Quinoa Well Tolerated in Patients with Celiac Disease

Released: 16-Jan-2014 10:00 AM EST
Embargo expired: 21-Jan-2014 8:00 AM EST
Source Newsroom: American College of Gastroenterology (ACG)
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Citations American Journal of Gastroenterology

Newswise — Bethesda, Maryland, (January 21, 2014) – Adding quinoa to the gluten-free diet of patients with celiac disease is well-tolerated, and does not exacerbate the condition, according to new research published in The American Journal of Gastroenterology. Dr. Victor F. Zevallos, from the Department of Gastroenterology, King’s College London, United Kingdom, evaluated the in-vivo effects of consuming quinoa in adult celiac patients. Quinoa, a highly nutritious grain, is traditionally recommended as part of a gluten-free diet. However, in-vitro data suggests that quinoa storage proteins can stimulate innate and adaptive immune responses in celiac patients.

Celiac disease is an immune-based reaction to dietary gluten (storage protein for wheat, barley and rye) that primarily affects the small intestine in those with a genetic predisposition and resolves with exclusion of gluten from the diet.

“The clinical data suggests that daily consumption of quinoa (50 grams) can be safely tolerated by celiac patients,” said Dr. Zevallos. “Median values for all the patients’ blood tests remained within normal ranges, and triglycerides and both low and high density lipoproteins decreased. We also found a positive trend towards improved small intestine morphology, particular a mild hypocholesterolemic (very low cholesterol) effect. It’s important to note that further studies are needed to determine the long-term effects of quinoa consumptions in people with celiac disease.”

The study tracked nineteen celiac patients as they consumed 50 grams of quinoa every day for six weeks as part of their gluten-free diet. Participants were free to choose the cooking method for the quinoa. Dr. Zevallos and researchers evaluated diet, serology and gastrointerestinal parameters, as well are detailed histological assessments of ten of the patients before and after consuming quinoa. Full blood count, liver, and renal profile were used to follow the health status of all the patients. Iron, vitamin B12, serum folate and lipid profile were also used to determine any effects of quinoa on the patients’ gluten-free diet.

For more information on Celiac Disease visit: http://patients.gi.org/topics/celiac-disease/

About the American College of Gastroenterology
Founded in 1932, the American College of Gastroenterology (ACG) is an organization with an international membership of more than 12,000 individuals from 80 countries. The College's vision is to be the pre-eminent professional organization that champions the evolving needs of clinicians in the delivery of high quality, evidence-based, and compassionate health care to gastroenterology patients. The mission of the College is to advance world-class care for patients with gastrointestinal disorders through excellence, innovation and advocacy in the areas of scientific investigation, education, prevention and treatment. www.gi.org

About The American Journal of Gastroenterology
The American Journal of Gastroenterology is published on behalf of the American College of Gastroenterology by Nature Publishing Group. As the leading clinical journal covering gastroenterology and hepatology, The American Journal of Gastroenterology provides practical and professional support for clinicians dealing with the gastroenterological disorders seen most often in patients. Published with practicing clinicians in mind, AJG devotes itself to publishing timely medical research in gastroenterology and hepatology. The Co-Editors-in-Chief are William D. Chey, MD, AGAF, FACG, FACP of the University of Michigan and Paul Moayyedi, BSc, MB ChB, PhD, MPH, FRCP, FRCPC, FACG of McMaster University.
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