Celiac disease happens when the body has an allergy to a type of protein called Gluten found usually in grains such as wheat, rye, barley etc. When those suffering from Celiac Disease consume food with gluten, the body triggers an abnormal response in the immune system. This in turn damages the inner lining of the small intestine rendering it difficult for it to absorb nutrients from food.
Researches link Vitamin D deficiency with Celiac Disease. Vitamin D is crucial for proper metabolism and bone health. According to a report by About Health, Vitamin D deficiency is observed in nearly 70% women and 64% men suffering from Celiac Disease.
Celiac disease leads to a mal-absorption of nutrients which can be a contributing factor to Vitamin D deficiency. Fortified foods are a good source of Vitamin D; however, those on a gluten free diet usually have foods that are not fortified with additional minerals and vitamins. Many of those who suffer from Celiac Disease also suffer from lactose intolerance and avoid dairy products in their diet which again contributes to lack of Vitamin D in their diet.
In addition, simply avoiding the Sunlight can also lead to a sharp drop in Vitamin D levels in the body.
The symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency are not as apparent as those of other deficiencies; however, optimum levels of Vitamin D are crucial for immunity and sound health. A severe deficiency can cause rickets in children, osteoporosis and osteomalacia and other bone diseases in adults, especially, menopausal women or the elderly aged above 70.
The current borderline Vitamin D level according to the larger scientific community is 20 ng/ml. Readings below this level are deficiencies while those above are generally considered not deficient. It is recommended to maintain the Vitamin D level between 35-40 ng/ml; however, experts have varying opinions on the same.
Spring is about to end and Summer is right around the corner meaning ample of Sunshine. Enjoy a good exposure of daily sunlight upto 15-20 minutes without using sunscreen to increase your Vitamin D level. Avoid getting over exposed to prevent sunburn.
However, if you suffer from Celiac disease, it is recommended to test your Vitamin D level and start supplementation as per your physician’s recommendation. Optimum Vitamin D levels are likely to provide an impetus to your metabolic processes and lead to better bone health and immunity.
Avoid self-medication as that may lead to more health problems.