Mycobacteria compete with your body for calories, and NTM lung disease often has the unwelcome symptom of loss of appetite. Both of these lead to weight loss, which can further weaken you and make it harder for your immune system to fight the infection.

Because it is important to maintain healthy eating habits and a healthy weight, you may want to consult with a dietician or nutritional counselor for advice on what to eat and how much of it. If you do, make sure he or she knows of and has a basic understanding of NTM lung disease. It’s likely that this person has not heard of it before, so it will be up to you as the patient to educate them so they can devise a proper nutrition regimen for them. Ask your primary care physician, pulmonologist or I.D. doctor for referrals as they may know of a nutritional specialist who has already worked with other NTM patients.

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