper intake of healthy fats. 

It is recommended that 20% to 35% of total calories should come from fat in a balanced diet, Polyunsaturated fats should make up at least 10% of total calories, while linoleic acid should account for 2% to 4% of total calories.

Tips for creating a balanced diet 

The USDA recommends that you could consume up to 35% of your calories from fat.

However, not all fats are made equally. Trans fats should be avoided as much as possible. It’s safe to consume some saturated fats in your diet, such as those found in dairy, meat, or eggs.

However, try to get the majority of your fat from monounsaturated and polyunsaturated sources, such as:

  • Plant-based oils such as olives and sesame oil
  • Avocado
  • Nuts and seeds
  • Fatty fish and fish oil
  • Flax seeds
  • Chia seeds

When to consult a doctor?

Consult a doctor when you have any of the symptoms of fat deficiency for a persistent period. Follow the instructions given by your doctor to maintain a healthy fat balance.


Many biological processes in your body require dietary fat. Instead of switching between extreme low-fat and high-fat diets, your body will function best if you stick to a balanced diet that includes proper quantities of all meals.


What diseases are caused by fat deficiency?

A lack of fats can hasten a number of diseases and health issues caused by a deficiency of fats, most of which can be cured or controlled with the addition of the necessary fat. The lipid profile, skin, heart, and mental health can all be affected by a lack of fat.

Can fat deficiency be treated?

Yes, fat deficiency can be treated. You could consider including healthy fats in your diet, such as nuts, seeds, and nut butter, to manage the deficit of essential fatty acids.

What can a fat deficiency lead to?

Fat deficiency can lead to certain symptoms such as dry rashes, hair loss, a weakened immune system, and vitamin shortages.

Can you lose weight by eating healthy fats?

Healthy fats are essential for weight loss since they speed up your metabolism. Additionally, eating healthy fats increases the absorption of other important nutrients that speed up your metabolism. So, certainly, eating good fats can help you lose weight. Consume solely monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats.


The Information including but not limited to text, graphics, images and other material contained on this blog are intended for education and awareness only. No material on this blog is intended to be a substitute for professional medical help including diagnosis or treatment. It is always advisable to consult medical professional before relying on the content. Neither the Author nor Star Health and Allied Insurance Co. Ltd accepts any responsibility for any potential risk to any visitor/reader.

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