Can you eat gluten when you have celiac disease?

In this article, we are going to answer the questions: can you eat gluten when you have celiac disease, what is gluten, what is celiac disease, what are the symptoms, causes, and risks, and what are the treatments and diet. 

Can you eat gluten when you have celiac disease?

You can’t eat gluten if you have celiac disease, eating gluten triggers an immune response in your small intestine. It can cause damage long-term causing damage to the small intestine lining and cause malabsorption. 

It can cause diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloating, and weight loss in the long term. It can also cause severe rash or dermatitis. It affects 1 in 100 people worldwide. 

What is gluten?

Gluten is a protein that is found in many grains that we use in our daily life. They include rye, barley, and wheat. Almost everything we eat nowadays has gluten. 

Gluten can be included naturally in some foods but also it can be added to products to add protein, texture, or flavor, that is why almost every pre-packaged food can have gluten. Here is a list of where you can find gluten. 


  • Bread
  • Baked goods
  • Soups
  • Pasta
  • Cereals
  • Sauces
  • Salad dressings


  • Malt
  • Food Coloring
  • Soups
  • Beer
  • Brewers Yeast


  • Rye Bread
  • Rye Beer
  • Cereals

Gluten helps food maintain its shape and gives volume, it acts like glue that helps food keep its form. 

Oats naturally don’t have gluten but because oats are processed with other food they may contain gluten.

What is celiac disease?

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease that causes damage to the small intestines of people that are allergic to it. With time, the small intestine lining becomes damaged. Without a diagnosis, people with celiac disease have malabsorption because of the inability of the small intestine to absorb nutrients into the bloodstream. 

Celiac Disease is a serious illness, you need to be careful with cross-contamination. It is a hereditary disease, people with a first-degree relative with celiac disease have a 1 in 10 risk of developing celiac disease. 

If you go underdiagnosed or untreated, it can result in serious complications

What are the symptoms of celiac disease?

  • Diarrhea
  • Weight Loss
  • Bloating and gas
  • Abdominal pain
  • Constipation
  • Vomiting 
  • Itching skin
  • Headaches and fatigue
  • Bone and joint pain
  • Acid reflux and heartburn
  • Mouth ulcers
  • Seizures

What are the causes and risks of celiac disease?

The causes of celiac disease are hereditary. The immune system is designed to protect us from outside invaders: pathogens, viruses, and bacteria. 

In the case of people with celiac disease, food that contains gluten activates the immune system and attacks the small intestine causing inflammation and long-term malabsorption. 

People with celiac disease have a 2x greater risk of developing coronary artery disease and a 4x greater risk of developing small bowel cancers. 

Untreated celiac disease can lead to type 1 diabetes, dermatitis, anemia, osteoporosis, infertility, miscarriage, and neurological problems like migraines, short stature, heart disease, and intestinal cancer. 

What are the treatments and diets for celiac disease?

The only treatment is to maintain a gluten-free diet. Ingesting even small amounts of gluten can be fatal for people with celiac disease. They need to be careful with cross-contamination. It can take up to one or two years for an adult to become healthy after eliminating gluten from their diet. 

What can I eat if I have celiac disease? 

Don’t get scared. There are a lot of gluten-free options. You just need to check all food labels for gluten and look for certified gluten-free products if you are buying prepackaged food. 

Fruits and vegetables are free of gluten, so the cleaner your diet, the farther from gluten you can be! 

  • Avoid barley, rye, and wheat. Look for gluten-free options for baking, it needs to be gluten-free certified.
  • Be careful with rice, oats, and corn. They need to be gluten-free certified because factories can manufacture wheat, rye, or barley too, and can have cross-contamination.
  • You can use potato, rice, soy amaranth, quinoa, buckwheat, bean flour, sorghum, arrowroot, and cornflour as well as tapioca. 

Here are some gluten-free recipes.


This article answered the questions: can you eat gluten when you have celiac disease, what is gluten, what is celiac disease, what are the symptoms, causes, and risks, and what are the treatments and diet. 


What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.