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Celiac disease is on the rise

Category: Autoimmune Diseases

Individuals who have ever had a bad reaction or experienced indigestion after eating a wheat, barley or rye product may benefit from celiac disease testing. The condition is becoming increasingly common and it can have serious consequences for those who are unaware of their status.

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder in which the body's own immune system begins to attack the intestines after gluten has been eaten. Gluten is a protein that is found in the majority of foods made from wheat, barley and rye.

Nadine Pazder, a dietitian at Morton Plant Hospital in Tampa, told the St. Petersburg Times that the condition can often to lead to malabsorption of many important vitamins and nutrients, leaving individuals vulnerable to a range of health complications.

"That's why these patients are diagnosed with anemia, low bone density at an early age, all sorts of things because they aren't getting any nutrients from food," she told the news source.

The condition has become much more common in recent years, affecting more than 3 million people, according to While the number of people developing the disease has climbed, few ever receive an accurate diagnosis of their illness.

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