Celiac Awareness Month
The Canadian Celiac Association is the national voice for people who are adversely affected by gluten, and is dedicated to improving diagnosis and quality of life.
Celiac disease is a medical condition in which the absorptive surface of the small intestine is damaged by a substance called gluten. This results in an inability of the body to absorb nutrients: protein, fat, carbohydrates, vitamins and minerals, which are necessary for good health.
Although statistics are not readily available, it is estimated that 1 in 133 persons in Canada are affected by celiac disease.
A wide range of symptoms may be present. Symptoms may appear together or singularly in children or adults. In general, the symptoms of untreated celiac disease indicate the presence of malabsorption due to the damaged small intestine.
Common symptoms are anemia, chronic diarrhea, weight loss, fatigue, cramps and bloating, irritability.