Nicola is in her thirties. She has coeliac disease diagnosed nearly 10 years ago. She is a mother of one of my patients.
Over the years she had become slack with her gluten-free diet, and had symptoms when she ate gluten – however, she did not worry about too much. She did not really understand that eating gluten, once diagnosed with celiac disease, was going to harm her in the long run, increase her chance of autoimmune disease, and impact on her mortality (she would die younger!).
She came to my attention because I also had diagnosed her daughter with celiac disease.
Celiacs should have regular check-ups
I subsequently measured mum’s blood tests and it demonstrated the she had significant gut damage (high tTG and high DGP). She has now gone on a strict gluten-free diet and her blood tests are improving. This highlights the need for regular testing of people with celiac disease. Celiacs should have regular check-ups.
Just like people who have high cholesterol levels need their cholesterol tested regularly, so this with celiac disease need their antibodies tested regularly to ensure that they are on the right track.
Surely us as parents need to be a good role model for our children. We cannot “cheat on our diet” but expect our children to remain gluten-ZERO. I strongly encourage the WHOLE household to be gluten-free, if one of the children is needing to be gluten-zero. It shows commitment, and importantly, it stops cross-contamination of the house. The criticism that I get is “It costs too much”. “We cannot afford it”. I reply good food is expressive, bad food is cheap (or the other way round – cheap food is bad food). we all need to strive for high quality food inner kitchens.
It is also important to stress the “life-long” message. Forever! No cheating! It is a life style, rather than a diet. “Diets” are a temporary change in food, lifestyle is permanent.
by Rodney Ford