Coeliac sufferers risk losing vital nutrients, Kirkman can help

Many coeliacs don't realise that they also need to replace vital nutrients when they change their eating habits

One in 100 people worldwide suffer from coeliac disease. Currently, the only treatment available is a gluten-free diet, but many who are diagnosed do not realise, or are not informed, that they also need to replace vital nutrients when they change their eating habits.

Gluten, found in wheat, barley or rye, contains important nutrients, including protein — one of the basic building blocks of life, needed for bones, hair, cartilage, skin and muscle tissue.

It's also used to produce enzymes, and when this function is prohibited in those with coeliac disease, serious digestive problems have the potential to develop.

Because many sufferers of coeliac disease choose post-transitional diet foods that are not rich in the kinds of nutrients normally found in a gluten-included diet, many more nutritional deficiencies can occur. These include vitamin D, calcium, iron and, in rarer cases, vitamin B-12 copper, folate, magnesium and zinc.

Kirkman, an Oregon-based nutritional supplement manufacturer, offers individuals with coeliac disease a full line of gluten-free supplements (more than 400 products), from which to choose.

In addition, Kirkman makes probiotics and enzymes to help digest gluten as well as to mitigate the potential damage from unintended or unknowing ingestion of gluten.

Gluten is made up of both glutenin and gliadin proteins. Kirkman's DPP-IV enzyme formulas, were created especially to help digest glutenin. To date, there aren't any commercially available enzymes to digest gliadin, however research for this is under way.

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