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World Health Day: Everything You Need To Know About Celiac Disease

By Dr. Nikita Toshi +2 more

One disorder that is currently doing the rounds and is in many discussions is Celiac disease. This disease is a disorder that is triggered by insensitivity to gluten. Wondering what Celiac disease is? Read to know – what are the symptoms, the effects and the treatment.  

What is Celiac disease?

Simply put, Celiac disease also called celiac sprue or non-tropical sprue is a digestive issue that is triggered by insensitivity to gluten. Gluten is a protein that is found in barley, rye and wheat. People who are intolerant to gluten get rashes, diarrhoea or constipation, nausea and other digestive problems. Globally, every 1 person out of 100 suffers from this gluten intolerance.

For a person who is suffering from Celiac disease, their immune response to gluten tends to destroy the cells in the small intestine. As a result of this, the body is unable to digest the nutrients. If left untreated and unaddressed, this disease can cause severe complications like weakening of bones, malnutrition, infertility and nervous system issues.

People who are gluten intolerant need to eliminate all forms of gluten from their diet. This includes bread, baked products, beer, items made from wheat and even products where gluten is used as a stabilising agent.

Symptoms of Celiac disease

If you suspect that you or your loved one is suffering from Celiac disease, watch out for the following symptoms:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Unexplained weight loss or gain
  • Abdominal bloating
  • Diarrhoea or constipation
  • Foul-smelling stool which also includes pale, loose or greasy stools (steatorrhoea)
  • Fatigue
  • Reduced functioning of the spleen
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Weakening of the bones
  • Tingling in hands and feet
  • Joint pain  
  • Seizures
  • Irregular menstruation
  • Anaemia
  • Skin disorder
  • Headaches  

Effects of Celiac disease

Like any other disease, Celiac disease should not be ignored. If you suspect you suffer from this, you must visit your doctor at the earliest. Experts say that people who suffer from this disorder are at greater risk of developing heart issues and intestinal cancers if the celiac disease remains unaddressed.  

Celiac disease treatment

At present, there is no medical treatment or permanent cure for Celiac disease but your doctor can help you manage the condition well. People who suffer from this disorder must avoid gluten and food items containing gluten so as to not trigger the autoimmune response. The food items that must be avoided are:

  • Bread
  • Beer
  • Barley
  • Rye
  • Wheat

The food items that are safe to eat are:

  • Vegetables and fruits
  • Dairy  
  • Beans and legumes
  • Nuts
  • Meat
  • Poultry
  • Seafood
  • Gluten-free grains like ragi and quinoa

Also Read: Sea Moss: Uses, Benefits, Side Effects & More! 

Who is at risk of contracting Celiac disease?

Celiac disease is genetic and 1 in 20 people have the chance of developing intolerance to gluten if their sibling or either parent suffers from it. While people could be suffering from Celiac disease their entire life, it is often detected between the ages of 20 and 30. It is important to not ignore any of the above symptoms and if any of your family members suffers from Celiac disease, be extra careful and mindful.

Celiac disease is a digestive disorder that can have very serious consequences if it is not diagnosed. This autoimmune disease in which the body is unable to absorb nutrients caused by an intolerance to gluten must be diagnosed and people suffering from this must stop gluten consumption. Ignoring this can cause other autoimmune disorders like diabetes and MS. There are many gluten-free food items that are available easily, making it not very hard to follow a gluten-free diet. Stay healthy and stay happy.

Also Read: A Comprehensive Guide: Is Sourdough Bread Healthy or Just a Trend?

Disclaimer: The information provided here is for educational/awareness purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical treatment by a healthcare professional and should not be relied upon to diagnose or treat any medical condition. The reader should consult a registered medical practitioner to determine the appropriateness of the information and before consuming any medication. PharmEasy does not provide any guarantee or warranty (express or implied) regarding the accuracy, adequacy, completeness, legality, reliability or usefulness of the information; and disclaims any liability arising thereof.

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