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Vision Problems Related To Celiac Disease?


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21 replies to this topic

#1 melikamaui

 
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Posted 26 January 2012 - 10:42 AM

I just came back from my yearly eye exam and my eyes have, yet again, gotten worse. And this is not just your run-of-the-mill aging thing. My eye doctors are constantly surprised at the level of deterioration that is happening in my vision. I went from having 20/20 vision just five years ago to being a total mess now. When I was diagnosed with celiac disease I thought maybe that was the reason for the vision loss and going gluten-free would help. So far...not. Am I living a pipe dream? I thought vision deterioration could be a symptom of celiac disease (one of the over 300 I read) and I thought it might get better with the gluten-free diet. Am I just totally wrong?

I don't want to be one of those people who blames EVERYTHING on celiac disease. I guess I was just hoping for some good news and am bummed that I got the opposite. Anyone out there have their vision improve (or at least stop getting worse) with the introduction of a gluten-free diet?
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#2 Skylark

 
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Posted 26 January 2012 - 11:14 AM

I notice from your signature that you are vegan. Plant foods have very little pre-formed vitamin A (retinol) and are completely lacking the related retinoids. Not everyone can convert beta-carotene to vitamin A very well. Vegan diets also lack vitamin D3, and not everyone can convert enough D2 to D3, especially in the wintertime without sunlight. Vitamins A and D work together and deficiency in either can cause profound vision problems.

Are you supplementing vitamin D3 and vitamin A (not beta carotene)?
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#3 ravenwoodglass

 
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Posted 26 January 2012 - 11:40 AM

I don't think it has anything to do with being celiac. My vision was pretty consistent, but real bad at -250, for most of my life. We didn't know I needed glasses until I was 7 or so and I will never forget seeing leaves on a tree for the first time. I needed bifocals at a pretty young age, late 30's and my number for reading has gotten a bit worse after I hit my 40's but the doctor said that was normal as we age.
But then again all the females in my family need strong glasses so I think it is genetic. None of the men in my family do though and we have both female and male celiacs.
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celiac 49 years - Misdiagnosed for 45
Blood tested and repeatedly negative
Diagnosed by Allergist with elimination diet and diagnosis confirmed by GI in 2002
Misdiagnoses for 15 years were IBS-D, ataxia, migraines, anxiety, depression, fibromyalgia, parathesias, arthritis, livedo reticularis, hairloss, premature menopause, osteoporosis, kidney damage, diverticulosis, prediabetes and ulcers, dermatitis herpeformis
All bold resoved or went into remission with proper diagnosis of Celiac November 2002
Some residual nerve damage remains as of 2006- this has continued to resolve after eliminating soy in 2007

Mother died of celiac related cancer at 56
Twin brother died as a result of autoimmune liver destruction at age 15

Children 2 with Ulcers, GERD, Depression, , 1 with DH, 1 with severe growth stunting (male adult 5 feet)both finally diagnosed Celiac through blood testing and 1 with endo 6 months after Mom


Positive to Soy and Casien also Aug 2007

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HLA-DQB1 Molecular analysis, Allele 1 0303

HLA-DQB1 Molecular analysis, Allele 2 0303

Serologic equivalent: HLA-DQ 3,3 (Subtype 9,9)

#4 melikamaui

 
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Posted 26 January 2012 - 01:35 PM

Skylark, I am vegan, and I have all of my levels checked regularly. I just had an entire work-up six weeks ago and I am as healthy as a horse in all areas. Not missing a darned thing, vitamin or otherwise. That's why I was hoping this might be a celiac disease issue. Otherwise I feel like I'm just a slave to bad vision genetics. :(
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#5 Skylark

 
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Posted 26 January 2012 - 02:51 PM

Awww, bummer. I mean good that you're healthy and vitamins check out, but bummer that there is no explanation for it. I'm blind as a bat without correction but when you start wearing glasses at age 9 it's just something you get used to. :lol:
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#6 melikamaui

 
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Posted 26 January 2012 - 05:52 PM

It is a bummer. It came on rapidly for my dad too, and at the same age. But I was just wishing that going gluten-free would be a magic cure-all. Turns out, not so much.
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#7 AVR1962

 
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Posted 27 January 2012 - 12:29 AM

Do either ojne of your parents have vision issues, does it run in the family? Age? My husband's vision is real bad. As a young teen my daughter started having issues and we were going in every 6 months to get a new prescript, I was concerned. Eye doc told me that at a certain age the eyes will do this and the deterioration can last up to two years and then he said he normally sees things taper off. Unfortunately, my daughter inherited her father's poor vision and her prescript is now about what his is but it was very rapid there for awhile. Neither husband or daughter have celiac.

I, on the other hand, am celiac and I had a very different problem with my eyes. I was having trouble with the yellow leaves in the fall, they were blinding bright. I could not look at stripes, the pattern would blind me. Blurred visiion that would not go away. Double vision at times. My depth perception was off so I would drive and feel like my lane was too small. This went on for 3 years, eye appts went well and he had no idea what was wrong. Eye doc suggested I get get tested for diabetes, that came back negative. FINALLY, someone who was having the same trouble suggested taking cod liver oil tabs to get more vit A in my diet and BINGO! I took 3 tabs a day for quite sometime and have recently been able to cut back to 2.
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Yesterday is not ours to recover but today is ours to win or lose!

Miscarriage, Kidney stones, Anemia, Pneumonia, Migraines, Restless leg, Bone fractures, Blurred/Double vision, Extreme fatigue, Bone & Joint Pain, Thyroid nodule, Celiac diagnosed 2011, Spine and leg bone loss, GERD, Vitamin deficiencies, Malabsorbtion, Neuropathy issues, Ataxia, Raynaud's Syndrome. Currently on diet with limited grain and sugar.

#8 UKGail

 
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Posted 27 January 2012 - 02:46 AM

I find this thread quite interesting as I have suspected that my eyes are affected by gluten, but it is quite a subtle effect, not the major changes the OP describes. As I was getting sicker with Celiac, my eyes were also deteriorating, and I was also having trouble driving due to perception problems and difficulties concentrating. I had new stronger glasses for distance vision just before I was diagnosed, and they are still fine. The perception and concentration problems have gradually lifted with the diet. What seems to vary now with the occasional minor glutening is my middle vision blurring for a few days and then getting better. I have to emphasise that this is a very subtle effect which I notice only because I work at a computer all day, and I haven't been gluten free for very long, so it is difficult to be sure. My initial and major problems with celiac were migraine and fatigue, so I wonder if it is a manifestation of the neurological presentations of celiac, or possibly due to systemic inflammation? Vitamin A and/or D deficiency is an interesting thought too, though.

About 10 years ago when I was a stay at home Mum, I ate gluten free as part of a macro-biotic diet. I never felt so healthy and energetic as I did then, and I also had to drop a level in my glasses prescription. Due to gluten free, vitamin sufficiency or avoidance of computer screens? Hard to know.
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#9 dilettantesteph

 
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Posted 27 January 2012 - 04:20 AM

My vision went from 20/40 before diagnosis to 20/20 after diagnosis. I can now read without glasses and I couldn't before. I've been wearing glasses since the age of 20 and now I don't need them. I was diagnosed at age 48. Just because my vision problems were caused by gluten, doesn't mean that yours are too. Nonetheless, you could consider reviewing your diet. It took my eyes about a year to get better after I had learned the ins and outs of the diet.

Best wishes.
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#10 pricklypear1971

 
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Posted 27 January 2012 - 05:17 AM

I am due for an eye appt. so can't say for sure but I know my dry eyes improved EXCEPT when seasonal allergies are bad.

Dry eyes are a big problem for me. Gluten-free has really helped.
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#11 zimmer

 
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Posted 27 January 2012 - 06:55 AM

I am due for an eye appt. so can't say for sure but I know my dry eyes improved EXCEPT when seasonal allergies are bad.

Dry eyes are a big problem for me. Gluten-free has really helped.

I have had problems with dry eyes, too. Those issues seem to have improved some with gluten-free. However, I haven't noticed any correlation with my vision / levels of correction.
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#12 melikamaui

 
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Posted 27 January 2012 - 12:16 PM

Do either ojne of your parents have vision issues, does it run in the family? Age? My husband's vision is real bad. As a young teen my daughter started having issues and we were going in every 6 months to get a new prescript, I was concerned. Eye doc told me that at a certain age the eyes will do this and the deterioration can last up to two years and then he said he normally sees things taper off. Unfortunately, my daughter inherited her father's poor vision and her prescript is now about what his is but it was very rapid there for awhile. Neither husband or daughter have celiac.

I, on the other hand, am celiac and I had a very different problem with my eyes. I was having trouble with the yellow leaves in the fall, they were blinding bright. I could not look at stripes, the pattern would blind me. Blurred visiion that would not go away. Double vision at times. My depth perception was off so I would drive and feel like my lane was too small. This went on for 3 years, eye appts went well and he had no idea what was wrong. Eye doc suggested I get get tested for diabetes, that came back negative. FINALLY, someone who was having the same trouble suggested taking cod liver oil tabs to get more vit A in my diet and BINGO! I took 3 tabs a day for quite sometime and have recently been able to cut back to 2.


Both my parents have vision issues. In fact, my dad's issues began at the exact same age as mine. Mine are more severe however. I'm leaning toward believing this is just a case of bad genes unfortunately. I was really hoping that going gluten-free would be the miracle for my eyes that it has been for so many other areas of health for me!
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#13 melikamaui

 
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Posted 27 January 2012 - 12:18 PM

My vision went from 20/40 before diagnosis to 20/20 after diagnosis. I can now read without glasses and I couldn't before. I've been wearing glasses since the age of 20 and now I don't need them. I was diagnosed at age 48. Just because my vision problems were caused by gluten, doesn't mean that yours are too. Nonetheless, you could consider reviewing your diet. It took my eyes about a year to get better after I had learned the ins and outs of the diet.

Best wishes.


I've got the ins and outs of the diet down pat. I know with 100% certainty that no gluten is sneaking in to my diet. This is just dumb genetic luck I'm afraid.
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#14 AVR1962

 
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Posted 28 January 2012 - 12:49 AM

Both my parents have vision issues. In fact, my dad's issues began at the exact same age as mine. Mine are more severe however. I'm leaning toward believing this is just a case of bad genes unfortunately. I was really hoping that going gluten-free would be the miracle for my eyes that it has been for so many other areas of health for me!

And that's okay. You might try cod liver oil and just see if it makes any difference for you. That is the one supplement that my doc has said he feels everyone coudl benefit from. There are so many good benefits from cod liver oil.
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Yesterday is not ours to recover but today is ours to win or lose!

Miscarriage, Kidney stones, Anemia, Pneumonia, Migraines, Restless leg, Bone fractures, Blurred/Double vision, Extreme fatigue, Bone & Joint Pain, Thyroid nodule, Celiac diagnosed 2011, Spine and leg bone loss, GERD, Vitamin deficiencies, Malabsorbtion, Neuropathy issues, Ataxia, Raynaud's Syndrome. Currently on diet with limited grain and sugar.

#15 Skylark

 
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Posted 28 January 2012 - 06:50 PM

And that's okay. You might try cod liver oil and just see if it makes any difference for you. That is the one supplement that my doc has said he feels everyone could benefit from. There are so many good benefits from cod liver oil.

Yeah, that's what I was thinking when I said vitamins A and D3. Cod liver oil isn't vegan though. It's so good for eyes especially.
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