Celiac Disease

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Celiac disease and Crohn's disease are both diseases related to inflammation of the intestines. Crohn’s disease is more common in people who have celiac disease. Unlike Crohn's disease, celiac disease symptoms usually go away when patients follow a gluten-free diet. Symptoms of both conditions include abdominal pain, anemia, diarrhea and short stature. 

Celiac Disease

If you have celiac disease, the underlying problem is an intolerance to gluten. You will have an inflammatory response to gluten when your intestine comes in contact with it. Gluten is a compound that’s derived from wheat and similar grains, and gives the doughy feeling to breads. Celiac disease is much more commonly seen in people who have insulin-dependent diabetes. The blood test to screen for celiac disease is accurate about 98 percent of the time. If you've been recently diagnosed with celiac, your intestinal lining may have some damage to it. This may actually inhibit some of the absorption of important vitamins and minerals in your diet. 

It's important to follow a gluten-free diet completely so that your intestinal lining can heal to resume normal absorption. Individuals with celiac disease often have lactose intolerance, so it's important to make sure you're getting enough calcium and vitamin D from sources other than dairy. If you don't get enough calcium and vitamin D, over time this may affect bone mineralization and bone density. Other key nutrient considerations for individuals with celiac disease are making sure that you're getting enough of the alternative grains that provide fibre, B vitamins, iron and zinc. Things like rice, brown rice, wild rice and quinoa can be excellent sources of these nutrients. 

Crohn's Disease

Crohn’s disease can affect any part of the gastrointestinal tract, and usually affects patients between the ages of 13 and 30. Blood tests for celiac disease and IBD test for different characteristics, allowing your physician to make the right diagnosis. Endoscopy or biopsy may also be used. 

For general management of Crohn's disease, nutritionists recommend a high-fibre diet, which includes lots of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds and lean protein sources. For people experiencing flare-ups of the disease, a low-fibre diet is recommended, which includes eating fewer fruits and vegetables, steaming vegetables, avoiding raw nuts, seeds, legumes and beans, avoiding gas-producing vegetables such as broccoli or cabbage and increasing the lean protein in your diet.

Talk to your nutritionist if you'd like more information on celiac disease and Crohn's disease.

Visit HealthChoicesFirst.com for more videos and resources on healthy eating.

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that involved a sensitivity to gluten. When a Celiac patient consumes food with gluten it sets up an immune response that attacks the lining of the intestines causing inflammation and destruction of the villi. Once the villi are destroyed the bodies ability to absorb nutrients becomes compromised and patient become malnutritioned. For more information please view our complimentary videos on Celiac disease and other related topics. Seeing your registered dietican can often help.

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