The month of May is Celiac Awareness month but a lot of people aren't sure if they have it or how it can develop. In fact, some people even wonder: is celiac disease real? Especially given the popularity of gluten-free products and diets. It turns out celiac disease is real and is very common.
How common is celiac disease? About 200,000 cases are diagnosed every year in the US.
How do they test for celiac disease? A simple blood test can help diagnose it. One blood test looks for elevated levels of certain antibody proteins to identify if an immune reaction to gluten is happening. Another blood test is a genetic blood test that looks for antigens to rule out celiac disease. (Source: Mayo Clinic)
A blood test is the first step to knowing if you have celiac disease. Next, a doctor will order a biopsy of the small intestine to determine the amount of damage already done. If celiac disease is confirmed, eliminating gluten is the best way to stop any further damage. However, about only 40% of people have positive blood tests for celiac disease. (Source: Today's Dietitian)
What are the symptoms of celiac disease? Diarrhea is the number one symptom. It will occur after eating gluten containing foods. But there are many more symptoms.
Does any of this sound like you? 👉Diarrhea and/or constipation, and intestinal discomfort 👉Inflammation 👉Congestion, coughing, wheezing 👉Brain fog, difficulty recalling words, short term memory issues 👉Headaches and migraines 👉Hives, flushing, and itchy skin 👉Fatigue and malaise 👉Sensitivity to fragrances and chemicals If so, you may have celiac disease or something else is causing your gut to be unhealthy. Learning how to make it healthy so you can stop suffering can be very confusing! There is so much information out there, it is hard to know what will work for you.
I am a Certified Holistic Nutritionist obsessed with teaching people just like you how to heal their gut. I offer a FREE 30 minute call where we will talk about your specific symptoms and start creating a plan on how to heal your gut using the Simply Great Health program. How would eliminating your symptoms improve your life? You could: ✅Be more present with your children ✅Thrive in your career ✅Improve your communication and your relationships ✅Have more fun! ✅Move your body and improve your fitness ✅Lose weight and feel better about yourself ✅Be able to cook healthy meals for you and your family ✅Take an active vacation ✅Reclaim your life! Simply Great Health is a customized 5 Step plan that heals your gut and fits your busy lifestyle. Book your call directly here. It’s very simple. No jumping through hoops and NO PRESSURE. If we determine it’s not a fit, we’ll go our separate ways for now. If it is a fit, we can take the next step and get you started on the path to healing.
Having celiac disease or an unhealthy gut can lead to frequent colds and flu's since 70% of the immune system is in the gut. It is really important to pay attention to our gut health so our body can fight pathogens.
What about celiac and coronavirus? If you have celiac disease, are you more at risk to get coronavirus? There is a lot more to learn about coronavirus. The Celiac Disease Foundation states that older individuals with celiac disease may be at a small increased risk of worse outcomes with coronavirus.
The best way to manage it is a gluten-free diet. However, if you aren't diagnosed with celiac disease or you aren't feeling symptoms, going gluten-free may not be a lifestyle you are thinking about. The truth is that everyone would feel better by reducing gluten or going gluten-free.
The gut is damaged from gluten even if you aren't experiencing symptoms. The long term consequences can be just as bad. Diseases and illnesses such as frequent migraines, chronic fatigue, Type 1 diabetes, infertility, osteoporosis, liver disease, gastrointestinal cancers and rheumatoid arthritis, can all occur due to gluten sensitivity.
Unfortunately, gluten is hidden in many products. Soy sauce, dressings, medications, flavored coffee, broth and matzo are some of the more unusual foods that contain gluten. By learning where gluten can be hiding it helps us make more informed choices when buying and cooking food.
The good news is by reducing and/or eliminating gluten from our lifestyle you will feel better in a couple of days. We don't realize how good our bodies are meant to feel until we make a lifestyle change. Even energy levels improve when we stop eating so much gluten. It takes years for the intestines to heal but the good news is they can.
Gluten-free cooking is a lot easier now than in the past with so many great gluten-free products available. Even pasta is made from lentils and chickpeas! It will take some getting used to eating gluten-free or gluten-reduced. After all, our lifestyle is influenced by how we were taught to eat and cook as a child. If we have been served a sandwich for lunch almost everyday of our lives, it can be very hard to choose to make something different.
Making changes in our lifestyle can be hard! But by taking small achievable steps everyday, a new routine is learned. Pretty soon, the new habit is simply part of how we live. Below are delicious gluten-free recipes to try. Even if you are reducing gluten, not eliminating it all together, your health will benefit.
Life is too short not to have dessert, especially when it is gluten-free. These gluten-free cookies, fruit bakes and cakes are so good you'll wonder why you never made them before!
I hope you enjoyed learning the facts about celiac disease and how to test for it. It is amazing that 40% of people don't have any symptoms! That is why reducing gluten in our daily lives is so important. Keeping the gut healthy is key to living an illness and disease free life. Not eating gluten does not have to be boring or restrictive. The recipes I shared prove that!
Do you think you will try any of the above? If so, leave me a comment below.