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question

How does celiac disease affect the body?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Practitioner
answer

Celiac disease inhibits your body's ability to absorb vital nutrients. Failure to get vitamins, minerals, fiber, sugars, and fats from your food deprives your bones, tissues, organs, muscles, and brain from getting the fuel they need to function properly.

In infants and young children, there is often a failure to grow at a normal rate and sometimes a failure to thrive because the body feels underfed or malnourished no matter how much the child consumes.

Adults often experience weakness and fatigue because they are unable to properly absorb iron. The bones become brittle from lack of calcium and diabetes may occur due to sugar imbalances. The inability to absorb vitamin B-12 can cause damage to the nerves resulting in a tingling sensation in the limbs. Women may notice an irregular menstrual cycle and difficulty conceiving a child resulting from an insufficient supply of hormones to the reproductive organs.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.