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Dr Russ Blog - When a Friend Has Celiac Disease
When a Friend Has Celiac Disease
Created on 6/3/2008

Celiac disease, or celiac sprue, is a chronic disease that is much more common than previously thought. It is an inherited autoimmune disorder where inflammation develops in the gastrointestinal tract, specifically the small intestines, in response to eating foods that contain the protein gluten. The inflammation that results from gluten exposure doesn't permit proper nutrient absorption, and malnutrition can develop.

Reading food labels is very important for people with celiac disease, as the only known treatment for the disorder is completely avoiding foods that contain gluten. Found most often in wheat, barley, rye and oats, gluten can also be found in many other food products. Becoming well-informed about the foods where gluten can be found is necessary because rarely is the word "gluten" listed as an ingredient on a food label.

The single best resource I know of that provides information on celiac disease / celiac sprue is the web site for the Celiac Sprue Association
(http://www.csaceliacs.org/index.php). I visited the site today to review the information available there. Look under the Diet and Lifestyle heading, scroll down to Living Life Gluten-Free, click, then scroll down to click on recipes you can follow to create what look to be tasty treats for your friend using ingredients readily found at Harris Teeter stores. Even with this resource, however, I would ask your friend to review the ingredients to make sure they fit with the recommendations they have been given by their doctor and / or nutritionist.

I hope this is of help to you, and that you have a wonderful visit with your friend.

** Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other healthcare professional. You should not use the information on this web site for diagnosing or treating a health problem or disease, or prescribing any medication or other treatment. **



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