Manage Celiac Disease With Gluten Free Foods And Probiotics

celiac diseaseCeliac disease is a serious disorder that’s caused by an abnormal reaction to gluten (a protein found in wheat and grain products).

When gluten is eaten, the small intestines react and propel the immune system into a self-destructive mode.

What’s even more concerning is that celiac disease is becoming much more common than it was 50 years ago.

A research study published in the Gastroenterology journal examined samples of blood from 9,133 healthy individuals at the Warren Air Force Base from 1948 and 1954.

Another study done in Olmsted County, Minnesota looked at an additional 12,769 samples of adults and looked for indications of celiac disease.

The studies found that only 0.2% of the individuals from 50 years ago were classified with celiac disease.

The more recent blood samples showed that celiac disease was occurring 4 times more than 50 years ago.

Now, it’s estimated that about 1 in 100 people are diagnosed with celiac disease.

How Exactly Does Gluten Influence Celiac Disease?

Think of your small intestines as little shaggy carpets.

The individual carpet fibers are called villi.

Villi are special tissues that absorb the nutrients from food.

When someone has celiac disease, the gluten proteins become entangled in the delicate villi.

When this struggle occurs, the body sends out reinforcement to handle the issue.

This defense mechanism attacks not only the invading gluten but also the vital villi.

When the villi are attacked, it interferes with nutrient uptake of minerals and vitamins.

This process also can become agonizing to the person.

The results of this internal attack are extreme abdominal pain, constipation, gas, bloating, nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting.

These issues can come and go or remain constant in the individual.

When the body continually attacks the villi, it damages the overall body and can lead to depression, fatigue, anemia, weight loss, hair loss, body aches, and stunted growth in kids.

Common Foods To Avoid

Gluten is a sneaky protein that is popping up in many foods, medications, and even beauty products.

Wheat, rye, and barley naturally contain gluten.

However, many processed foods contain gluten because it’s used to provide texture and shape in the product.

Normally, the body can handle gluten just like any other protein.

With celiac disease, even the tiniest trace of gluten can spark an intense flare-up.

Here are common foods to avoid (unless specifically labeled gluten-free):

  • Cereal
  • Pasta
  • Beer
  • Candy
  • Fries
  • Processed or artificial meat
  • Salad dressing
  • Bread
  • Potato or tortilla chips

How Can Probiotics Help Manage Celiac Disease? 

Probiotics have anti-inflammatory properties.

These properties may help soothe the small intestines and reduce the inflammation and pain that can occur due to celiac disease.

A study published in the journal BMC microbiology found that children and adults with celiac disease had lower levels of the probiotic species Bifidobacterium, compared to individuals without celiac disease.

In Valencia, the National Spanish Research Council created an artificial small intestine and manufactured the effects of celiac disease.

The researchers began experimenting with many probiotic strains and found that specifically Bifidobacterium was able to help improve the strength of the intestinal wall.

The more resilient the intestinal wall, the less severe the side effects of gluten are.

The study also showed that the probiotics helped lessen the overall hostility of the immune system towards the small intestine and gluten protein.

More research needs to be completed but these are promising results as a potential management of celiac disease.

In Conclusion…

Celiac disease is a serious digestive disorder that can cause great pain to the individual.

Completely removing gluten from the diet and supplementing with probiotics may be potential ways to manage celiac disease and its unpleasant symptoms.

Be sure to check with your doctor if you think you may have celiac disease.

For suggestions on a beneficial probiotic, check out our 10 best probiotic supplements.


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About the Author

About the Author: Kate Watson is the Lead Researcher and Founder of Kate started this site after successfully using probiotics to treat some digestive issues she'd had since childhood. In her free time Kate loves nothing more than a good book (and a good glass of wine).