Celiac Disease

CELIAC DISEASE

Last Updated December 20th, 2021

Overview

Gluten is a kind of naturally occurring protein that is found in wheat, barley, rye and other related grains. Thus, it is present in a variety of everyday foods such as breads, cereals, soups and beer. Some people suffbreadm a digestive disorder that causes inflammation in the small intestine whenever they consume foods containing gluten. This is known as celiac disease and it is an autoimmune disorder. Unless they switch over to a gluten-free diet, the patient’s system can lose the ability to absorb other nutrients as well. It is estimated that as much as 0.3 to 1% of the global population suffers from this disease.

Definition

CELIAC DISEASE cautionCeliac disease is a chronic genetic autoimmune disorder of the small intestine. When a person suffering from this disease consumes any food containing gluten, an aberrant immune response causes inflammation in the small intestine. This eventually leads to permanent damage of the villi in the inner lining of the small intestine. The villi are long hair-like structures that are responsible for the absorption of fluids and nutrients such as vitamins and minerals from food as it passes through the small intestine.

Once diagnosed, the patient will be advised to switch over to a completely gluten-free diet so that the symptoms can be kept at bay. This also allows the intestinal villi to heal. However, if this disease goes untreated, the person’s small intestine permanently loses the ability to absorb a variety of nutrients, leaving the body feeling tired and malnourished. For instance, patients with celiac disease are very likely to develop iron-deficiency, leading to anemia. The ability of the small intestine to effectively absorb calcium, folate and vitamins A, D, E and K are also reduced.

Symptoms can manifest at any age. Both children, as well as adults, are known to suffer from this disease although it tends to affect adults more often.

What Causes Celiac Disease?

In individuals suffering from celiac disease, certain substances contained in gluten are mistaken by the immune system as a threat to the body. It attempts to fight this threat by producing antibodies. These antibodies end up causing the inner lining of the small intestine to become swollen and inflamed, damaging the intestinal villi. The function of the villi is to provide an increased surface area within the small intestine for the absorption of nutrients. In celiac disease, inflammation of the small intestine causes the villi to shrink, effectively reducing the ability of the organ to perform its designated function.

CELIAC DISEASE glutenTherefore, the direct cause of celiac disease is an abnormal immune response triggered by the consumption of foods containing gluten. Although celiac disease is an inherited disorder, not everyone who has the genes for it will necessarily develop this disorder. Those who are genetically susceptible will find that it tends to be triggered by stress, gastrointestinal infections or even pregnancy. Therefore, this disease is generally attributed to a mix of genetic and environmental factors.

Risk factors include:

  • Having a close family member suffering from celiac disease increases one’s own chances as much as tenfold.
  • Similarly, having a family member suffering from dermatitis herpetiformis.
  • Other autoimmune disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis and type 1 diabetes. This also includes autoimmune endocrine disorders such as thyroid disease or Addison’s disease.
  • Chromosomal abnormalities such as Down’s syndrome or Turner syndrome.
  • Ulcerative colitis and microscopic colitis, two kinds of inflammatory bowel disease.
  • Epilepsy.

What Are Some Symptoms?

As is often the case with autoimmune inflammatory disorders, there can be periods of varying severity of symptoms and the manifestations of the disease can vary widely from one individual to the next. For instance, some may lose weight while others might be overweight.

Patients with celiac disease typically suffer from certain gastrointestinal symptoms but there is also a range of other symptoms not directly related to the digestion. In fact, even the reproductive and nervous systems may be affected. One particular form of the disease, known as dermatitis herpetiformis, presents with an itchy rash appearing on both sides of the body and often in areas such as the elbows, knees, neck and upper back. This afflicts one in every five individuals with celiac disease. Possible symptoms include:

  • Indigestion.
  • Acid reflux.
  • Recurrent bouts of diarrhea or constipation.
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal bloating or gas.
  • Bone pain or joint pain.
  • Mouth ulcers.
  • Swollen ankles or swollen hands.
  • Migraine headaches.
  • Severe fatigue.
  • Itchy skin rash known as dermatitis herpetiformis.
  • Damaged enamel of the teeth.
  • Abnormal sensations such as numbness or tingling in the extremities.

As compared to adults, the disease manifests differently in children. Signs of celiac disease in infants and young children include:

  • Irritability.
  • Vomiting.
  • Distended belly.
  • Chronic diarrhea.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Poor growth or short stature.
  • Delayed onset of puberty.

What Are The Different Types of Celiac Disease?

CELIAC DISEASEThere are a number of different manifestations of Celiac disease, including:

  • Classical form: The patient exhibits the typical symptoms of celiac disease including abdominal bloating and diarrhea.
  • Atypical form: There may be little or no gastrointestinal disturbance. Instead, this form is more likely to present atypical symptoms such as osteoporosis, dermatitis herpetiformis, infertility, and anemia.
  • Silent form: Patients are usually asymptomatic, although blood tests and biopsies do indicate positive findings for celiac disease.
  • Latent form: This can have two main variants. The first includes patients diagnosed with celiac disease who have responded well to treatment and now show normal biopsy results although the blood may contain certain antibodies associated with the disease. The other category includes those who are currently asymptomatic but who are likely to eventually develop the disease.
  • Refractory Celiac Disease: This type is so named because it is resistant to normal modes of treatment. Symptoms tend to be more severe than in the other types. Only about 1-2% of those suffering from celiac disease are expected to develop this type. It is generally found to affect individuals over the age of 50. It is extremely rare in children.

Are There Likely To Be Any Complications?

When it remains untreated, celiac disease can lead to a number of other serious health problems such as diabetes and even cancer in some rare cases. Potential complications are listed below:  

  • Reduced ability of the small intestine to absorb vital nutrients can lead to anemia, folate deficiency and other nutritional deficiencies. In children, this can be responsible for reduced growth.
  • Lactose intolerance.
  • Bone disorders such as osteoporosis can result from the reduced absorption of calcium and vitamin D. This can also cause a bone disorder known as rickets.
  • Loss of fertility.
  • Pregnancy complications.
  • Seizures.
  • Increased risk of developing certain kinds of cancers of the gastrointestinal tract.

What Tests Are Needed To Diagnose It?

The following tests are helpful in making a diagnosis of celiac disease:

  • Physical examination and medical history.
  • Blood tests to check for the presence of certain antibodies such as tTG that indicate celiac disease. Testing the blood also helps detect certain nutritional deficiencies.
  • Stool samples are tested for the presence of fat.
  • Biopsy of a sample of tissue taken from the small intestine.

In order to ensure accurate results, the patient must make sure not to initiate a gluten-free diet before the blood test and intestinal biopsy have been completed.

Low FODMAP for Celiac Disease

The FODMAP diet is a diet that is prescribed to those who have chronic gastrointestinal symptoms such as gas, bloating, cramps, diarrhea or constipation. FODMAP diet consists of small carbohydrates in certain forms. If broken down the FODMAP consists of the following –

  • Fermentable – These can be broken down in the large intestine by bacteria.
  • Oligosaccharides – These are individual sugars that are joined in a chain. ‘Oilgo’ meaning ‘few’ and ‘saccharide’ meaning ‘sugar’.
  • Disaccharides – Double sugar molecules. ‘Di’ meaning two.
  • Monosaccharides – ‘mono’ meaning single. These are single sugar molecules.
  • And Polyols – These are sugar alcohols.

If these saccharides and sugar alcohols are not digested properly in the large intestine they tend to absorb water into the intestine and release carbon dioxide, hydrogen and or methane gas making the intestines stretch and expand.A low FODMAP diet, helps in relieving symptoms of digestive issues, but can also be used as a treatment for other medical conditions such as –

  • Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
  • Other forms of functional gastrointestinal disorders (FFID)
  • Small intestinal bacterial growth (SIBG)
  • Certain autoimmune conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis, eczema or multiple sclerosis.
  • Health issues that may have been triggered to certain foods.
  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD)

Celiac disease tends to occur in those who cannot tolerate gluten that is found in wheat, barley, and rye. It is important to know that gluten is not a FODMAP, but certain FODMAP foods do contain gluten such as fructose. Studies indicate that those who have gastrointestinal symptoms while on gluten-free diet could benefit from adopting a low-FODMAP diet to ease their symptoms.

Treatment and Prevention

Treatment – there is no known way to treat the celiac disease as it is an autoimmune disease.

  • Make sure that you stay away from gluten for the rest of your life.
  • Get a team of skilled physicians’ and dentitions to help you manage your disease.
  • Have proper and thorough knowledge of celiac disease and a gluten-free diet.

Prevention – there is no sure shot prevention methods for celiac disease. But there are methods to reduce the symptoms.

  • Eating gluten-free foods.
  • Avoiding grain and grain by-products.
  • Diagnosing the disease as early as possible.
  • Go for products that are an alternative to gluten like – corn, rice, millets, quinoa, soy etc.

 

Dos and Don'ts

Dos
  • Get to know gluten. Make sure to be aware of what form of gluten you can or cannot tolerate.
  • Check the ingredients whenever buying food,
  • Pay attention to serving size of the gluten product being consumed. If you can tolerate only a certain amount of gluten, make sure to consume only that much and not more.
Don'ts
  • Go to a restaurant unprepared.
  • Consume wheat or wheat products.
  • Consume any dairy products that may contain gluten.

 

 

 

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Experts reveal the safest ways to perform an enema at home The idea of pushing some up your rectal area might make you queasy but an enema could actually…
Lauric Acid: 8 health benefits you can derive from coconuts Appropriate use of saturated fats containing lauric acid can provide you numerous health benefits. This is the main…
Is bronchitis contagious? And how to prevent this infection? It is acute bronchitis that is contagious which means you can contract it from another person or you…
Cordyceps: How the Caterpillar fungus works as a proven cancer-shield Strange as it may sound, but cordyceps or "caterpillar fungus", a fungus variety native to the Himalayas may…
apolipoprotein a1 test
Apolipoprotein -A1 (APO-A1) Test Apolipoprotein A-I (Apo-A1) constitutes 70% of protein content in high-density lipoprotein (HDL) and helps in lipid metabolism.
SIBO Diet: The important dos and don’ts of this gut-healing diet A SIBO diet is a diet that works by eliminating certain sugars from your diet and adding fibers…
Moringa drink
Moringa: This could be the most nutrient-dense food known to us! Moringa is a lush green tree brimming with over 90 essential nutrients required for a healthy mind and…
CERULOPLASMIN- triple marker
Triple Marker Test A triple marker test is an important prenatal test that is performed to detect the presence of chromosomal…
L-theanine attention
L-Theanine: Better sleep, higher focus, and many other benefits Did you know that L-theanine found in green tea can make you sleep better and be focused at…
Coffee Enema: Turn your favorite morning beverage into a powerful colon cleanser The wonders of coffee are not just limited to waking you up every morning. You can now use…
Sharpen your brain with these top brain-friendly foods! Did you know your diet could decide how razor sharp your memory is? Or that what you eat…
cytomegalovirus iGG
Cytomegalovirus (CMV)- IgG Test The cytomegalovirus IgG is the immunoglobulin protein produced by our immune system when the body is infected by…
stevia side effects
Stevia: A healthy sugar substitute or yet another risky additive? Stevia is a plant native to South America.  It has been used as a natural sugar substitute and…
PROLACTIN-(PRL)
Prolactin Test (PRL) Prolactin or PRL is a lactogenic hormone produced to induce milk production in lactating mothers. PRL test measures…
6 arguments in favour of glucosamine and where can you find it Studies have shown that glucosamine works by preventing the breakdown of cartilage of the joints. This is usually…
Spinach: The ultimate way to boost health with this green superfood! Spinach is a green superfood that ranks high in both taste and nutrition. Read more to discover how…
Ca 19.9 test
CA19.9 Test CA 19.9 is a cancer antigen that exists on the surface of cancer-causing cells. The levels of CA…
Top 6 remedies to treat a razor burn at home Symptoms of razor burn include bumps on the skin, redness, and irritation of the skin. Find easy and…
hYdroxycut pills
Hydroxycut: How safe are these so-called weight loss supplements? Hydroxycut is a blend of several different ingredients formulated to promote weight loss; powered by a key weight…
top 10 deadliest diseases
What are the top 10 deadliest diseases and what is causing them? What are the largest killers of human lives across the globe? Which diseases are the most fatal ones?…
kefir bottle
Kefir: Top reasons why this probiotic drink should be consumed by you Yet another remarkable fermented food, kefir is a much healthier version of yogurt. These chewy white grains can…
Kava: Is it the healthy substitute for alcohol you have been waiting for? Native to the beautiful South Pacific islands, Kava is a famous beverage rooted in the local culture. It…
Fibromyalgia fatigue
HCG Diet: The dangers of using this diet to lose weight HCG is a natural hormone produced by both men and women that corresponds to fertility. But how is…
EMG electromyography
EMG- Electromyography EMG detects the presence, location, and extent of diseases that damage the nerves such motor neuron disease. Electromyography…
glutamine workout
Glutamine: Why is this the right choice for muscle-gain supplement? Glutamine can help you gain muscles and build higher immunity. Read more to find out how you can…
HSV-IgM test
Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV)-IgM Test The HSV-IgM class antibody is produced by the body a few days after an initial HSV infection and…
These are the top foods to increase your hemoglobin count It is important to add iron-rich foods into your diet in order to increase hemoglobin. Deficiency of hemoglobin could…
alcohol toxic
7 startling facts that will make you quit alcohol today Does drinking really make you friendly and happy? How many calories does a can of cold beer add…
blood elements analysis
Vitamin Profile Your doctor will recommend you undergo the vitamin profile test if you are showing signs of either vitamin…
Turner syndrome and infertility
Infertility profile (women) The infertility profile tests in women are conducted to form a complete picture of the hormonal balance and…
tonometry
Tonometry Tonometry uses a device called tonometer to measure the pressure inside the eye. This pressure is depends upon…
complement c4 test
Complement 4 (C4) Test The Complement 4 or C4 test measures the level of the protein in the bloodstream, and is primarily…
ureteroscopy
Ureteroscopy Ureteroscopy is the diagnostic procedure which is used for the detection of the kidney stones in addition to…
shakeology woman
Meal replacement or protein drink? Learn all about Shakeology and its claims Shakeology from Beachbody claims to be the most suitable shake that can aid in weight loss, regulate blood…
Bronchoscopy procedure
Bronchoscopy Bronchoscopy is a procedure where in a scope is inserted into the lung pathway to observe any growth…
Keto diet healthy
Keto Diet: Did you know you could eat fats to burn fats? Keto diet - A wonder diet that lets you eat fats and lose weight too! Read on to…
green poop causes
Green poop : What are the reasons and how can you correct it Ever sneak a peek down the toilet only to shockingly find green poop? Why does our poop turn…
Echocardiogram
Echocardiography – ECHO Echocardiography (commonly known as ECHO) is an imaging modality (similar to ultrasonography) used to visualize the interior of…
creatinine
Creatinine Test The level of creatinine in the blood is a significant indicator of the health of your kidneys. This…
Jack in the box fast food
Jack In the Box : The perils of surging fast food culture in the USA Jack in the Box - How a culture of fast-food can clog your arteries, weaken your heart, fatten…
beta hcg test
Beta hCG Test A Beta hCG test measures the level of human gonadotropin hormones present in the blood that is primarliy…
Proteinuria and blood pressure
Hypertension Profile Hypertension profile is a panel of blood tests done to analyse the cause of hypertension or high blood…
Crossfit with rope
CrossFit: Now get the perfectly sculpted body with this explosive gym routine CrossFit is a fitness regimen that makes use of high-intensity exercises in a shorter period to achieve muscle…
GM Diet: The fastest way to lose weight or yet another hoax diet? General Motors started this trend of extreme dieting for 7 straight days to ensure its employees were able…
vital organ diseases
Common diseases that could cripple your vital organs Brain, heart, kidney, lungs, and liver - these vital organs are indeed vital for your survival. However, these…
free thyroxine ft4
Free thyroxine test (FT4) The FT4 or free thyroxine test is used to detect the level of free thyroxine of FT4 thyroid…
How to correctly perform nasal irrigation using a Neti Pot? Neti pot has been a part of Ayurveda since centuries. This ancient tool is extremely effective in treating…
Top reasons why you need to pay attention to your vitamin B6 intake Vitamin B6- An essential water-soluble vitamin. Its deficiency leads to physical changes such as sores & glossy tongue…
Dragon Fruit – Blessing from Nature’s Basket Dragon fruit is packed with nutrients but low on calories. It is the dream food that can help…
blood ketone test
Blood Ketone (D3HB) Test The Blood Ketone Test measures and monitors the levels of ketone in the blood which is usually performed…
Milk Thistle skin
Milk Thistle: Find possible cures for fatal diseases in these purple blooms Milk thistle is well-known for treating liver conditions. However, did you know that it comes with a plethora…
aspartame or sugar
Aspartame – Hidden truths about this storm in a teacup Aspartame, the artificial sweetener, has gone under the scanner on several occasions for allegedly doing more harm than…
understanding addiction
Addiction explained: An obsession that could cost you your life Is addiction a behavioral disorder? Or is it a chronic disease? How does addiction cause chemical and structural…
amylase test
Amylase Test Amylase test is done by checking the level of this protein in the blood sample and also in…
kidney stones
Kidney stones Kidney stones are solid substances made up of crystals. They can be of various sizes. Treatment depend on…
cytomegalovirus igm test
Cytomegalo Virus (CMV) – IgM Test The CMV antibodies include both IgM and IgG antibodies which are the immune system's response to a CMV…
folate test
Folate test The Folate test measures and monitors the levels of folic acid in the blood. This test is also…
Okra: How can this nutrient-dense vegetable help you fight diabetes? Okra is a food which is rich in nutrients and minerals which are extremely essential for a healthy…
Juice Plus: Can you really replace actual fruits with pills?  Juice Plus supplements intend to fill nutritional gaps present in our daily diet. But how successful have they…
stress depressed anxiety
Are you depressed or just stressed? Know when to see a doctor Why are some people more anxious than others? Is being depressed the same as feeling sad? Have you…
Cardiolipin Antibody (ACL) –IgG Test The cardiolipin antibody IgG are responsible for the abnormal formation of clots in veins and arteries or phlebitis…
lipoprotein A
Lipoprotein (A) Test Lipoprotein (A) test is used to measure and monitor the levels of LDL(Low-Density Lipoprotein) in the bloodstream in…
Diabetes blood test
Diabetic Profile The diabetic profile is a set of tests used for testing and monitoring the various kinds of Diabetes…
Anti-Inflammatory foods: 18 foods to a disease-free you Anti-inflammatory foods are the foods which are known to reduce the inflammation as well as the pain from…

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