New research on vitamins and celiac disease
Celiac.com 09/08/2010 - Children with celiac disease face high risks for bone disease without supplemental vitamins, according to a recent study by scientists at the Canada's University of Alberta. The study shows that without certain crucial vitamins, children with celiac disease face a greater risk for weak bones and osteoporosis.

For the study, the research team evaluated 43 children and teens from three to 18 years of age with clinically proven celiac disease. They found that the children commonly showed low bone density, most likely from poor intake and absorption of vitamins and minerals.

According to the results, the children with celiac disease got less than half of their recommended daily intake of Vitamin K. They also showed low Vitamin D levels, which can be normalized by eating fortified dairy products by regular sun exposure.

That means kids with celiac disease need more of bone-promoting vitamins such as K and D as part of their regular nutrition, says Diana Mager who is professor of agricultural, food and nutritional science, and co-leader the research team together with Justine Turner, pediatric gastroenterologist in the Department of Pediatrics at the U of A.

"Children with celiac disease are at risk for poor bone health, but by adding vitamins K and D to their diets, it can help reduce the risk of fractures and osteoporosis," Mager said. 

Mager also recommends that children with celiac disease get outside as part of their regular play activity to build bone strength and boost Vitamin D levels.

"Enjoying activities such as walking and running outdoors when there is more sunshine is a great way to contribute to healthy bones," Mager said.

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