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Metabolic conditions affect all the cells in the body. They are inherited which means that they are part of the genes you get from your parents that also influence the features you have such as your hair colour. There are thousands of genes in each of your cells.

The word metabolism refers to the chemical reactions that take place in the cells in your body. These reactions change the food we eat into energy to enable us to do everyday activities including thinking and moving. You can find out more about what metabolic conditions are here alongside a list that explains some of the words that are often used when they are being described.

There are hundreds of Inherited Metabolic Disorders (IMDs) and they are very complex and can be difficult to describe.Each condition has different symptoms and impacts on the body, some are managed with diet and medication which you can read about on the tabs above.

Two of the ones that are more common are MCADD and PKU.

MCADD causes the body to have problems with breaking down fat to use as an energy source.

PKU is a condition where the body is unable to process the amino acid called phenylalanine, which is found in protein containing foods.

You can access more information about these conditions on the links above. Organisations that have information on some other metabolic conditions include BIMDG and Metabolic Support UK. Your nurse specialist and hospital team are there to support you and answer any questions and will be able to help you understand your condition and its specific impact on you.