Celiac Disease – What You Need to Know

Celiac disease (CD) is a digestive autoimmune disease characterized by an immune reaction against the intestinal walls after consuming gluten-rich foods. The cause of this illness is not clearly understood; however, it is thought to be a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

The signs and symptoms of Celiac disease

  • Weight loss
  • Iron-deficiency anemia
  • Fatigue
  • Fragile bones
  • Skin disorders
  • Irregular menstrual cycle
  • Digestive symptoms – diarrhea, bloating, gas, abdominal cramps, and a feeling of being sick.
  • Neurological symptoms –neurological clinical manifestations include seizures, ataxia, and numbness/tingling of the extremities.
  • Increased rate of miscarriages – In a 2008 study, a gluten-free diet was found to improve the outcome of pregnancy in women previously diagnosed with celiac disease.

The treatment options for Celiac Disease

We currently have no cure for this condition, and the only viable option is to exclude gluten-containing foods from the patient’s diet. Taking vitamins and mineral supplements is advised for individuals with celiac disease. In rare circumstances an individual may experience celiac crisis. These individuals often have severe nutritional deficiencies caused  by untreated celiac disease. In such cases rehydration, correction of electrolyte imbalance and corticosteroids (ex. budesonide, prednisone) are used to stabilize the individual.

What to eat if you have celiac disease?

Watching what you eat is indispensable to manage celiac disease. Here are some foods that are safe to eat with celiac disease:

Fresh meat and fish

Fresh meat and fish are mainly composed of protein and healthy fats. Moreover, they are gluten-free and barely contain any carbohydrates.

However, not all meats were created equal because some “processed” meats are be loaded with gluten-rich ingredients. These meats include:

  • Any meat, poultry, or fish that has been breaded
  • Proteins that are combined with wheat-based soy sauce
  • Seitan

Whole grains

Most whole grains are gluten-free; however, it is always a good idea to check the labels before buying a certain product.

In some cases, however, even the whole grains that are naturally gluten-free get contaminated with gluten during the production process in facilities that also handle gluten-rich products.

On the other hand, there are some grains to avoid, including all forms of wheat, rye, barley, and triticale.

Fruits and vegetables

  • Bananas
  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Mushrooms
  • Berries
  • Peaches
  • Green beans
  • Potatoes and corn
  • Broccoli and cauliflower

Other foods

  • Rice
  • Nuts
  • Seeds
  • Amaranth
  • Buckwheat
  • Eggs
  • Some dairy products

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that affects millions of people. The symptoms of this condition can be very subtle or devastating. If you believe you have celiac disease, telemedicine makes it possible for you to get the care you deserve. Schedule a virtual consultation with a Telakai Health online Provider and get on the road to recovery. Schedule your visit today.