(BPT) - If you suffer from abdominal pain, diarrhea, bloating, joint pain, skin rash, mouth sores or tingling in the legs and feet, you may be one of the approximately 1 percent of Americans who are diagnosed with celiac disease. For those who are diagnosed with celiac disease, following a strict gluten-free diet is currently the only option available when seeking symptomatic relief. While the growing availability of gluten-free products available in stores may make it easier to manage these symptoms, is a gluten-free diet enough to make symptoms go away?
Contrary to popular belief, celiac disease is more than just an upset stomach. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that can impair the ability of the body to absorb necessary nutrients which can lead to other health problems like anemia, weight loss, depression, osteoporosis, infertility, lymphoma and dental issues.
It is often difficult to diagnose, because the symptoms can be similar to those caused by irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s disease, intestinal infections, lactose intolerance and depression, and each person experiences symptoms in a different way. Blood tests are the first step in a diagnosis of celiac disease.
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