Adjusting your diet for celiac disease can be a challenge. Celiac disease is an immune system disorder affecting the lining of the small intestine, causing it to become inflamed when exposed to gluten. That inflammation can make it difficult to absorb nutrients and can lead to additional health problems.
On average in the United States, people wait up to 4 years before being diagnosed with celiac disease, even after they start experiencing related symptoms! Unfortunately, with celiac disease, it's not a good idea to wait to address it.
How to manage celiac disease
A gluten-free diet is the only safe and proven way to manage the symptoms of celiac disease. When not continually irritated, the lining of your intestine can heal and return to normal levels of nutrient absorption.
Although not easy, many substitute foods can be used to allow you to enjoy similar foods while avoiding the inflammation that comes from eating gluten. Some gluten-free grains and alternative flours for a celiac disease diet are:
You'll want to consult a physician before selecting "ancient grain" options, as most still contain gluten. A medical professional can also help you consider any additional sensitivities that may help determine your ideal meal plan.
Eating tips for avoiding gluten
Unfortunately, gluten is common in foods you might not always suspect. Generally, these food categories are safe to eat when you have celiac disease:
- Beans, legumes, and nuts
- Poultry and eggs
- Fish and seafood
In addition to the typical bread and grains, gluten can often be found in salad dressings and sauces. When eating out, you may need to ask restaurant staff about their menu. If you aren't sure, choose to order a different item you know to be safe.
Making an appointment with a doctor
If you suspect an issue with your stomach, bowels, or digestion related to gluten or celiac disease, it's important to talk with a doctor.
Call 704-372-7974 to schedule a TeleHealth appointment with Carolina Digestive today.