Tuesday, February 08, 2005

No Wheat!

When we switched endocrinologists a couple years ago, our new doctors encouraged us to screen Cassie for Celiac Disease. Good thing we did because Cassie tested positive for it.

Celiac Disease is an intolerance to gluten (more specifically gliadin). Gluten is found in wheat, rye, barley and malt. The introduction of gluten in a person's diet who has celiac disease causes the fine, hair-like villi in her small intestine to become damaged by her own immune system. That's right. It's an autoimmune disease like type-1 diabetes. Recent research has shown that people with type-1 diabetes have a higher chance of having celiac disease than the general population. So please test your child!

There's no cure for celiac. But it can be treated by simply not eating gluten. That means vigilant attention to ingredient lists, but we're all already used to looking at nutrition labels.

I've tried to keep this blog only about diabetes, but after many requests from other parents who have to deal with both diseases, I'll include some relevant posts on this page.