Almost all of us have met with information about coeliac disease, but it often turns out that when asked about specifics we are helpless. Therefore, it is worth asking ourselves how to recognize this disease, whether it can be prevented and how the diet of the sick person should look like.
Speaking of coeliac disease, one cannot forget to mention gluten, i.e. the protein we deal with in four basic cereals - life, barley, oats and wheat. Of course, gluten does not always take the same form, so it has its specific form in each cereal. It is gluten that makes the bread delightful with its taste and is more fluffy and resistant to drying out. There is no denying that its presence arouses satisfaction. However, in certain situations gluten can be extremely dangerous.
Is it possible to prevent coeliac disease?
Speaking of coeliac disease, we should not forget that we are dealing with a genetically determined disease. However, there is no denying that the wrong diet of a small child is often responsible for it. Therefore, it seems crucial for parents to follow the guidelines for introducing new products into their infant's diet. The recommendations of the Mother and Child Institute say that for the first 10 months of life, the child should not have any contact with gluten. Only then can it be introduced, but even then it should be done gradually. Studies confirm that excessive haste in this area may affect the appearance of symptoms of coeliac disease.
How to recognize the first symptoms of the disease?
Among the symptoms characteristic for children who face the problem of coeliac disease, the most common are: weight deficiency, emaciated appearance, reduced appetite, presence of fatty stools, bloated tummy and a tendency to apathy and irritation. They are caused by difficulties in absorbing nutrients. Fats are excreted despite their indigestion, while undigested carbohydrates undergo fermentation, which makes the stomach seem bloated.
Moreover, the baby's body is not properly supplied with energy and nutrients, and this contributes to weight loss. Contrary to many people's belief, coeliac disease is not a disease that only affects small children. It can also occur in adulthood. Often it is caused by strong stress, which occurs, among other things, before operations, changing residence and long journeys. However, chronic infection and changes in eating habits can also be an activator. It is also possible that coeliac disease can be seen even after 60 years of age.
Diet to treat the disease
If coeliac disease has already been diagnosed in an infant, the doctor usually recommends the administration of a special preparation that mitigates the effects of giving up cereal products. In other cases, the basis of treatment is the use of gluten-free diet, but it should be reckoned with that it will be continued until the end of life. It should not be forgotten that each case is considered individually, so it is not recommended to modify the diet without consulting your doctor. Already the first weeks of diet with the exclusion of gluten lead to the alleviation of symptoms typical of coeliac disease. It becomes necessary to eliminate products containing wheat, rye, oats and barley. Of course, one should not forget that not all products defined as gluten-free are such in reality, as gluten is often added for technological purposes.