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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      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.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) 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 Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

B12, Pre-Mature Grey, Celiac?
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Hello. I was only recently diagnosed with Celiac. As I have been reading many articles here and online I am curious about the relationship between Celiac and grey hair. I have not been tested for vitamin deficiency levels yet, as I was literally just diagnosed. I am meeting with my doctor again in 2 weeks so we can see how I am doing with my new gluten-free diet.

I have had pre-mature grey hair since I was 12, I am 28 now. I have never been tested for vit B-12, and this may very well be hereditary as my father started to grey at around 25. I have read some articles about a link between grey hair and B12. Similarly I have read some on Ceilac and B12 issues. This may not be a mathematical equation "if a=b, and b=c then a=c," but I am curious if anyone can give me feedback about links btwn grey hair and Celiac.

I may be throwing in something off the wall, but am curious as well. I probably will request a B12 test in 2 weeks.

Thanks in advance.

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There is a link between Celiac and Pernicious anemia (a lack of the intinsic factor in the gut lining to properly absorb vitamin B12).

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There is a link between Celiac and Pernicious anemia (a lack of the intinsic factor in the gut lining to properly absorb vitamin B12).

Do I ask my doctor for B12 test or a pernicious anemia test? I am very new to this and have not had 1 test beyond Celiac yet. I am making a list for my doctor. Thanks for the info!

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I started noticing gray hair at 17. Now at 36 I have a lot silver threads, people think I get my highlights done. :D I used to be upset about it and started dying it at 17 but since I don't know of any gluten free hair dye and I can't afford to have it done in a salon, I'm calling my hair color "recession gray".

Good for you making a list for the Dr. Very good idea.

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I've had little streaks of white hair since I was a teenager too — I'm 27 now. I actually love it and can't wait to have more. I think gray and white hair is gorgeous. But I don't think it has anything to do with Celiac.

But definitely ask your doctor for a complete vitamin panel including the usual suspects like iron, B, and D.

Edited to add: All of my vitamin levels checked out after my diagnosis. My B12 numbers were well within normal range and I still have the silvers. :)

Edited by shopgirl
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i think grey hair is part genetics, part disease link, and possibly diet related too.

i hate to sound like a broken record- but you should get fairly routine Thyroid panels done-> as Thyroid disorders can be common with Gluten Intolerance AND-> can cause premature greying.

ive never heard of B12 def. contributing to grey hair- but i dont know everything.

imho: as a Celiac or Gluten Intolerant: your basic tests you need to be getting are: B12, vit. D, Iron, & Thyroid. these issues seem to be the most common with gluten intolerance. definitely get these done.

im not sure if there's a pernicious anemia test-> or if the doc can just tell by the B12 levels???

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From my past research, I learned that graying of the hair is caused by the depletion of catalase. Unfortunately, simply taking catalase supplements may not do the trick (don't be fooled by the many products on the market that state that taking their catalase supplement will stop the graying process). Depletion of catalase occurs naturally throughout our lifetimes. However, its levels are maintained by specific minerals, and it has been conjectured that if the levels of those minerals are maintained, catalase will also remain high. Those minerals are zinc, manganese, copper and selenium. I can attest to the fact that when I was accidentally glutened last April, one of the symptoms that appeared soon after was hairloss and the sudden growth of many gray hairs. I also appeared to have other symptoms of being deficient in zinc, manganese, and selenium. I supplemented with chelated amino acids forms of zinc and manganese (and I took copper, too, since it's needed if you take zinc supplements), and all of my symptoms improved except the graying. I tried taking selenium from various manufacturers, but couldn't tolerate it at all. I suspect that I'm very low in selenium....but what can I do?

Anyway, perhaps you're able to tolerate all of these minerals--good luck to you! And if fewer gray hairs appear, please share that fact with us here on the Forum.

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From my past research, I learned that graying of the hair is caused by the depletion of catalase. Unfortunately, simply taking catalase supplements may not do the trick (don't be fooled by the many products on the market that state that taking their catalase supplement will stop the graying process). Depletion of catalase occurs naturally throughout our lifetimes. However, its levels are maintained by specific minerals, and it has been conjectured that if the levels of those minerals are maintained, catalase will also remain high. Those minerals are zinc, manganese, copper and selenium. I can attest to the fact that when I was accidentally glutened last April, one of the symptoms that appeared soon after was hairloss and the sudden growth of many gray hairs. I also appeared to have other symptoms of being deficient in zinc, manganese, and selenium. I supplemented with chelated amino acids forms of zinc and manganese (and I took copper, too, since it's needed if you take zinc supplements), and all of my symptoms improved except the graying. I tried taking selenium from various manufacturers, but couldn't tolerate it at all. I suspect that I'm very low in selenium....but what can I do?

Anyway, perhaps you're able to tolerate all of these minerals--good luck to you! And if fewer gray hairs appear, please share that fact with us here on the Forum.

interesting about the Selenium... as Selenium deficiency often occurs in those with thyroid disorders. i did a ton of research after my Hashi & Grave's dx... and Selenium is the number 1 thing to take to help. instead of taking the supplement- i opted for eating 3 Brazil nuts a day. or 2. its been stressed that you can overdose on selenium very easily and that it can be very dangerous- that is why i only eat 3 maximum a day.

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Hello. I was only recently diagnosed with Celiac. As I have been reading many articles here and online I am curious about the relationship between Celiac and grey hair. I have not been tested for vitamin deficiency levels yet, as I was literally just diagnosed. I am meeting with my doctor again in 2 weeks so we can see how I am doing with my new gluten-free diet.

I have had pre-mature grey hair since I was 12, I am 28 now. I have never been tested for vit B-12, and this may very well be hereditary as my father started to grey at around 25. I have read some articles about a link between grey hair and B12. Similarly I have read some on Ceilac and B12 issues. This may not be a mathematical equation "if a=b, and b=c then a=c," but I am curious if anyone can give me feedback about links btwn grey hair and Celiac.

I may be throwing in something off the wall, but am curious as well. I probably will request a B12 test in 2 weeks.

Thanks in advance.

My B-12 was tanked and I was going grey by 28. I did not think anything about either of these factors until I got very ill in 2008 (when I was 51) and went downhill for 3 years until I read about the many symptoms of celiac. Now, I can tie a whole slew of health issues/symptoms to celiac disease.

My Dad suffered from anemia his whole life and now, we can tie his other health problems to this disease as well.

You definitely want to have your B-12 level checked and your thyroid levels. But I think we drove that one home to you on your another post about having babies!! :)

Taking a list of questions to your doctor is a great idea!! Being pro-active is the thing that saved me from further decline (meaning I was persistent and wouldn't take being dismissed ) :D and it will serve you well too! Good luck.

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Good information on the selenium--thanks! I have Hashimoto's, which I've treated with Armour Thyroid for the past three years. I'll try eating the brazil nuts--as I recall, they're not too hard (have extremely brittle teeth).

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Good information on the selenium--thanks! I have Hashimoto's, which I've treated with Armour Thyroid for the past three years. I'll try eating the brazil nuts--as I recall, they're not too hard (have extremely brittle teeth).

i only eat up to 3 a day... it's supposed to help lower Hashi & Grave's antibodies. it's also supposed to help you convert your T4 to T3 easier. so far, they have not bothered my teeth.. they're kind of fatty.. i still indulge on Almond M&Ms.. and those almost crack my teeth :huh:

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Wow! This information is amazing and has truly sparked an investigation! I will be talking to my doctor about all these issues and requesting labs. I will keep everyone updated. Thanks, thanks, thanks =)

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vitamin and mineral deficiency is commonly overlooked by the medical community. If it weren't for your post I wouldn't have searched for any links to B12 defiency with premature greying.

The link for pernicious anemia seems to be from damaged gut lining for Celiacs. I don't know if many doctors feel comfortable ordering the proper testing to diagnose it. Ordering the test for your B12 levels should be simple enough. A B12 causes nuerological problems if left untreated and it seems more of the general population are shown to be lacking.

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Good information on the selenium--thanks! I have Hashimoto's, which I've treated with Armour Thyroid for the past three years. I'll try eating the brazil nuts--as I recall, they're not too hard (have extremely brittle teeth).

I soak almonds for an hour before eating them...less rough on the teeth!! just a thought?!

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vitamin and mineral deficiency is commonly overlooked by the medical community. If it weren't for your post I wouldn't have searched for any links to B12 defiency with premature greying.

The link for pernicious anemia seems to be from damaged gut lining for Celiacs. I don't know if many doctors feel comfortable ordering the proper testing to diagnose it. Ordering the test for your B12 levels should be simple enough. A B12 causes nuerological problems if left untreated and it seems more of the general population are shown to be lacking.

thank you! This info is really helpful and I appreciate the info to. I will ask for a B12

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One thing that should be added is that you can have "normal" blood b12 levels and still be deficient (well, that's true of plenty of things, not just b12...). The first time I got mine checked I was 300; thankfully the doc saw that was too low despite the lab reference range low being 200. The second time I got my b12 checked I was 800 something, and the doc (a different one) condescendingly told me I didn't need to be taking the b12, but frankly, I feel much better taking it. See if you can get the MMA and homocysteine tests in addition to b12, because those tests usually can indicate a b12 issue even if the b12 blood test doesn't.

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One thing that should be added is that you can have "normal" blood b12 levels and still be deficient (well, that's true of plenty of things, not just b12...). The first time I got mine checked I was 300; thankfully the doc saw that was too low despite the lab reference range low being 200. The second time I got my b12 checked I was 800 something, and the doc (a different one) condescendingly told me I didn't need to be taking the b12, but frankly, I feel much better taking it. See if you can get the MMA and homocysteine tests in addition to b12, because those tests usually can indicate a b12 issue even if the b12 blood test doesn't.

what's an MMA??

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IrishHeart,

GREAT suggestion! I love almonds, but I stopped eating them some time ago because of the fragility of my teeth (broke three molars at one sitting last year). I'll definitely trying soaking some to see what happens.

Also, does anyone know a good source of Brazil nuts?? I can't seem to find any...

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IrishHeart,

GREAT suggestion! I love almonds, but I stopped eating them some time ago because of the fragility of my teeth (broke three molars at one sitting last year). I'll definitely trying soaking some to see what happens.

Also, does anyone know a good source of Brazil nuts?? I can't seem to find any...

i bought mine in the refridgerated section at Chamberlains. ive also seen them at a local organic market/shop/cafe.

i havent looked at whole foods yet

good luck

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No one has replied to this thread for a while, so I'm not sure if anyone is still checking it. But I was searching for something else and came across this thread. Here are my two cents:

Yes, there could be a connection to premature graying of the hair and B12 deficiency. But the likely connection may lie in a hidden folic acid deficiency, which can cause graying of the hair. B12 issues can often mask a folic acid deficiency, so make sure that you get that tested right along with the B12. I actually have had a B12 deficiency for years, on and off, and only recently discovered the folic acid deficiency through my smart GI doc who knew to keep looking. Despite the fact that my dad and mom both grayed much later in life (in their late 40s/early 50s) I had found a few silvers on my own head (I'm in my early 30s), which was really shocking for me- I plucked them out! :lol: Now that I'm on folic acid supplements, hopefully my normal color will return. And hopefully yours too!

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Once you have your blood work-up done make sure you ask for a copy of the results. I did not and doc did not share with me my deficencies. When I requested a copy from my records I was shocked, I had all these low marks. Rather than taking this to my doc I looked up each medical code online, you can find them by just googling. Started taking the various supplements for what I was low in and while it was a cure overnight I am feeling a ton better now.

I take B12 for my memory issues. I have had hair loss and had a bone scan that showed loss in both my spine and legs, my issues was pretty progressed before it was figured out what was causing the problem. I thought from my reading I saw that gray hair was due to low levels of minerals like copper that the body loses wiuth age.

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