Coeliac Awareness Month
Coeliac disease is a common autoimmune disorder that affects approximately 1 in every 100 people in Ireland. It is a lifelong condition that can cause significant discomfort and health problems if left untreated. In recognition of this, May has been designated as Coeliac Disease Awareness Month, aimed at raising awareness of the disease and highlighting the importance of early detection and treatment.
Coeliac disease is a condition in which the immune system mistakenly attacks the lining of the small intestine when gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, is consumed. This leads to inflammation and damage to the lining of the intestine, reducing the body's ability to absorb nutrients from food. Symptoms can vary from person to person and can range from mild to severe. Some of the most common symptoms include abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, weight loss, and fatigue.
There is no cure for coeliac disease, but the condition can be effectively managed through a gluten-free diet. This involves avoiding all foods that contain gluten, including bread, pasta, cereals, and many processed foods. Individuals with coeliac disease must be diligent in reading food labels and may need to work closely with a registered dietitian to ensure they are meeting their nutritional needs.
If left untreated, coeliac disease can lead to a range of serious health problems, including osteoporosis, anemia, and an increased risk of certain types of cancer. It is therefore important to be diagnosed as early as possible. Diagnosis typically involves a blood test to check for the presence of certain antibodies, followed by a biopsy of the small intestine to confirm the diagnosis.
In Ireland, the diagnosis and treatment of coeliac disease are supported by the Coeliac Society of Ireland. This organisation provides information and resources to individuals with coeliac disease, including advice on following a gluten-free diet, finding gluten-free products, and connecting with others who have the condition. They also work to raise awareness of coeliac disease among the general public and healthcare professionals.
In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the availability of gluten-free products in Ireland. This is due, in part, to increased awareness of coeliac disease and a growing demand for gluten-free options. However, it is important to note that not all gluten-free products are created equal, and some may contain high levels of sugar, salt, or fat. It is therefore important to choose gluten-free products carefully and to focus on whole, unprocessed foods whenever possible.
In conclusion, coeliac disease is a common autoimmune disorder that affects many people in Ireland. It can cause a range of uncomfortable symptoms and can lead to serious health problems if left untreated. May is Coeliac Disease Awareness Month, aimed at raising awareness of the condition and highlighting the importance of early detection and treatment. If you suspect you may have coeliac disease, it is important to speak with your healthcare provider to get an accurate diagnosis and to work closely with a registered dietitian to manage the condition effectively.
Here at Delicious, we pride ourselves on delivering safe gluten free products that don't compromise on taste.