Celiac disease is a disease that damages the small intestine which can cause the body to fail to absorb nutrients from food. There is no cure for celiac disease. The only effective treatment is a gluten-free diet for celiac disease.
A natural protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, gluten is present in many different foods and other products. People with celiac disease must be careful to avoid all products that contain gluten including some medicines, a variety of healthcare products, and several foods.
The immune system of someone with celiac disease is hypersensitive to gluten. When gluten is consumed, the immune system reacts by damaging the small intestines. Therefore, people with celiac disease need to avoid consuming any foods or products that contain gluten.
A diet for celiac disease restricts the consumption of products that contain gluten including most grains, breads, pasta, cereal, and many processed foods. Despite these restrictions, diets for celiac disease contain a large variety of foods.
People with celiac disease can eat gluten free starches like rice and potatoes instead of starches that contain wheat, barley, or rye. A diet for celiac disease, like most diets should, contains foods from all the basic food groups.
Lean meat that is not breaded, vegetables, rice, and fruit are the major components of the diet for celiac disease. Nuts, beans, corn, and seeds are allowable foods by a celiac disease diet.
Some foods may be mistaken as they even though they contain gluten. For example, potato chips are made from potatoes and potatoes are gluten-free, but many potato chips contain gluten.
Soy sauce, potato chips, hot dogs, sausage, cold cuts, and some candy can also contain gluten even though they are not foods normally associated with rye, wheat, or barley. It is important for people with celiac disease to carefully check food labels for evidence of gluten.
A common problem with following a special diet is a feeling of being restricted which can lead to strong urges to cheat on a diet. These urges to cheat can be reduced by avoiding eating the same foods and trying new gluten-free recipes for a variety.
The damage that has been done to the small intestines interferes with the body’s ability to absorb vitamins, especially some B vitamins and fulate. The physician may prescribe the use of specific vitamins for a patient with celiac disease.