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Research Roundup: August/September 2018

It’s not uncommon for celiac disease to develop in older patients and it’s important to make the diagnosis, says a group of researchers in Finland and the U.K. In a new study published in Alimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics, these researchers report that celiac disease is now being diagnosed more frequently in seniors. About a quarter of all celiac diagnoses are now made at the age of 60 and over. A fifth are made at 65 and older. And about 4 percent of new celiacs are diagnosed at age 80 and above.

Research Roundup: June/July 2018

Why are milk-allergic kids at risk for growth problems? Dairy constitutes a large part of the American diet, contributing calories and nutrients. In addition, children with milk allergy are more likely to have eczema and asthma, which may contribute negatively to growth rates, Keet noted, adding that additional study is needed. In the meantime, pediatricians and allergists should advise their patients about eating a healthy, nutrient-dense diet and monitor their growth over time.

Research Roundup: April/May 2018

A new study found that food allergies are on the rise in adults as well as children. The increase is seen across all ethnic groups. About half of all food-allergic adults reported they developed one or more food allergies after age 18. Shellfish is the most common food allergy in adults, affecting an estimated 3.6 percent of adults in the United States. This is a 44 percent increase in prevalence from the rate recorded in 2004. The study also found that nut allergy in adults (now about 1.8 percent) has risen 260 percent since a 2008 estimate.

Research Roundup: February/March 2018

A case recently published in the Journal of Medical Case Reports described a dramatic and surprising presentation of celiac disease. A 3-year-old Albanian girl came to a clinic with carpal spasms (involuntary muscle contractions) and paresthesia (numbness and tingling) in her hands. A physical exam revealed no other symptoms but a blood test showed the child had severe calcium depletion. A screening for celiac disease was conducted (among other tests) with positive results; the diagnosis was confirmed with a duodenal biopsy.

Research Roundup: December/January 2018

A recent study examined how thunderstorms can provoke asthma attacks even in those without a history of asthma (but with hay fever or pollen allergy). Thunderstorms have been associated with asthma outbreaks, particularly during pollen season. The first reported case was in 1983. Since then, asthma epidemics due to thunderstorms have occurred in Australia, the U.K., Italy, the United States and other places around the world.

Research Roundup: October/November 2017

A new study on peanut immunotherapy examined the effects of increasing the peanut protein threshold (called the eliciting dose) used with the Viaskin Peanut patch. Developed by DBV Technologies, the Viaskin Peanut patch delivers biologically active compounds to the immune system through intact skin. It is currently in Phase III trials and not offered for sale.

Healing Herbs & Spices for the Gluten-Free Kitchen

Spices have been part of ancient cuisines for a reason, Doherty says. Many pungent spices have gastrointestinal and antimicrobial properties. For instance, ginger helps fight inflammation and also acts as an immediate digestive aid for nausea. Oregano and basil have antifungal properties and can protect against infection. Herbs and spices offer a bevy of health benefits, agrees Bethany Doerfler, MS, RDN, clinical research dietitian in the division of gastroenterology at Northwestern Medicine in Chicago.

Research Roundup: August/September 2017

Swedish researchers have confirmed an association between celiac disease and anorexia nervosa, a disorder that causes disturbance in the way people view their body weight, prompting unhealthy fear of weight gain. Anorexia typically affects girls during adolescence and young adulthood, although it can occur in men, too. Genetic susceptibility may play a role. Recent genome-wide studies of anorexia indicate the condition shares genetic regions with type 1 diabetes and other autoimmune disorders. The dietary restrictions associated with the gluten-free diet might prompt disturbed eating patterns in susceptible young women, researchers suggested.

Research Roundup: June/July 2017

Gluten-removed beer may not be safe for people with celiac disease, according to a recent study conducted by the Gluten Intolerance Group at The University of Chicago’s Celiac Research Center. Researchers used blood samples from people with celiac disease to determine whether or not proteins in gluten-free beer and in gluten-removed beer would be recognized by antibodies present in their blood. No blood samples reacted to the gluten-free beer. However, a percentage of blood samples did react to the gluten-removed beer.

Gluten-Free Research Roundup

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) released new guidelines recommending the introduction of peanut-containing foods during infancy to reduce the risk of developing peanut allergy. For high-risk kids (those with severe eczema, egg allergy or both), peanuts can be introduced as early as 4 to 6 months under the supervision of a healthcare provider. For children with mild or moderate eczema, the guidelines recommend introduction around 6 months. For kids without eczema or food allergy, peanut-containing foods can be introduced according to family preference. In all cases, infants should start other solid foods before they eat peanut-containing foods.

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