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We know that some people have gluten sensitivity – maybe as many as 20 million Americans actually. When consuming too much gluten there might be some physical symptoms. But Celiac Disease is a little different– it’s an autoimmune disorder where the body gets a bit “upset” every time that gluten is eaten. Inflammation and damage occur in the small intestines, and nutrients cannot be absorbed.
Dietary treatment for Celiac Disease is to provide symptom relief, get you back to more energy ad better health.
A Gluten-Free diet = NO foods containing sources of gluten – wheat, barley, rye, malt &brewer’s yeast.
Other Gluten Free foods: vegetables, fruit, nuts and seeds, dairy, fish, poultry, beef and pork. You just need to be sure that they are not prepared with gluten-containing additives or coatings.
And there are some great Gluten-free snack options: gluten-free tortilla chips with hummus or salsa, popcorn cooked in oil, peanut butter on rice crackers, or how about a snack mix with gluten-free corn chex, nuts and dried fruit. So many healthy options. Homemade and made-from-scratch is the way to go when you can. You will also want to be sure to avoid cross contamination in your kitchen, keeping work areas, appliances, and toasters clean.
I continually receive questions about celiac disease and a gluten-free diet. Since celiac disease affects 1 in133 Americans, this is not surprising. In celiac disease, the body is “allergic” to the protein gluten and the lining of the intestinal walls become inflamed and irritated if gluten-containing foods are eaten.
Typical symptoms of untreated celiac disease:
Dermatitis herpetiformis is when the skin has an allergic reaction to gluten. The skin becomes very itchy and develops blistering skin lesions, typically on the elbows, knees and shoulders.
The only treatment for celiac disease is a gluten-free diet. Those with celiac disease should avoid all forms of
Look for gluten-free products from Arrowhead Mills (www.arrowheadmills.com) and Bob’s Red Mill (www.bobsredmill.com).
Although those with celiac disease must avoid certain foods, there are many grains and starches that are still okay, such as rice, corn, legumes, millet, quinoa and potatoes. Also, many healthy foods are still okay to eat too: fruits and vegetables; dairy products (low fat milk, yogurt and cheese); nuts and seeds; eggs, fish, poultry and red meats; oils; and herbs and spices.
October is National Celiac Disease Awareness Month. Celiac Disease is an inherited autoimmune disorder that affects about 1 person out of every 133. Researchers at the U. of Maryland School of Medicine have found it is on the rise in the elderly. Since 1972 Celiac Disease in the U.S has doubled every 15 years.
In Celiac Disease, the body cannot digest the protein gluten. Classic symptoms of Celiac Disease include
Gluten is found in wheat, wheat bran & wheat germ; barley and rye. This includes farina, most pasta & couscous, many cereals (Raisin Bran, Wheaties, Total, Grapenuts & Shredded Wheat).
Plan meals and snacks around gluten-free foods:
Thicken soups, stews, etc. with tapioca, cornstarch & potato starch rather than flour.
Keeping a gluten-free kitchen means reading ingredient labels thoroughly.
Have on hand healthy snacks for all family members: