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Can Fiber Intake During Pregnancy Reduce Child’s Risk Of Celiac Disease?

by | June 11, 2019

A new Study, analyzing 88,000 plus Norwegian children and their mothers, found a link between high fiber intake during pregnancy and the possibility of reducing the child’s risk of celiac diseases. Learn more about the study here.

Fiber Intake During Pregnancy Reduces Child’s Risk Of Celiac Disease
Photo by Ignacio Campo on Unsplash

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Fiber Intake During Pregnancy Reduces Child’s Risk Of Celiac Disease

The new study is reportedly one of the first of its kind when it comes to linking fiber-intake during gestation with assessing the possibility of a child’s celiac risk in the future. For the study, researchers analyzed more than 88,000 Norwegian mothers and their children who gave birth between 1999 to 2009, Live Science reports. The children were followed for diagnosis of celiac disease for 11 years, whereas the mothers were inquired about their gluten and fiber intake in the 22nd week of pregnancy, as per reports.

As a result of the analysis and follow-up, what came out was that mothers who had had 19 grams (or less fiber a day) during their gestation, had children more prone to getting celiac as compared to mothers with high fiber intake (45 grams a day) where the chances were noted to be reduced by 34%. Implying that a high-fiber intake during pregnancy is linked to a decreased risk of celiac disease in children. The study reportedly referred to fibers from fruits and veggies, rather than cereals.

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However, it must be noted that the researches have also cautioned on the study’s preliminary status. Lead author of the study, Dr. Ketil Størdal said in a statement

“Currently, there is very limited data on the association between maternal fiber or gluten intake during pregnancy and the risk of celiac disease in children.

“We cannot yet recommend any specific dietary measures during pregnancy to prevent celiac disease, and this needs to be further studied.”

Dr. Ketil Størdal via eurekalert.org

Dr. Størdal also happens to be a pediatric gastroenterologist at Østfold Hospital Trust in Norway and a research professor at the Norwegian Institute of Public Health.

Important point: the study is in a preliminary stage and reportedly didn’t find any link in a child’s predisposition to celiac disease with the mother’s gluten intake, whatsoever. Størdal clarified, saying “Our findings do not support gluten restriction for pregnant women”

Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is an auto-immune reaction to a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye, called gluten. It often induces symptoms to classic diarrhea, with symptoms ranging from bloating, wind, fatigue among others.

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Fiber Intake During Pregnancy Reduces Child’s Risk Of Celiac Disease

There is no cure for the condition as such, however, complications can be prevented by strictly avoiding gluten intake. As a vegan, if you’re gluten intolerant, make sure to take enough compatible sources of nutrients to make up for the potential lacking nutrients.

Protein like tofu, nuts, seeds, and pulses can be beneficial. Ensuring calcium and iron is also equally vital. You can eat a number of green leafy veggies, beans, seeds and dry fruits like figs and apricots, soy milk and orange juice, Coeliac UK recommends. Visit here for a more detailed overview of nutritional needs as a celiac vegan.

What do you think about the study? Let me know your thoughts below.

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Debayan Paul

Digital Writer | West Bengal, India | [email protected]

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