Celiac Disease During Pregnancy - Causes, Symptoms, Diagnosis & Treatments

Celiac Disease And Pregnancy

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Are you expecting and down with an unusual abdominal pain? Are you feeling weak and experiencing a considerable weight loss during pregnancy? If you nodded along, chances are, you may have celiac disease. But don’t panic! Read on to learn causes, apparent symptoms, and effective treatments about celiac disease and pregnancy.

Celiac Disease And Pregnancy:

If your small intestine reacts negatively to gluten-rich foods during pregnancy, then you can suffer from celiac disease while expecting. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder that can damage your small intestine and lead to digestive problems, anemia, and other health issues (1).

Causes Of Celiac Disease During Pregnancy:

The exact cause of the pregnancy induced celiac disease remains unclear. However, medical researchers believe that celiac disease needs a ‘trigger’, a life or health event that makes your body reject gluten.

Pregnancy is one such trigger, which makes your body gluten sensitive, even if you never suffered from gluten-sensitivity before getting pregnant. A stressful pregnancy can lead to celiac disease.

Also, celiac disease occurs due to a genetic disorder that may stimulate the symptoms of the condition while you are expecting. If either or both of your parents suffer from celiac disease, you are at high risk of suffering from the disorder while expecting (2).

[ Read: Gluten-Free Pregnancy Diet ]

Symptoms Of Celiac Disease During Pregnancy:

Even though stomach upsets are common symptoms of celiac disease during pregnancy, you may experience other symptoms of the ailment while expecting. Other symptoms include:

  • Excessive fatigue
  • Substantial weight loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Constipation
  • Swelling and abdominal pain
  • Bloating
  • Joint pain
  • Irritability
  • Depression
  • Skin rash
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Anemia (3)

[ Read: Signs Of Diarrhea In Pregnancy ]

Diagnosing Celiac Disease During Pregnancy:

If you suffer from any of the above symptoms, you should see your doctor as soon as possible. You need to detect the cause of digestive disorders because if you fail to diagnose celiac disease while expecting then you are at a high risk of miscarriage.

Doctor runs a blood test to figure out anti-gluten antibodies. The doctor may also suggest upper endoscopy to study the condition of your intestine (4).

Risks Of Celiac Disease During Pregnancy:

If you suffer from celiac disease in pregnancy, then your body fails to absorb sufficient nutrients, and you end up with constant diarrhea and nutritional deficiencies. You tend to be at a high risk of having a baby with lower weight than normal. Depending on the severity of the ailment, you may also develop increased risk of anemia, preterm labor, and stillbirth (5).

Treating Celiac Disease During Pregnancy:

You need to treat the symptoms of celiac disease as soon as possible to ensure the safety of the unborn baby. Here are some effective treatments to treat the condition while expecting.

1. Follow A Strict Gluten-Free Diet:

Make sure you avoid eating foods containing gluten. Here is a list of grains containing gluten.

  • Wheat
  • Rye
  • Bulgur
  • Barley
  • Processed oats
  • Triticale

Avoid eating preparations of the above grains while expecting. Include nutritious gluten-free foods in your daily diet to ensure your body and fetus get all essential nutrients while expecting (6).

[ Read: Remedies For Bloating During Pregnancy ]

2. Vitamin And Mineral Supplements:

As your body fails to absorb vital vitamins and minerals when suffering from the celiac disease during pregnancy, consult your doctor for appropriate doses of mineral and vitamin supplements. Your doctor may prescribe supplements of the following nutrients to ensure you enjoy a safe and healthy pregnancy.

  • Vitamin K
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin B12
  • Iron
  • Calcium (7)

Did you suffer from any symptoms of the celiac disease while expecting? What did you do to treat the condition and ensure the safety of your unborn baby? Share your experience with other moms-to-be about celiac disease pregnancy. Leave a comment below.

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  • sona

    I had a normal healthy pregnancy knowing I have Celiac disease, and I also had a healthy normal pregnancy 10 years ago not knowing I had the disease. As long as you are staying gluten free and taking your pre natals, it should be fine. I am now breastfeeding my 4 month old who has been diagnosed with a milk allergy. So we are both gluten and dairy free.