Celiac disease Osteoporosis and OsteopeniaOsteopenia and Osteoporosis can be caused by untreated celiac disease. Why?This medical condition affects the small intestine and it is the small intestines that important nutrients are absorbed.
Someone who has this condition but is NOT following a gluten freediet will
have difficulty absorbing both calcium and Vitamin D. But both these nutrients are necessary for the normal functioning of the bone building cycle. As a result Osteopeneia andeven Osteoporosis are common in both children and adults with untreated and newly diagnosed celiac disease. (If you are diagnosed with this condition, it is worth askingyour health care provider about getting a base line dexa scan so you have a marker with which to measure your progress (or lack there of.)
When people with celiac disease Osteoporosis or Osteopenia eliminate all foods containing gluten, normal absorption of nutrients from the intestines is usually restored within a few months. (Older adults may find it takes up 2 years.) But a vast number of those with this condition show significant improvement in their bone density....especially if they follow the other life style strategies listedas natural approaches to bone building. See:
Recent scientific research:
1. A paper published in the World Gastroenterology Journal states:
"Pathological conditions such as celiac disease (CD) exacerbate the
process of bone loss, so that the occurrence of osteoporosis in celiac
subjects is of particular note: indeed, the screening of osteoporosis
patients for this disease is advisable, since it may be the only sign of
undiagnosed CD. ...." (underlining of test is mine).
2. Other research shows that some children and adults with celiac disease will not improve just following the gluten free diet. (Why you want the base line dexa scan.)
Researchers found that up to 20 per cent of those with celiac disease "produce antibodies that attack the OPG protein and stop it working properly. This results in rapid bone destruction and severe osteoporosis". This is important and could be the reason why your follow up dexa scan will show that your bone loss is not reversed. And some other treatment needs to be applied. To read the whole story click on Celiac disease Osteoporosis
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