If you are being treated for a blood disorder, it is time to look deeper and explore the underlying cause. Rather than simply addressing iron- or B12-deficiency anemia in isolation, ask WHY you have a deficiency in the first place. It is possible that damage to your intestines caused by gluten is preventing your body from absorbing the nutrients necessary to grow your red blood cells and keep your immune system healthy. And anemia is not the only blood disorder associated with celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity!

The Gluten Free RN is taking a closer look at the hematologic manifestations of celiac disease from anemia to hyposplenism. She explains the connection between disorders of the blood and bones, offering insight around why men with both anemia and osteoporosis are also likely to have celiac disease.

Nadine discusses the danger in taking H2 blockers or proton pump inhibitors for GERD long-term, describing how those medications decrease the gastric acid necessary for breaking down food. She also addresses what you can do to identify any nutritional deficiencies in your blood and reminds us why celiac patients have difficulty absorbing the nutrients necessary to form red blood cells. Listen in to understand how the skin reflects what’s happening internally and learn how to prevent a number of blood disorders with a gluten-free diet!

What’s Discussed: 

The hematologic manifestations of celiac disease

  • Anemia secondary to malabsorption of iron, folate and vitamin B12
  • Thrombocytosis, thrombocytopenia, leukopenia, venous thromboembolism
  • Hyposplenism, IgA deficiency and increased risk of lymphoma

Why iron supplements didn’t solve Nadine’s anemia

  • Couldn’t absorb supplements due to undiagnosed celiac disease

The connection between anemia, osteoporosis and celiac disease

  • B12 forms red blood cells made in long bones

The danger of taking H2 blockers and PPIs long-term

  • Decreases levels of gastric acid necessary to liquify food
  • Leads to bacterial overgrowth, gastritis

How to uncover potential nutrient deficiencies in your blood

  • CBC with differential (breakdown of red blood cells)

The conclusions of the 2007 study in Blood

  • Anemia and hyposplenism are most common complications of celiac disease
  • Obtain small-bowel biopsy in all patients with iron-deficiency anemia

The fat-soluble vitamins

  • A, D, E and K
  • Deficiency in one indicates malabsorption, potential celiac disease

The connection between DH and celiac disease

  • Skin disorders begin in intestines

Resources:

‘Hematologic Manifestations of Celiac Disease’ in Blood

Celiac Disease and Your Spleen

Dr. Ben Lynch: Folic Acid vs. Folate

‘The Thrombophilic Network of Autoantibodies in Celiac Disease’ in BMC Medicine

‘Hematologic Manifestations of Celiac Disease’ in Celiac Disease— From Pathophysiology to Advanced Therapies

‘Sarcoidosis, Celiac Disease and Deep Venous Thrombosis: A Rare Association’ in Balkan Medical Journal

‘Celiac Disease Manifesting with Deep Venous Thrombosis: A Case Report’ in Govaresh

‘Deep Venous Thrombosis and Bilateral Pulmonary Embolism Revealing Silent Celiac Disease’ in Case Reports in Gastrointestinal Medicine

‘How Often Do Hematologists Consider Celiac Disease in Iron-Deficiency Anemia?’ in Clinical Advances in Hematology & Oncology

‘Deep Vein Thrombosis Associated with Celiac Disease’ in Bratislavske Lekarske Listy

‘Celiac Disease Presenting with Immune Thrombocytopenic Purpura’ in Case Reports in Hematology

‘Lower Extremity Deep Vein Thrombosis Associated with Gluten-Sensitivity Celiac Disease’ in Terapevticheskii Arkhiv

Connect with Nadine:

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‘Your Skin on Gluten’ on YouTube

Melodies of the Danube Gluten-Free Cruise with Nadine

Books by Nadine:

Dough Nation: A Nurse’s Memoir of Celiac Disease from Missed Diagnosis to Food and Heal

Posted by Nadine Grzeskowiak, RN

Nadine is a 'food is medicine’ activist and is very proud of her work to educate all people about the power of food in health and wellness. Nadine is an expert consultant, professional speaker with over 1500 lectures to date, author of DOUGH NATION: A Nurse's Memoir of Celiac Disease From Missed Diagnosis to Food and Health Activism, podcaster, mom and former emergency/trauma/critical care nurse. Nadine is co-authoring her next book on the science of celiac disease.

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