People who have been diagnosed with celiac disease or with gluten intolerance have to stick to a gluten-free diet. This means they have to stay away from wheat, barley, rye and other similar foods that can trigger an autoimmune response, causing them lots of digestive problems.

Celiac disease is more frequent in women than in men. This makes it a concern in case of pregnancy, as moms-to-be have to be very strict in their diet, if they want to reduce the risk of miscarriage or other complications. Extra steps to reduce risk in pregnancy can be found at

By simply maintaining a strict diet, these women have the same chances of delivering a healthy baby as the general female population. This is the most important benefit of a gluten-free diet during pregnancy, and the reason why all women should make sure they are properly diagnosed with celiac disease or gluten intolerance before they get pregnant.

As a matter of fact, the problem is that celiac disease is under-diagnosed, many people avoiding to go to a doctor unless they feel their life is threatened. They have digestive troubles, but they never associate them with the gluten intake. The lack of education and the poverty can determine people to live with such a medical condition for their whole life, without giving a single thought to the fact that they could feel much better, had they received the adequate treatment.

This leads to a big number of pregnant women who should avoid gluten, but have no idea about it. They eat bread, pasta and other cereals, thinking they have a healthy diet. They wonder why they feel bloated and sluggish, and why their babies have such a low birth weight, without realizing they have been eating the wrong foods for the entire nine months of pregnancy.

A gluten-free diet during pregnancy has benefits for the mother and for the baby alike. While celiac disease won’t affect labor or delivery, it is possible that it is a risk factor for c-sections. If the suture contains gluten, the mother could be in trouble, as her immune system is going to reject them. This is why all women intending to have a c-section should inform their doctor about their medical conditions.

By eating gluten-free, the mom-to-be has to cut cereal-based products from her diet. As she still needs a certain amount of calories and nutrients every day, she’s going to replace these foods with fruit and vegetables, thus offering the baby all needed nutrients for a healthy development inside the womb. Besides, such nutrients are highly beneficial for the brain. These babies have the potential of being smarter. Nonetheless, there are no studies to support this claim, so you shouldn’t probably worry too much about not eating enough fruits while pregnant.

The important thing is to avoid gluten, because celiac disease is genetic. This means your baby might have it, too, so you wouldn’t want to expose the baby to gluten too soon in life. A gluten-free diet during pregnancy, combined with several months of breastfeeding can decrease the risk of developing this condition in newborn babies.

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