Celiac Disease Summer Eating Tips

If you have Celiac Disease, an autoimmune disorder triggered by the protein gluten, summer eating can trigger painful symptoms. Grains, such as wheat, barley, rye and possibly oats contain gluten. Staying away from bread won’t solve the problem, because grains are hidden in many foods.

You have to check the labels of all foods you buy to see if they contain these grains. Sometimes, it’s difficult to tell what certain ingredients are. For example, common ingredients such as modified food starch and hydrolyzed vegetable protein can be made from corn, potato, tapioca or wheat. If these ingredients are made from wheat, they will contain gluten. Fortunately, if foods contain wheat, the FDA now requires that this information be included on the label.

Another place that gluten may be found is in food supplements which commonly use starch made from wheat as an ingredient. The quickest way to be sure that your supplements don’t contain wheat is to look for “gluten-free” on the supplement label.

Many people believe that a gluten-free diet is especially healthy and leads to weight loss. However, a truly gluten-free diet may actually contain more calories than a regular diet and can lead to some nutritional deficiencies if not monitored closely. Talk to your doctor or nurse to make sure you’re getting the nutrients you need.

What is Celiac Disease?

Celiac disease is an inflammation of the small intestine that may cause bloating, diarrhea, constipation, malabsorption of vitamins, osteoporosis, weight loss, fatigue, weakness and possibly lower blood counts. Foods containing the protein gluten are responsible for causing these problems in the digestive system. Foods with gluten include wheat, barley, rye and possibly oats.

According to the National Institutes of Health, Caucasians, people of northern European descent, and people with Type 1 diabetes and fibroid conditions are commonly diagnosed with celiac disease. It may also be passed on to family members through genetics.

An individual holding a slice of watermelon with the words 'Hello Summer' cut out of it

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