Frequently Asked Questions
No, I am a Dietetic Technician studying to become a Dietitian. My Instagram handle is @celiacdietitian because I wanted to secure the handle for when I graduate. I work tirelessly to ensure that it is clear that I am DTR and Student, not a Dietitian yet.
A Dietetic Technician is an individual who has completed an ACEND accredited bachelors degree in dietetics. They also have successfully passed the DTR exam.
Or, is an individual who has completed an ACEND accredited associated degree with a coordinated internship of 450+ hours of supervised practice and has also successfully passed the DTR exam.
I followed the second route, studying nutrition in college while also getting hands-on experience working in the field.
Dietetic Technicians are nutrition and dietetic professionals who generally fall below registered dietitians.
There is not a lot of research out there supporting or dissuading the use of gluten-free products if you have celiac disease. As of right now, the use of gluten-free products is not mandatory to live a celiac-safe lifestyle. Instead, choosing to use gluten-free beauty products is a personal choice.
I personally use gluten-free beauty products (click here to see what I use) because I touch my face too much to have to worry about whether or not I am exposing myself to gluten. I also personally break out in a rash when gluten touches my skin and experience hair-loss when I wasn’t using gluten-free shampoo, these factors have also influenced me to use gluten-free beauty products.
I should say however that my skin reactions are likely not due to celiac because gluten can not be absorbed through the skin. I likely am responding this way because of some other reason (I have sensitive skin or an allergy I’m not aware of).
You know you have celiac disease if you have been tested and diagnosed by your doctor. There are over 300+ symptoms of celiac disease and you can not be diagnosed solely based on symptoms, you need to be tested for it.
There are over 300+ known symptoms of celiac disease, some common ones are:
- Bloating / gas
- Discolored teeth
- DH (dermatitis herpetiformis)
- Joint pain
- Weight change
- Thin bones (- beyondceliac.org)
It’s important to note that you can have no outward symptoms of celiac but still have the disease.
This is definitely a question to ask your doctor. There is no one answer fits all and healing is dependent on multiple factors. Your small intestine can heal in as short as a few months to as long as a few years.
“Normalization of abnormalities may occur within one year, but generally takes longer, depending on the severity of villous atrophy, level of dietary compliance and age at diagnosis
(Dickey et al, 2000; Kaukinen et al, 2002; Lee et al, 2003; Abrams et al, 2004)” – Eat Right Pro Evidenced Based Library
This question is sort of related to the above question. Most people diagnosed with celiac disease can heal their small intestine after diagnosis. There is a small (emphasis on small) number of people with celiac disease who have what’s called “Refractory Celiac Disease” which is defined by a few things, one of which is your small intestinal health not improving, despite following a strict gluten-free diet.
If you’re concerned or have questions about your intestinal health, please bring them up with your doctor.
Everyone’s gluten-free meal-pattern will look different. Everyone has different standards that they are comfortable with and that impacts their quality of life differently. That being said, in general, you do not have to ONLY buy certified gluten-free products. If you’re unsure about if your standards are celiac-safe, 1:1 support from a dietitian can be a great resource to make sure you’re staying on the right track!
The most important and helpful thing you can do to heal your gut after a celiac diagnosis is to eat gluten-free. Research shows that complying with a strict gluten-free diet has the most impact on repairing your small intestine.
Several studies report that improvement in villous atrophy is not dependent on the type of gluten-free dietary pattern; however, villous atrophy is significantly associated with dietary compliance.
(Janatuinen et al, 1995; Kemppainen et al, 1998; Kaukinen et al, 1999; Selby et al, 1999; Lohiniemi et al, 2000; Janatuinen et al, 2000; Ciacci et al, 2002; Janatuinen et al, 2002; Peraaho et al, 2003; Hogberg et al, 2004; Peraaho et al, 2004; Baudon et al, 2005; Ciacci et al, 2005) – Eat Right Pro Evidenced Based Library
That being said, that doesn’t mean there aren’t other things you can do to help support your gut health. In fact, there are tons of fairly easy habits you can build to improve your gut health beyond eating gluten-free. These things just aren’t as important as staying gluten-free.