Posts Tagged ‘Symptoms’

 

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Understanding Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) Deficiency in Celiac Disease

August 11th, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN


Riboflavin is a micronutrient, also known as Vitamin B2, which performs many important functions in the body. Riboflavin is a water-soluble vitamin that releases energy from carbohydrates, amino acids, and lipids. It plays a key role in specific amino acid production and provides antioxidant protection. Riboflavin is essential for growth and production of red blood cells and maintaining healthy skin, eyes, hair, and nervous system.

Riboflavin Deficiency

More than 34% of Americans get less than the RDA because, unlike other vitamins, riboflavin is not found in many foods.

Riboflavin depletion and/or deficiency is common before starting the gluten-free diet treatment. It frequently results from malabsorption due to damage to the small intestinal lining, but can also be depleted by excretion through diarrhea, excessive sweating or excessive urination. It is important to note that riboflavin deficiency can result from low serum proteins, which is a common occurrence in untreated celiac disease.

When riboflavin deficiency appears after starting the gluten-free diet, it is usually due to (more…)


Editor’s note: The study below, investigating whether the degree of villous atrophy (intestinal damage) correlates with the symptoms that are presented, found they do not. Therefore, more research is needed to find out why symptoms do not correlate with the degree of intestinal damage.

The pathologic range of villous atrophy seen on small intestinal biopsies ranges from severe (total villous atrophy and subtotal villous atrophy) to milder, partial villous atrophy. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Understanding Copper Deficiency in Celiac Disease

July 28th, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

 

Copper usually receives little coverage, but this unpretentious nutrient deserves center stage.  It is time for a serious role review.

Here are two reasons: First, deficiency of this trace mineral can debilitate and threaten our lives, and second, deficiency develops with increased frequency in those of us with celiac disease, unlike the general population.

Copper plays a critical role in the formation of a variety of proteins and enzymes involved in functions that keep us alive. Consequently, many disorders caused by copper deficiency stem from failure to adequately produce or release copper proteins and enzymes. (more…)

In the summer of 2008 when the term “gluten” first entered my realm of awareness, I was enjoying a lifetime of excellent health except for the occasional cold or flu.  In the summer of 2009 I was devastated to be diagnosed with a chronic and progressive kidney disease called Focal Segmental Glomerulosclerosis (or simply, FSGS) w/nephrotic syndrome.  Like celiac disease, FSGS is an inflammatory disease, enflaming and scarring the glomeruli, or filtering system, of the kidneys.  It was also that summer that I discovered that eliminating gluten from my diet put my disease into spontaneous, full remission, an extremely rare occurrence.  I am on no medication, and have better health than ever before.  Because of my fortune of getting my life back in short order, I want to share my experience with others so that others can be aware that eating gluten free does not only benefit those with celiac disease. 

How did I get so lucky to go from health to serious illness back to health in a short period of time? (more…)

Lactose, commonly known as “milk sugar”, may not be digested well if you are either born with absent or low levels of the enzyme lactase or if your intestine has been injured resulting in absent or low levels of lactase. Lactose is a disaccharide or two sugars linked. It is a combination of the two sugars, glucose and galactose. If intestines lack or are deficient in lactase you will not adequately digest lactose and you will experience gas, bloating, abdominal cramps and diarrhea shortly after eating something containing lactose.

The lactase enzyme is on the surface of the intestine cells where it is very vulnerable to intestinal injury. Some people are born with absent or low levels of lactase, therefore have congenital alactasia or hypolactasia. Between 80-100% of people of Asian, Native American, or African ancestry are lactose intolerant for this reason compared to only 15% of those of Northern European ancestry. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Understanding and Treating Zinc Deficiency in Celiac Disease

July 13th, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

The mineral zinc is classified as an essential nutrient due to the vital functions it performs in our bodies.  It is found in almost every cell of the body with highest concentrations in the liver, pancreas, kidney, bone, and muscle. High concentrations occur in the brain, middle ear, eye, prostate gland, sperm, skin, hair, and nails. This micronutrient is essential for the activity of approximately 100 enzymes. Enzymes promote biochemical reactions in the body.

Zinc supports a healthy immune system. It is needed for wound healing and DNA synthesis. It helps maintain our sense of taste and smell and is involved in energy metabolism, hemoglobin production, carbon dioxide transport, prostaglandin function, synthesis of collagen, protein synthesis, and vitamin A metabolism. Zinc is important for male fertility. It supports normal growth and development during pregnancy, childhood, and adolescence. (more…)

Editors’ note: This animal study investigating the effects of Lactobacillus rhamnosus, a strain of probiotic bacteria, on ulcers of the stomach lining of rats demonstrated that bacteria placed directly into the stomach significantly and according to dose reduced gastric ulcer size.  If the results of this animal research are reproduced in humans, it would demonstrate that probiotics may hasten recovery for people suffering from stomach ulcers.  The bacteria did not affect the function of normal gastric mucosa but normalized those with abnormal changes during ulceration. (more…)

 

Vitamin A was first identified in 1913 because of its crucial role in vision.  Subsequent discovery of its many other duties show that a deficiency will cause a broad range of health problems.

Vitamin A is not a single compound but actually comprises a fat-soluble family of molecules that includes retinol, retinal, retinoic acid, and retinyl ester. The term vitamin A also includes certain plant carotenoids called provitamin A because they are dietary precursors of retinol.

Vitamin A is essential for normal vision and eyeball health, a properly functioning immune system, gene regulation, reproduction, embryonic development, health and protection of all the tissues that line the body, including skin and mucosa of the lungs, digestive tract, urinary tract, and genital tract, bone metabolism and normal growth and strong teeth in children.

 

Vitamin A Deficiency

The United States National Institutes of Health recommends testing vitamin A levels in people with celiac disease at diagnosis. This is because vitamin A deficiency is common in celiac disease. Deficiency can result from incomplete digestion, absorption, or metabolism. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Osteomalacia in Adult Celiac Disease

July 5th, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Osteomalacia is common in celiac disease. Osteomalacia can occur at any age. It children, it is called rickets.  It is a metabolic bone disorder that involves slow loss of minerals from bone tissue throughout the skeleton, stemming from inadequate absorption of vitamin D. As minerals are dissolved from bone tissue to provide for essential functions elsewhere in the body, bones gradually lose their hardness.

Consequently, pronounced softening of the bones characterizes osteomalacia. Soft bones become deformed, especially bones of the arms, legs, spine, thorax and pelvis. The softer bones have a normal amount of collagen, a strong fibrous protein in the bone matrix (osteoid) that gives bone its structure and tensile capacity, but there is not sufficient calcium and phosphate minerals available to properly mineralize or be deposited in the osteoid to give it necessary hardness. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Health in Depth: Muscle Weakness in Celiac Disease

July 3rd, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Muscle weakness is the lack of muscle strength to perform physical work that we should be able to do, such as lifting objects, climbing steps or simply walking or getting up from a chair. Muscle weakness is different from muscle fatigue, which is the lack of energy to continue physical work once begun. Muscle weakness is also different from lassitude, or chronic fatigue, which is the feeling of tiredness or exhaustion but without loss of muscle strength.

Muscle weakness is common in celiac disease. It may stem from one or more nutrient deficiencies, associated disorders or complications. This article addresses only nutritional causes of muscle weakness resulting from malabsorption and/or loss of minerals from diarrhea or vomiting. (more…)