This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.
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What are the major symptoms of celiac disease?
Celiac Disease Symptoms
What testing is available for celiac disease?
Celiac Disease Screening
Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results
Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free?
How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful?
The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free
Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested?
Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing
Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases?
Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders
Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid?
Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients)
Is there a list of gluten free foods?
Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients)
Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages
Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free?
Where does gluten hide?
Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet
What if my doctor won't listen to me?
An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners
FLATTENED VILLI IS NOT ALWAYS CAUSED BY CELIAC DISEASE
Celiac.com 04/20/2004 – According to researchers at the Department of Anatomic Pathology, William Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak, MI, the cause of flattened villi is not always celiac disease. The researchers studied seven patients who experienced several weeks of gluten-sensitivity and the same type of villi injury—"increased lymphoplasmacytic lamina propria inflammation, moderate to complete villous flattening, numerous crypt mitoses, and markedly increased villous intraepithelial lymphocytes (IELs)." All patients were diagnosed with gluten sensitivity, and all returned 9 to 38 weeks later questioning their diagnosis, as their symptoms had substantially or completely disappeared, and clinical improvement in these patients seemed unrelated to their ingestion of gluten. A follow up endoscopy and colonoscopy was performed on these patients 4 to 16 months later, and the results of each showed a normal mucosa.
According to the researchers:
"Diseases other than GS can cause marked villous flattening and increased villous IELs in adults. The cause of small bowel mucosal injury is unknown. A similar non-GS-associated clinicopathologic complex, assumed to be due to a protracted viral enteritis or slow regression of a virus-induced immune reaction, occurs in children. The temporal aspects of symptom improvement and mucosal restitution in these 7 patients are similar to acute self-limited colitis. An overly exuberant immune response to an infectious agent is possible."
Troncone R, Greco L, Mayer M, Mazzarella G, et. al. Gastroenterology, 1996; 111: 318-324 The final paragraph says: In conclusion, our data show that approximately half of the siblings of patients with celiac disease show signs of sensitization to gluten as they mount an inflammatory local response to rectal gluten challenge. The genetic background and the clinical meaning of such gluten sensitivity need to be established. Further studies, particularly at the jejunal level, are necessary before deciding if any action is to be taken in this subset of first-degree relatives.
Celiac.com 12/15/2010 - A small study in Swedish children has found no association between early childhood psychological stress and later development of celiac disease. Previous studies have shown links between psychological stress and a number immunological diseases, such as inflammatory bowel disease.
A team of researchers sought to look more closely at the connection between psychological stress in families and biopsy-proven celiac disease in children. The team included Karl Mårild, Anneli Sepa Frostell, and Jonas F. Ludvigsson.
Their measure of psychological stress included factors such as serious life events, parenting stress, and parental worries. Using a questionnaire data from the ABIS study (All Babies In southeast Sweden), the team collected data on 11,000 children at one-year, and on 8,800 at two-years old. They confirmed celiac disease though observing of villous atrophy in small intestinal biopsy, and confirmed the diagnosis through patient chart data.
Their data showed that no association between future celiac disease and a serious life event in the family in the child's first 1 or 2.5 years after childbirth (Odds Ratio (OR) = 0.45; 95% Confidence Interval (CI) = 0.01–2.65; P = 0.72; and OR = 1.21; 95% CI = 0.43–3.05; P = 0.64, respectively).
They also found no association between celiac disease and parenting stress at age 1 year and at 2.5 years (OR = 0.40; 95% CI = 0.01–2.38; P = 0.73 and OR = 0.74; 95% CI = 0.01–4.56; P = 1.00, respectively).
No children exposed to parental worries at 2.5 years were diagnosed with celiac disease before end of follow-up, compared to 25 diagnosed out of 8082 children not exposed to parental worry (OR = 0.00; 95% CI = 0.00–2.34; P = 0.64).
Nor was there any associations between the combined measures of stress and celiac disease.
This particular study found no association between celiac disease in Swedish children and psychological stress early in life. However, a wider and more statistically robust study is needed to entirely rule out any possible associations between early psychological stresses in children and later development of celiac disease.
Celiac.com 03/01/2012 - Currently, the best way to assess whether patients with celiac disease are actually maintaining a strict gluten-free diet is to have trained experts conduct a dietary interview. These interviews can vary in complexity, depending on the nature and number of the questions, and on the amount of medical expertise required to score the responses.
A team of researchers has developed a way to score gluten-free dietary adherence based on answers to four quick and easy questions that can be assessed by non-expert personnel. The researchers recently set out to test the reliability of their questionnaire in a new group of patients.
The research team includes F. Biagi, P.I. Bianchi, A. Marchese, L. Trotta, C. Vattiato, D. Balduzzi, G. Brusco, A. Andrealli, F. Cisarò, M. Astegiano, S. Pellegrino, G. Magazzù, C. Klersy, and G.R. Corazza.
They are affiliated with the Coeliac Centre/First Department of Internal Medicine of the Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo at the University of Pavia in Pavia, Italy.
The scoring for the quiz is set up to verify adherence to a gluten-free diet. The questionnaire has a five-level score.
From March 2008 to January 2011, the team surveyed 141 celiac disease patients who were undergoing re-evaluation. Each patient was following on a gluten-free diet.
The team then compared survey scores with levels of both villous atrophy and endomysial antibodies (EMA). Patients with persistence of either villous atrophy (Fisher's exact, P < 0·001; test for trend, P < 0·001) or positive EMA (Fisher's exact, P = 0·001; test for trend, P = 0·018) showed the lowest scores, which indicates poor compliance with a gluten-free diet.
Given that the celiac patients have been well instructed on what a gluten-free diet means and on how to follow it, our questionnaire is a reliable and simple method to verify compliance to a gluten-free diet. The team did not share in the study abstract the exact questions included in the survey, so stay tuned to find out the exact questions the team is testing.
Br J Nutr. 2012 Feb 10:1-5.
Celiac.com 08/27/2014 - Can antibiotic exposure in pregnancy increase the risk of celiac disease in children? Some researchers suspect that infant microbiota play a pathogenic role in celiac disease. The idea that antibiotic treatment in pregnancy could significantly impact the infant microbiota, and thus influence the development of celiac disease, has led many to ponder the possible connection.
To get a clearer picture, a research team recently set out to study the effects on offspring of antibiotic exposure in pregnancy.
The team included Karl Mårild, Johnny Ludvigsson, Yolanda Sanz, and Jonas F. Ludvigsson. They are variously affiliated with the Deptartment of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, the Astrid Lindgren Children's Hospital at Karolinska University Hospital in Solna, Sweden, the Division of Paediatrics in the Department of Clinical and Experimental Medicine at Linköping University, Östergötland County Council in Linköping, Sweden, the Department of Paediatrics of Örebro University Hospital in Örebro, Sweden, and the Microbial Ecology and Nutrition Research Group at the Institute of Agrochemistry and Food Technology of the National Research Council (IATA-CSIC) in Valencia, Spain.
The team started by reviewing existing data on antibiotic exposure in pregnancy in 8,729 children recorded in the All Babies in Southeast Sweden (ABIS) cohort study. Through December 2006, 46 of the 8,729 had developed celiac disease. The team then used Cox regression to estimate celiac disease hazard ratios (HRs) in children whose mothers received antibiotics during pregnancy. The ratios were adjusted based on parent-reported diary data on breastfeeding, age at gluten introduction, and the number of infections in the child's first year of life.
Of the 1,836 children exposed to antibiotics during pregnancy, 12 (0.7%) children developed celiac disease as compared with 34/6893 (0.5%) unexposed children (HR = 1.33; 95% CI = 0.69–2.56).
Risk estimates remained unchanged after adjustment for breastfeeding, age at gluten introduction and infection load in the child's first year of life (HR = 1.28; 95% CI = 0.66–2.48).
When all the data were factored, the team found no statistically significant connection between antibiotic exposure during pregnancy and celiac disease in offspring. The team suggests that this data may present an accurate picture, or it may be that they simply lack the statistical power to make a clear connection.
Further studies are likely needed before researchers can confidently conclude that there is no connection between antibiotic exposure in pregnancy and celiac disease in offspring.
BMC Gastroenterol. 2014;14(75)
Celiac.com 04/23/2018 - A team of researchers recently set out to learn whether celiac disease patients commonly suffer cognitive impairment at the time they are diagnosed, and to compare their cognitive performance with non-celiac subjects with similar chronic symptoms and to a group of healthy control subjects.
The research team included G Longarini, P Richly, MP Temprano, AF Costa, H Vázquez, ML Moreno, S Niveloni, P López, E Smecuol, R Mazure, A González, E Mauriño, and JC Bai. They are variously associated with the Small Bowel Section, Department of Medicine, Dr. C. Bonorino Udaondo Gastroenterology Hospital; Neurocience Cognitive and Traslational Institute (INECO), Favaloro Fundation, CONICET, Buenos Aires; the Brain Health Center (CESAL), Quilmes, Argentina; the Research Council, MSAL, CABA; and with the Research Institute, School of Medicine, Universidad del Salvador.
The team enrolled fifty adults with symptoms and indications of celiac disease in a prospective cohort without regard to the final diagnosis. At baseline, all individuals underwent cognitive functional and psychological evaluation. The team then compared celiac disease patients with subjects without celiac disease, and with healthy controls matched by sex, age, and education.
Celiac disease patients had similar cognitive performance and anxiety, but no significant differences in depression scores compared with disease controls.
A total of thirty-three subjects were diagnosed with celiac disease. Compared with the 26 healthy control subjects, the 17 celiac disease subjects, and the 17 disease control subjects, who mostly had irritable bowel syndrome, showed impaired cognitive performance (P=0.02 and P=0.04, respectively), functional impairment (P<0.01), and higher depression (P<0.01).
From their data, the team noted that any abnormal cognitive functions they saw in adults with newly diagnosed celiac disease did not seem not to be a result of the disease itself.
Their results indicate that cognitive dysfunction in celiac patients could be related to long-term symptoms from chronic disease, in general.
J Clin Gastroenterol. 2018 Mar 1. doi: 10.1097/MCG.0000000000001018.
Celiac.com 04/21/2018 - Dear Friends and Readers,
I have been writing articles for Scott Adams since the 2002 Summer Issue of the Scott-Free Press. The Scott-Free Press evolved into the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. I felt honored when Scott asked me ten years ago to contribute to his quarterly journal and it's been a privilege to write articles for his publication ever since.
Due to personal health reasons and restrictions, I find that I need to retire. My husband and I can no longer travel the country speaking at conferences and to support groups (which we dearly loved to do) nor can I commit to writing more books, articles, or menus. Consequently, I will no longer be contributing articles to the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity.
My following books will still be available at Amazon.com:
Gluten-free Cooking for Dummies
Student's Vegetarian Cookbook for Dummies
Wheat-free Gluten-free Dessert Cookbook
Wheat-free Gluten-free Reduced Calorie Cookbook
Wheat-free Gluten-free Cookbook for Kids and Busy Adults (revised version)
My first book was published in 1996. My journey since then has been incredible. I have met so many in the celiac community and I feel blessed to be able to call you friends. Many of you have told me that I helped to change your life – let me assure you that your kind words, your phone calls, your thoughtful notes, and your feedback throughout the years have had a vital impact on my life, too. Thank you for all of your support through these years.
Celiac.com 04/20/2018 - A digital media company and a label data company are teaming up to help major manufacturers target, reach and convert their desired shoppers based on dietary needs, such as gluten-free diet. The deal could bring synergy in emerging markets such as the gluten-free and allergen-free markets, which represent major growth sectors in the global food industry.
Under the deal, personalized digital media company Catalina will be joining forces with Label Insight. Catalina uses consumer purchases data to target shoppers on a personal base, while Label Insight works with major companies like Kellogg, Betty Crocker, and Pepsi to provide insight on food label data to government, retailers, manufacturers and app developers.
"Brands with very specific product benefits, gluten-free for example, require precise targeting to efficiently reach and convert their desired shoppers,” says Todd Morris, President of Catalina's Go-to-Market organization, adding that “Catalina offers the only purchase-based targeting solution with this capability.”
Label Insight’s clients include food and beverage giants such as Unilever, Ben & Jerry's, Lipton and Hellman’s. Label Insight technology has helped the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) build the sector’s very first scientifically accurate database of food ingredients, health attributes and claims.
Morris says the joint partnership will allow Catalina to “enhance our dataset and further increase our ability to target shoppers who are currently buying - or have shown intent to buy - in these emerging categories,” including gluten-free, allergen-free, and other free-from foods.
The deal will likely make for easier, more precise targeting of goods to consumers, and thus provide benefits for manufacturers and retailers looking to better serve their retail food customers, especially in specialty areas like gluten-free and allergen-free foods.
Celiac.com 04/19/2018 - Previous genome and linkage studies indicate the existence of a new disease triggering mechanism that involves amino acid metabolism and nutrient sensing signaling pathways. In an effort to determine if amino acids might play a role in the development of celiac disease, a team of researchers recently set out to investigate if plasma amino acid levels differed among children with celiac disease compared with a control group.
The research team included Åsa Torinsson Naluai, Ladan Saadat Vafa, Audur H. Gudjonsdottir, Henrik Arnell, Lars Browaldh, and Daniel Agardh. They are variously affiliated with the Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Institute of Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Department of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Karolinska University Hospital and Division of Pediatrics, CLINTEC, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Clinical Science and Education, Karolinska Institute, Sodersjukhuset, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Mathematical Sciences, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Diabetes & Celiac Disease Unit, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden; and with the Nathan S Kline Institute in the U.S.A.
First, the team used liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS) to analyze amino acid levels in fasting plasma samples from 141 children with celiac disease and 129 non-celiac disease controls. They then crafted a general linear model using age and experimental effects as covariates to compare amino acid levels between children with celiac disease and non-celiac control subjects.
Compared with the control group, seven out of twenty-three children with celiac disease showed elevated levels of the the following amino acids: tryptophan; taurine; glutamic acid; proline; ornithine; alanine; and methionine.
The significance of the individual amino acids do not survive multiple correction, however, multivariate analyses of the amino acid profile showed significantly altered amino acid levels in children with celiac disease overall and after correction for age, sex and experimental effects.
This study shows that amino acids can influence inflammation and may play a role in the development of celiac disease.
PLoS One. 2018; 13(3): e0193764. doi: & 10.1371/journal.pone.0193764
Celiac.com 04/18/2018 - To the relief of many bewildered passengers and crew, no more comfort turkeys, geese, possums or other questionable pets will be flying on Delta or United without meeting the airlines' strict new requirements for service animals.
If you’ve flown anywhere lately, you may have seen them. People flying with their designated “emotional support” animals. We’re not talking genuine service animals, like seeing eye dogs, or hearing ear dogs, or even the Belgian Malinois that alerts its owner when there is gluten in food that may trigger her celiac disease.
Now, to be honest, some of those animals in question do perform a genuine service for those who need emotional support dogs, like veterans with PTSD.
However, many of these animals are not service animals at all. Many of these animals perform no actual service to their owners, and are nothing more than thinly disguised pets. Many lack proper training, and some have caused serious problems for the airlines and for other passengers.
Now the major airlines are taking note and introducing stringent requirements for service animals.
Delta was the first to strike. As reported by the New York Times on January 19: “Effective March 1, Delta, the second largest US airline by passenger traffic, said it will require passengers seeking to fly with pets to present additional documents outlining the passenger’s need for the animal and proof of its training and vaccinations, 48 hours prior to the flight.… This comes in response to what the carrier said was a 150 percent increase in service and support animals — pets, often dogs, that accompany people with disabilities — carried onboard since 2015.… Delta said that it flies some 700 service animals a day. Among them, customers have attempted to fly with comfort turkeys, gliding possums, snakes, spiders, and other unusual pets.”
Fresh from an unsavory incident with an “emotional support” peacock incident, United Airlines has followed Delta’s lead and set stricter rules for emotional support animals. United’s rules also took effect March 1, 2018.
So, to the relief of many bewildered passengers and crew, no more comfort turkeys, geese, possums or other questionable pets will be flying on Delta or United without meeting the airlines' strict new requirements for service and emotional support animals.
My Dr. did a blood test, positive for glutten intolerance, not celiac disease. About 15 years ago I was positive for celiac disease, tested by stool sample. Since I posted I have tested positive for heavy metals. Also I have high gastrin levels. getting ready to test for that.
It appears to me that glutten intolerance, vagal activity, high gastrin levels are all connected somehow.
I've been totally gluten free for 3 years now. I sometimes still get diarrhea. Maybe once every month or two. I don't know if it is because of CC or what. And when i get it, it is usually either one time for one day (not throughout day) or every few hours for a day. I don't know if it is more normal for celiacs to have worse diarrhea. Is it normal for this to happen? Is there anything to soothe it? Thank you. I had a supposedly gluten free takeout meal sunday so maybe that is it. When I didn't know I had celiac it was like this too until I went gluten-free.