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What is the main cause of celiac disease?

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Celiac Disease is a genetic disorder that affects the small intestine. It is also called gluten-sensitive enteropathy, coeliac disease, non tropical sprue or celiac sprue. Problems in the digestive system cause this disease. Celiac disease is a condition prompted by intake of gluten rich foods like cookies, beer, bread, breakfast cereals, pasta, soups and cakes. Nutritional supplements, personal care products like toothpaste, skin care products, lipsticks, lip balms hair care products, prepackaged food items and even medicines containing gluten could cause Celiac disease. At times the disease could become severe and interfere with absorption of nutrients in an individual’s body.

What are the symptoms of celiac disease and how is it diagnosed?

Certain symptoms experienced by children suffering from Celiac disease include tiredness, bloating in the abdomen, gas, vomiting, chronic diarrhea, passing foul smelling, fatty and pale stools, nausea, gas and constipation. Fallout of the disease in children include loss of weight, destruction of tooth enamel, irritability and mood swings, stunted growth and delay in puberty. No digestive symptoms are experienced by adults, however certain symptoms like joint pain, bone pain, reddish tongue, depression, anxiety, ulcers in the mouth, itchy skin blisters, brittle and weak bones, numbness in feet and hands, missed menstrual cycles, infertility and repeated miscarriages are seen. At times when a person suffers from Celiac disease and digestive problems both, then some symptoms like stomach ulcers, bloating of abdomen, long lasting tiredness and blockages in the intestine may be experienced.

The disease may also lead to a reaction when own body cells are attacked by immune system of the body. Reaction could spread to the spleen, musculoskeletal system, skin and nervous system.

Celiac disease is diagnosed with specific blood tests and endoscopic biopsies. The disease is best managed by taking a diet free of gluten, avoiding non food items and medications containing gluten and taking alternative medications. The patient must consume gluten free foods like potatoes, meat, fish, vegetables and fruits free of flavorings and additives.  Combating the disease is easier with consumption of foods fortified with minerals and vitamins. Wheat flour can be replaced with brown, wild or black rice, sorghum, quinoa, gluten free oats, buckwheat, millet, soy, popcorn, corn meal and bean flour.

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