Malnutrition results when the body does not get the right amount of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients it needs to maintain healthy tissues and organ function. Malnutrition can result from undernutrition --the case with anorexia nervosa --as well as overnutrition (obesity). The effects of malnutrition caused by undernutrition are devastating to the body's ability to function as well as to the thinking and behavior of the sufferer. Many eating disorder symptoms are the result of malnutrition. Balanced refeeding is considered the first priority for medical, emotional, and cognitive recovery, until patients reach sustained physiologic balance. See Minnesota starvation experiment article.

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