Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Symptoms Evaluation similar conditions Treatment specialist Home Care diet stress warning signs Outlook Underlying Cause

Hypochondriasis Home Care

Home care for hypochondriasis includes:

Hypochondriasis Diet

Strategies for a healthy diet in someone with hypochondriasis include:

  • Limit your intake of fat to 30% of your total calories.
  • 10% to 15% of your total calories should be in the form of monounsaturated fats, such as olive oil, canola oil and peanut oil.
  • Consume only unsaturated fats that are low in cholesterol.
  • Consume less than 300 milligrams of cholesterol a day.
  • Eat dietary fiber: whole grains are best.
  • Avoid fad diets.
  • Check with your doctor about B vitamin supplements. Some people may benefit from B vitamins.

Key Dietary Recommendations for Chronic Disease Prevention
Energy (calories)to maintain BMI < 25
Total fats< or = to 30% of total daily calories
Saturated fats< 7% of total daily calories
Polyunsaturated fats< 10% of total daily calories
Monounsaturated fats< 13% of total daily calories
Cholesterol< or = to 300 mg per day
Dietary fiber25-30 grams per day
Fiber type3:1 insoluble to soluble fiber
Sodium< or = to 1,500 mg per day
Calcium 9-24 yrs1,200-1,500 mg per day
Calcium 25-50 yrs1,000 mg per day
Calcium 51-65 yrs1,200 mg per day
Calcium >65 yrs1,500 mg per day
Vitamin D 9-50 yrs200 IU per day
Vitamin D 51-70 yrs400 IU per day
Vitamin D >70 yrs600 IU per day
Folic acid400 micrograms (ug) per day
Fruits & vegetables5-7 servings per day
Alcohol (men)< or = to 2 drinks per day
Alcohol (women)< or = to 1 drink per day

Hypochondriasis Stress

Tips to manage stress in someone with hypochondriasis:

  • Accept what you cannot change.
  • Ask for help if you need it.
  • Associate with people you enjoy and who treat you well.
  • Consider life as challenges to seek not obstacles to avoid.
  • Do not be dominated by one thing such as work or relationships.
  • Do not feel guilty when you have to say "no" to extra duties or tasks. Respect your limitations.
  • Energize your body with regular exercise.
  • Engage in hobbies.
  • Find the joy in giving.
  • Fuel your body with healthy foods and avoid drugs and alcohol.
  • Get a regular fresh air and sunshine.
  • Have the courage to be imperfect.
  • Keep your sleep habits regular.
  • Make a list of all the stresses that cause you distress. Dispose of the ones you can and reduce your exposure to the others as much as possible.
  • Pamper yourself with simple pleasures that give you joy.
  • Practice relaxation and meditation.
  • Realize that you are responsible for how you feel.
  • Reevaluate and rearrange your priorities.
  • Remember it is all right to cry.
  • Schedule time for fun. Laughter dissolves tension.
  • Seek professional help with overwhelming hard to solve problems.
  • Take a few minutes of quiet time each day just for you to rejuvenate.
  • Talk with someone you trust, it can be the best medicine.
  • Try new experiences.
  • Strictly avoiding stimulants may be all that is necessary in some people. This includes:

Hypochondriasis Warning Signs

Notify your doctor if you have hypochondriasis and any of the following:

  • You are unable to carry out normal daily activities
  • Worsening depression
  • Thoughts of hurting yourself
  • Thoughts of hurting others

Continue to Hypochondriasis Outlook

Last Updated: Dec 16, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
Copyright DSHI Systems, Inc. Powered by: FreeMD - Your Virtual Doctor

PubMed Hypochondriasis References
  1. Barsky AJ, Ahern DK. Cognitive behavior therapy for hypochondriasis: a randomized controlled trial. JAMA. 2004 Mar 24;291(12):1464-70. [15039413]
  2. Creed F, Barsky A. A systematic review of the epidemiology of somatisation disorder and hypochondriasis. J Psychosom Res. 2004 Apr;56(4):391-408. [15094023]
  3. Hiller W, Leibbrand R, Rief W, Fichter MM. Differentiating hypochondriasis from panic disorder. J Anxiety Disord. 2005;19(1):29-49. [15488366]
FreeMD is provided for information purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for evaluation and treatment by a physician. Please review our terms of use.