Celiac Disease is caused by a reaction to gluten, a group of various proteins found in wheat and in other grains such as barley and rye. Moderate quantities of oats, free of contamination with other gluten-containing grains, are usually tolerated.
The occurrence of problems may depend on the variety of oat. It occurs in people who are genetically predisposed. Upon exposure to gluten, an abnormal immune response may lead to the production of several different autoantibodies that can affect a number of different organs.
In the small bowel, this causes an inflammatory reaction and may produce shortening of the villi lining the small intestine. This affects the absorption of nutrients, frequently leading to anaemia (a deficiency in the number or quality of red blood cells in your body. Red blood cells carry oxygen around your body using a particular protein called hemoglobin. Anaemia means either the level of red blood cells or the level of hemoglobin is lower than normal).
Diagnosis is typically made by a combination of blood antibody tests and intestinal biopsies.
Signs and symptoms of Celiac disease can include one of the following:
- Steatorrhea — pale, loose, and greasy stool
- Weight loss