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Healthy Eating Series: Celiac Disease

By: Lola Frailey Wednesday September 11, 2019 comments Tags: super food, noni superfood, gluten free

What is celiac disease?

Celiac disease (celiac sprue and gluten-sensitive enteropathy) is a genetic autoimmune disorder triggered by consuming the protein gluten. When an individual with celiac disease consumes gluten, the body overreacts damaging the villi (finger-like protrusions lining the wall of the small intestine). Damaged villi prevents the body from absorbing vital nutrients no matter how much one eats.

Did you know? Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and other grains. It is the protein that makes dough elastic and gives bread its chewy texture.

Celiac Disease Facts

  • Celiac disease affects approximately 1 in 133 people
  • Celiac disease is hereditary including 1st and 2nd generation
  • 83% of people with celiac disease are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed
  • 6-10 years is the average time a person waits to be correctly diagnosed in the US

Celiac Symptoms:

Some of the most common signs and complications of celiac disease are:

  • Osteoporosis (loss of bone density)
  • Osteomalacia (softening of the bone)
  • Rash on the skin (dermatitis herpetiformis)
  • Damage to dental enamel
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Fatigue
  • Reduced functioning of the spleen (hyposplenism)
  • Acid reflux
  • Diarrhea
  • Weight loss
  • Irritability
  • Abdominal Pain (gas, bloating, diarrhea, constipation)
  • Infertility
  • Anemia
  • Joint Pain
  • Delayed growth in children
  • Migraines
  • Malnutrition (fiber, iron, calcium, magnesium, zinc, folate, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B12, B6, copper, and vitamin D are common deficiencies)

Did you know? A stressful event such as a viral infection, surgery, pregnancy, or emotional trauma can trigger celiac disease.

Celiac disease can affect anyone. However, it tends to be more common in people who have:

  • A family member with celiac disease or dermatitis herpetiformis
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Down syndrome
  • Turner syndrome (female is missing an X chromosome)
  • Thyroid disease
  • Microscopic colitis (lymphocytic or collagenous colitis)
  • Addison's disease
  • Rheumatoid arthritis


Currently, there are no drugs to treat celiac disease. A strict gluten-free diet is the only known way to control the condition.

Naturally Gluten-Free Foods

The following grains and other starch-containing foods are naturally gluten-free:

  • Rice
  • Cassava
  • Potato
  • Tapioca
  • Beans
  • Quinoa
  • Millet
  • Buckwheat groats (kasha)
  • Arrowroot
  • Amaranth
  • Flax
  • Chia
  • Nut flours
  • Noni fruit 

Have you tried superfoods?

A superfood is a food that has more nutrients (antioxidants, phytonutrients, vitamins, and minerals) for your body when comparing calorie to calorie with another food. Superfoods are also known for high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. This could possibly aid the digestive system recover from a celiac flare up. 

On our certified organic family noni farm, we grow, pick and process the raw pulp of noni into our Noni Fruit Leather. Raw food from the whole fruit not juiced and not fermented for maximum potency. Our Noni Fruit Leather is gluten-free and research has shown raw noni pulp to be a high anti-inflammatory and a high antioxidant. Click here for a list of superfoods!




Lola Frailey

About the Author: Lola Frailey