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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.

Vision Problems Related To Celiac Disease?
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22 posts in this topic

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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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Just want to put this out there, advise given to me by my doc. I had been taking vit A in tablet form rather than in the form of cod liver oil. Doc told me there were too many health risks associated with vit A itself but in cod liver form he was very approving. He's been the only doc I have been able to talk about vits with, most just pass it off. For me, supplementation has been so helpful to improving my health.

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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.

Are you sure? Are you in a gluten free home on a whole foods diet? You could be one of the few who react to lower levels.

Super cute baby, by the way.

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I hate to get too personal, but could it be your age? When after we turned 40, both my husband and I noticed a big deterioration in our vision. My eye doctor said it was very common around that age, which is when a lot of people start needing reading glasses.

But I have noticed that my vision has improved since going gluten free and I don't need glasses for reading, except when I get glutened. Unfortunately, like you, I inherited the bad eyesight gene. My vision is 20/1000 uncorrected and I'm in -6.5 contacts. I'm blind as a Celiac bat :D

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Are you sure? Are you in a gluten free home on a whole foods diet? You could be one of the few who react to lower levels.

Super cute baby, by the way.

Thanks! And yes, I am sure. 100% gluten-free home (there's even a sign on the front door) and we eat a whole foods, plant-based diet. I absolutely do react to lower levels and can tell instantly when I've been cc'd. It hasn't happened in a looooong time.

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I hate to get too personal, but could it be your age? When after we turned 40, both my husband and I noticed a big deterioration in our vision. My eye doctor said it was very common around that age, which is when a lot of people start needing reading glasses.

But I have noticed that my vision has improved since going gluten free and I don't need glasses for reading, except when I get glutened. Unfortunately, like you, I inherited the bad eyesight gene. My vision is 20/1000 uncorrected and I'm in -6.5 contacts. I'm blind as a Celiac bat :D

I'm not 40 yet, but this happened at the same age for me as it did to my dad. I think it's just sucky genetics. :P

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Thanks! And yes, I am sure. 100% gluten-free home (there's even a sign on the front door) and we eat a whole foods, plant-based diet. I absolutely do react to lower levels and can tell instantly when I've been cc'd. It hasn't happened in a looooong time.

Good for you. I haven't put a note on my door yet. I was hoping that if you were more careful, your vision problems would go away as mine did. I'm sorry.

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Good for you. I haven't put a note on my door yet. I was hoping that if you were more careful, your vision problems would go away as mine did. I'm sorry.

That's what I was hoping for too. I was hoping with time they'd get better, but no such luck. :(

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