Managing a Gluten-Free Pregnancy

  • Bread, pasta and breakfast cereals
  • Pizza bases
  • Biscuits, cakes and pastries
  • Some soy sauces, spices, mustards and mayonnaises
  • Some canned soups, sauces, ready meals and processed foods
  • Some chips and similar snacks
  • Beer, lager, stouts and ales

Gluten Hidden Here? Seriously?

Hidden sources of gluten include additives such as modified food starch, preservatives, and stabilizers made with wheat.

Because many corn and rice products are produced in factories that also manufacture wheat products, they can be contaminated with wheat gluten.

Gluten is sometimes used as an additive in unexpected products --such as lipstick and play dough. If the ingredients aren't listed on the label, ask the manufacturer for a list.

Looking Forward to Childbirth

Birthing: Celiac disease will not affect your labor or delivery. However, if your birthing plan includes a c-sections, ask your doctor about the sutures. Some contain gluten. The hospital can have gluten-free sutures available.

Your baby: Celiac disease is genetic so if you're a celiac the chances of your baby having it increases. What can you do for your child? Breastfeed! Studies suggest that breastfeeding, particularly when your baby first tries gluten, may significantly decrease the chance of acquiring celiac disease. The patients in this study were not followed for a prolonged period of time so it's not know if breastfeeding permanently decreases risk of developing celiac disease or simply delays it.

When's the best time to introduce gluten? Data suggests it's advisable to wait until after your baby is a year old or even longer.

Tanner was almost 16-months-old when he was tested. Before his appointment he had to eat gluten-containing foods for two weeks. It was a blood test and very rough for a little kid. We got the positive result back in 14 days. ~Becki

Unlike conditions that require medication or treatment that might harm your baby, treating celiac disease actually benefits your growing bean! A gluten-free diet overcomes pregnancy risk factors correlated with celiac disease and provides all the nutrients baby will need to build an amazing body and complex brain.

About the study:
D. Martinelli et al. Reproductive life disorders in Italian celiac women. A case-control study. BMC Gastroenterology. 2010 Aug 6;10:89. A significant correlation was observed between untreated celiac disease and threatened abortion, gestational hypertension, placenta abruption, severe anaemia, uterine hyperkinesia, intrauterine growth restriction (p < 0.001). A shorter gestation has on average been observed in untreated celiac women together with a lower birth weight of celiac women babies.

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