Raise Celiac Disease Awareness as a Dietitian Nutritionist

While it’s estimated that 1% of the population — 1 in 133 Americans — has celiac disease, 83% are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed with other conditions. The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness dedicates the month of May to increasing awareness of gluten sensitivity and celiac disease, helping people to reduce their symptoms and live more comfortable lives. You can help people who suffer all year long by choosing a health care career in nutrition dietetics.

What is Celiac Disease?

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder. For those who suffer from it, ingesting gluten — a protein found in wheat, rye and barley — damages the small intestine, reducing nutrient absorption. While the disease affects people in different ways and with different levels of severity, common symptoms include:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Anemia
  • Bloating
  • Delayed Growth
  • Depression
  • Dermatitis Herpetiformis
  • Diarrhea
  • Dental Enamel Defects
  • Fatigue
  • Gas
  • Infertility
  • Joint Pain
  • Pale Sores in the Mouth
  • Migraines
  • Nausea
  • Numbness in the Legs
  • Osteopenia
  • Osteoporosis
  • Weight Loss

Make a Difference as a Dietitian

Dietitian nutritionists work closely with patients who have gluten sensitivities or celiac disease in a variety of places, ranging from clinics to corporations. They help people reduce or eliminate gluten from their diet and teach them about alternatives and how to read food labels. By helping patients avoid gluten as a dietitian nutritionist, you can help their  symptoms disappear within a few weeks, though full healing of the intestine can take several years.

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