Coeliac – The Truths and Hardships

From May the 9th to May the 15th it is officially Coeliac Awareness Week and I know I’m a tad late but I believe it is a subject I wish to speak about!

I know many people with either intolerance or are diagnosed with Coeliac and I’m sure you do too! It is an unfortunate disease where it prevents what you can eat.

Coeliac disease is caused by a reaction to gluten, which are various proteins found in wheat and in other grains such as barley, and rye. Moderate quantities of oats, free of contamination with other gluten-containing grains, are usually tolerated but problems may depend on the type consumed. Upon exposure to gluten, an abnormal immune response may lead to the production of several different autoantibodies that can affect a number of different organs. In the small-bowel this causes an inflammatory reaction and may produce shortening of the villi lining the small intestine (villous atrophy). This affects the absorption of nutrients, frequently leading to anaemia.

Up until a few years most supermarkets provided expensive untasteful gluten free products and this is where the Awareness Week comes in. In the last few years, shops such as Morrisons, M&S, Asda, Tesco and Waitrose have upped their game producing wholesome products with decent taste. People who are diagnosed also get prescribed food which infortuantely tastes vile and tastes of “cardboard” says my mother.

Another point you should look out for is in restaurants. Recently, a law was passed that every menu should advocate whether their food contains gluten or not ;however, this isn’t the case for every restaurant! Me, my mum and her friend, who has an intolerance, went out for a meal and they had to look for ages to find a suitable meal and in the end they went for chips. My mums friend had had them before and had no reaction so proceeded to have chips but after eating the chips they were both ill! This is unacceptable! Please ask next time you order in a restaurant!

Yes, my mother has Coeliac and therefore we sometimes have gluten free pasta which I love! She always complains that all she wants is a basic roll – they do basic rolls but they break apart – so, she always throws them all over the table and shouts at the bread! I don’t blame her. Sometimes, she actually eats gluten because she is desperate but it does make her ill so it is not advised!

Some people are not intolerant or even have the disease yet they choose gluten free as a lifestyle option, most of the time, to lose weight! However, it is not good for your health. People believe you lose weight but recent scientific research says that you actually put on weight by going gluten free out of choice and as previously mentioned it can lead to anaemia. I am not here to judge your choice of food so don’t feel I am forcing you to eat gluten, it’s your life!

I will hopefully be uploading Gluten-Free recipes onto this blog as I know it will help people!

If you have coeliac or intolerance I feel for you – it’s hard  but not impossible!

Alysha x



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