- What is celiac disease? Celiac disease is a chronic inflammatory disorder of the small intestine in genetically susceptible individuals. It is triggered by ingesting certain proteins, commonly referred to as “gluten” which is naturally present in some cereal grains.
- What is the estimated prevalence of celiac disease in the U.S.? Experts estimate that the percentage of the general population in the United States who has celiac disease is as high as 1%.
- Can celiac disease be cured? No, but health care professionals advise that it can be managed with diet. Typically, individuals who have this disease are advised to avoid all sources of gluten in their diet. Over time, strictly avoiding consumption of all gluten sources can improve the symptoms and reduce the associated health risks of celiac disease.
- What is gluten? The term “gluten” technically refers to a specific complex of proteins that forms when wheat flour is mixed with a liquid and physically manipulated, such as in the kneading of bread.
- How is the term “gluten” used in the context of celiac disease? In the context of celiac disease, the term “gluten” is used to collectively refer to gluten in wheat, and to the proteins in other grains that have been demonstrated to cause harmful health effects in individuals who have celiac disease. These grains are wheat (including different varieties such as spelt and kamut), rye, barley, cross-bred hybrids (e.g., triticale, which is a cross between wheat and rye), and possibly oats.
FDA’s Proposed Gluten Free Labeling: FDA – Gluten-Free Labeling
For More Information:
American Dietetic Association
120 South Riverside Plaza, Suite 2000
Chicago, IL 60606–6995
Celiac Sprue Association/USA Inc.
P.O. Box 31700
Omaha, NE 68131–0700
Phone: 1–877–CSA–4CSA (1–877–272–4272) or 402–558–0600
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