People with celiac disease who eat a gluten-free diet experience fewer symptoms and complications of the disease. People with celiac disease must eat a strictly gluten-free diet and must remain on the diet for the remainder of their lives.
In some severe cases, a gluten-free diet alone can't stop the symptoms and complications of celiac disease. In these cases, doctors might prescribe medications to suppress the immune system.
Not getting enough vitamins
People who follow a gluten-free diet may have low levels of certain vitamins and nutrients in their diets. Many grains are enriched with vitamins. Avoiding grains with a gluten-free diet may mean eating fewer of these enriched products. Ask your dietitian to review your diet to see that you're getting enough of these key nutrients:
Not sticking to the gluten-free diet
Dec. 20, 2011
If you accidentally eat a product that contains gluten, you may experience abdominal pain and diarrhea. Some people experience no signs or symptoms after eating gluten, but this doesn't mean it's not damaging their small intestines. Even trace amounts of gluten in your diet may be damaging, whether or not they cause signs or symptoms.
See more In-depth
- Celiac disease. ADA Nutrition Care Manual. http://nutritioncaremanual.org/topic.cfm?ncm_heading=Nutrition%20Care&ncm_toc_id=22684. Accessed Oct. 7, 2011.
- Niewinski MM. Advances in celiac disease and gluten-free diet. Journal of the American Dietetic Association. 2008;108:661.
- Loftus CG, et al. Celiac disease. American College of Gastroenterology. http://www.acg.gi.org/patients/gihealth/celiac.asp. Accessed Sept. 20, 2011.
- Quick start diet guide for celiac disease. Celiac Disease Foundation. http://www.celiac.org/downloads/QuickStart-Diet-Guide-Jan-2010.pdf. Accessed Sept. 20, 2011.
- Jennifer Nelson (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Sept. 20, 2011.
- The gluten-free diet. National Institutes of Health. http://celiac.nih.gov/PDF/CeliacDiseaseChart.pdf. Accessed Sept. 20, 2011.
- A glimpse of gluten free food labeling. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm265212.htm. Accessed Sept. 20, 2011.
- Have food allergies? Read the label. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm254504.htm. Accessed Sept. 8, 2011.