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New Pill Will Let People With Celiac Disease Eat Gluten-Filled Meals Of Their Dreams
Bring on the gluten

All Hoon Sunwoo wanted was to drink a beer with his friend. But his friend has celiac disease, an autoimmune condition in which a person generates an immune response to gluten, a mix of proteins found in anything from pasta to soy sauce. The resulting inflammation limits that person’s ability to digest and absorb key nutrients from food. Luckily for his friend, Hoon Sunwoo is a professor of pharmacology at the University of Alberta, and he’s spent the last 10 years developing a pill that his friend could take before drinking a beer so that he wouldn’t feel sick afterward.

When a person with celiac disease takes the pill, antibodies found in egg yolk coat the gluten as it passes through the digestive tract. That way, it doesn’t stimulate the sensitive gluten receptors in the small intestine. The pill has to be taken five minutes before eating, and works for a maximum of two hours, during which the person could chug beer or chow down on pizza worry-free.

The pill isn’t a treatment or a cure for celiac, Sunwoo tells the CBC—it’s just a way to improve a patient’s quality of life.

Through a partnership between the University of Alberta and biotech company IGY Incorporated, the pill completed its first phase of clinical trials two months ago in Canada showing that it’s safe. Its developers plan to start the next phase showing the pill’s efficacy next year. If all goes well, the pill could be available commercially in just two to three years, according to some reports.

Celiac disease is present in one in every 100-200 persons in the U.S. It is an inherited disease in which eating foods with gluten leads to inflammation and damage to the lining of the small intestine. This impairs intestinal function, leading to problems like belly pain, bloating, gas, diarrhea, weight loss, skin rash, bone problems like osteoporosis, iron deficiency, small stature, infertility, fatigue, and depression. Eep!

From the TED-Ed Lesson What’s the big deal with gluten? - William D. Chey

Animation by Stretch Films, Inc.

Sorry gluten-free bandwagoners — It’s not any healthier for you.

A recent George Institute for Global Health study has found no evidence that the nutritional value of gluten-free food differs significantly from baseline food products. While those with celiac disease are in their own category, the study found those eating gluten-free food for their “health benefits” may be grasping at straws. In fact, gluten-free food has less of one nutritional necessity.

MAY- is the month of coeliac awareness

Hello everyone! so you may not know this but I have coeliac disease, and as the month of May (and more specifically the week commencing the 11th) is the time devoted to raising coeliac awareness, I thought I would talk to you guys about it

Coeliac (or celiac) disease is an autoimmune condition which causes the body to mistake the gluten protein as an invader and ‘attack’ it in the small intestine. These leads to something called villi atrophy- in which the finger-like projections in the small intestine are destroyed and the whole small intestine becomes inflamed. Because of this, the body suffers from digestive issues, malabsorbtion and malnutrition. 

This leads to many horrible symptoms such as:

I was diagnosed with coeliac disease in November 2013 after being ill for around 6 years. The average time it takes for a diagnosis in the UK is between 8 and 12 years. By the time I was diagnosed I weighed 6 stone, and had severe dehydration and nutrient defeciences. I was told multiple times by doctors that I was suffering from IBS, without them carrying out a simple blood test to make sure nothing more sinister was going on.

Many people think that coeliac disease is not a serious disease, that it is just some sort of food intolerance that makes people a little windy. No. While the severity of symptoms do vary, it is a serious condition which left untreated can lead to an increased risk of bowel cancer, osteoporosis and neurological conditions. Also, as coeliac disease is an autoimmune condition, we are at greater risk of having other conditions such as asthma, Chron’s disease, lupus etc.

In fact, even 1 ½ years after being diagnosed I am still suffering from health conditions because my small intestine has not yet recovered. I am still underweight, I am still extremely weak and I still suffer from neurological symptoms. In Europe, the health related quality of life of people with coeliac disease is markedly lower than the normal population despite a gluten free diet. 

Whilst it is wonderful that coeliac disease can be treated so effectively with a gluten free diet, it should still be seen as a serious disease which can cause a lot of suffering and remains with us all of our lives. 

In the press and media recently it seems to be popular to make a gluten free diet and people with coeliac disease the brunt of stupid jokes. I am not weak, it is not funny to shove a pie in a coeliacs face, and no you are not gluten free intolerant. Stop. For me, a gluten free diet is not a lifestyle choice, it is keeping me alive.

There are several issues at the moment that need addressing:

  • the negative perception of coeliac disease by the public and media
  • the horrendously long time it takes to get a diagnosis 
  • the quality of treatment once diagnosed
  • the price and quality of gluten free goods 
  • the lack of knowledge and awareness of coeliac disease among the public and health care professionals 

To learn more about coeliac disease here is the Coeliac UK website

If you read all of this, thank you so much!

Please, please, please reblog this to raise awareness, I will love you forever! 

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What It’s Like to Be Celiac

Being gluten-free is the coolest thing since sliced bread… oh wait!