Coeliac disease (pronounced see-lee-yak) is an auto-immune disease causing some adults and children to react to the gluten. Gluten is the protein in wheat, barley and rye. These grains are common ingredients in foods such as bread, cakes, pasta, beer, pizza and other manufactured foods.
Gluten can sometimes be contained within ingredients of foods, e.g. soups, sauces, gravy, crisps, chocolate, sweets and ready-meals. In these cases, it can be hard to tell if the food is safe to eat for coeliacs.
If a person with coeliac disease eats gluten, their intestine becomes damaged. This reduces their ability to absorb nutrients from food. This can lead to various symptoms and complications, if undiagnosed.
- Read about the causes of coeliac disease
- About choosing food
- Read about aspects of gluten-free living.