Understanding Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is a disease in which individuals cannot eat foods that contain gluten. Gluten is a protein whichoriginates in a variety of grains such as rye, wheat, and barley. What happens when an individual with Celiac disease eats foods with gluten in triggers an response in their immune system that is not normal. The reaction causes damage to the interior of the small intestines so that nutrients are not absorbed as well from the foods that were eaten.

Celiac disease can lead to osteoporosis, anemia, and raises the risk of lymphoma. Children with celiac disease have slow growth and weakened bones. Parents should watch for signs of feeling weak for several weeks, diarrhea, and loss of weight. The cause of celiac disease is unknown at this time; however, if close members of the family have the disease the chances of your or another loved one could also have the disease.

Symptoms of celiac disease include bloating, gas, changes in regular bowel movements, losing weight, fatigue, and weakness. Some individuals will also experience vomiting after eating anything with gluten.

In order to confirm you or your child has celiac disease a multitude of tests will be performed. Once it is determined, other tests will be conducted to ensure that other problems have not arisen from the disease including anemia.

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The most important thing for a person with celiac disease to do is to stay away from foods with gluten as well as ensure that cross contamination does not occur. If you are preparing meals that contain gluten for other members of your family, you must ensure to thoroughly clean all tools, countertops, and other areas before preparing gluten free meals. Just a very minute amount of gluten can cause issues to a person that has celiac disease.

Foods that should be completely avoided include triticale, barley, rye, wheat, ale and beer. You must read all ingredients to ensure that there are no ingredients that contain gluten. Foods that you can eat include fish, fruit, eggs, meat, and vegetables as well as flours that are made from corn, potatoes, buckwheat, and rice. Gluten may also be found in other items besides food products including vitamins, lipstick, and medicine.

The hardest part of all is finding quality recipes for gluten free diets that help you prepare nutritional meals that your family will love and protect your family member that has celiac disease. In most cases, going out to eat or eating at friends houses is going to be very tough unless you can find a restaurant that serves gluten free meals and friends understand the importance of a gluten free diet. Article courtesy of Only Gluten Free Recipes.