So What’s the Difference?
Many people suffer from wheat allergies and/or gluten sensitivity and thus avoid gluten, but these conditions are not synonymous with Celiac disease. Celiac is an auto immune disorder, and when people diagnosed with Celiac ingest gluten, their bodies’ immune systems attack their small intestines, targeting the small fingerlike projections on the lining (called villi) that help to absorb nutrients from food. When they are damaged, nutrients are not properly absorbed during digestion, leading to a host of other health issues, each with their own symptoms. The only treatment is going gluten-free for life. When people with Celiac remove gluten from their diet, their small intestine can heal, and many of the secondary health problems can, over time, get better. Think you or a loved one might have Celiac? Visit celiac.org to find out more.