Once you’ve been diagnosed as a celiac, it’s common to discover that you may also be deficient in some of the following: calcium, fiber, folate, iron, magnesium, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B12, vitamin D, or zinc. This is caused by the inability of your damaged small intestine to properly absorb the nutrients that your body needs. The lining of your small intestine is where all minerals, nutrients, and vitamins are absorbed in the body. Gluten interacts with the lining of the small intestine, causing inflammation and damage. Villi, which are small, finger-like projections in the small intestine, are flattened by gluten and then you aren’t able to absorb the necessary nutrients.
One challenge with discovering your deficiencies is the quality of some gluten-free products. Even though the gluten-free market has boomed in recent years, it’s common for gluten-free products to not be enriched and have lower amounts of fiber, folate, iron, niacin, riboflavin, and thiamin. Also, eating gluten-free foods can mean consuming a higher amount of calories from fat, and less from carbohydrates. One way to combat this is choosing foods that are naturally gluten-free and high in the minerals, nutrients, and vitamins that you’re deficient in. Also, you can possibly add vitamin or mineral supplements to your routine, until your small intestine has fully healed. You can ask your doctor to perform tests to determine what you’re deficient in and then start a game plan from there. You’ll want to ensure that any supplement you start is gluten-free and cleared by your doctor.
I’ve been gluten-free for almost 25 years and a few months ago, my doctor ordered blood work for me. She then told me that I was Vitamin D deficient and to add a supplement to my diet. I personally use Hum Nutrition supplements, which are gluten-free, non-GMO, sustainably sourced, have pure and potent nutrients, and do not have artificial colors or preservatives. In the information below, I provided a picture of the supplements I’m currently taking and the description of each one that Hum Nutrition provides on the bottles.
The “Daily Cleanse” supplement helps detox the skin, liver, bowel, kidneys, lungs, and lymphatic system. The “Flatter Me” supplement helps optimize protein, carb, fiber, and fat breakdown and helps with nutrient absorption and relief from indigestion and bloating. The “Base Control” supplement helps fill potential nutrition gaps. The “Here Comes the Sun” supplement is my Vitamin D and helps support the skin, mood, immune system, and calcium absorption.
After following a strict, gluten-free diet for awhile, your small intestine is able to recover and properly absorb nutrients again, and you may then be able to stop any supplements you’ve started. You can work with your doctor (gastroenterologist), nutritionist, or registered dietitian, to determine whether or not that would be beneficial for you.
Have a wonderful day!
“It is health that is real wealth and not pieces of gold or silver.”Mahatma Gandhi