Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Celiac, Diabetes or Allergy Sufferers

It's no fun for those of us who suffer from Celiac's disease, diabetes or food allergies. Food shopping is tedious and time-consuming and some of us can forget about going out to eat. One wrong ingredient added to our food can set us up for painful consequences which can last for hours, days, or even longer depending on the food and how sensitive our body is to it.

One of the most common culprits today is Celiac's disease. Celiac's disease is an autoimmune disorder of the small intestine affecting those who are genetically predisposed to it. Generally, the disease is believed to affect 1 in 1750 people worldwide and 1 in 150 in the United States alone. Celiac's disease is caused by a reaction to gluten (a protein found in wheat) and similar proteins found in barley and rye. Symptoms can be quite uncomfortable ranging from diarrhea, abdominal pain, fatigue and in some cases, mouth sores. For some, it only takes a small amount of gluten to be consumed to feel the effects of the disease. Although there is no cure for Celiac's, symptoms can be evaded by avoiding foods containing gluten or in some cases milk proteins.

Diabetes is another disease where certain foods need to be avoided. Type II diabetes, otherwise known as adult-onset diabetes, is the most common and affects 90% of diabetes cases today. The other 10% is caused by type I diabetes which is believed to be immunological in origin and lastly, gestational diabetes which is due to lack of insulin production during pregnancy. Additionally, obesity has been observed as the culprit for those of us who are genetically predisposed to diabetes. Most people who suffer from type II diabetes have to change their eating habits in order to control their body's blood sugar levels. Failure to control these levels can cause damage to blood vessels and nerves which could eventually lead to blindness, kidney failure and other severe complications. Because diabetes is becoming more and more prevalent in society today, many suffering from this disease have no choice but avoid certain foods in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Dietary constraints can be perplexing for most, especially if diabetes is onset later in life.

Lastly, those of us who suffer from food allergies can be sensitive to almost anything from peanuts, tree nuts, gluten, dairy and various other foods. Changing dietary habits is not an easy task but thankfully, there are more information sites and sources such as food plans, dietary charts and cook books to guide us in the right direction. There are many useful cookbooks with enormous amounts of information, recipes and information about how to avoid the foods our bodies don't want and enjoy the food we are able to eat without feeling as if we've lost the flavor or taste of some of our favorite foods.

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