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Coeliac Disease

What is Coeliac Disease?

Coeliac disease is a condition where the body’s immune system reacts to gluten. Gluten is a protein found in foods made with:

  • Wheat

  • Barley

  • Rye

  • Oats

Coeliac disease affects on average approximately 1 in 70 Australians

What is the treatment?

The only treatment is a strict life-long gluten free diet. Eating any gluten causes the small, finger-like projections (villi) in the bowel to become inflamed and flattened. Eating a gluten free diet allows the bowel wall to heal and digestion to return to normal.

What are the risks of not following a strict gluten free (GF) diet?

  • Consequences of small bowel damage and poor absorption of nutrients include:

  • Iron deficiency anaemia and/or other vitamin and mineral deficiencies

  • Osteoporosis

  • Weight loss

  • Gastrointestinal symptoms e.g. diarrhoea, nausea, bloating

Other complications which can relate to untreated coeliac disease include:

  • Infertility

  • Gastrointestinal cancer

  • Altered mental state

  • Increased risk of other autoimmune conditions

Ensure you see a specialist gastrointestinal dietitian for individualised advice to so that you are supported through all stages of your journey. For more information get in contact with us here at the


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