Diet and Nutrition

Ice Cravings Associated with Celiac Disease

Ice Cravings Associated with Celiac Disease

Ice Cravings Associated with Celiac Disease

A recent trend has been discovered that extreme ice cravings may actually indicate the presence of celiac disease. As crazy as this sounds, multiple people across the web have been discussing the oddity of this subject and what it means. A craving for ice is a sign of what’s called “pica,” which is the desire to eat nontraditional, usually inedible foods. Pica commonly occurs during childhood or pregnancy, but may also be a symptom of certain diseases. 

Commonly during childhood or pregnancy,pica occurs and it is a craving for ice. It mayalso be a symptom of a disease. Celiac disease is genetically inherited and it is an auto immune disease. The small intestine may get damaged due to the ingestion of gluten. This in turn affects the absorption.  When certain gene interacts with gluten based food, then celiac disease occurs. Sometimes celiac disease is activated by pregnancies, viral infections, childbirth, surgery or emotional stress. The reaction of the body to the gluten in the food may damage the villi. The risk may increase due to certain genetic variation. Celiac disease causes constipation, chronic diarrhea, vomiting, abdominal bloating, fatigue, foul smelling stool, weight loss, irritability, ADHA, dental enamel defects and delayed puberty. Further issues may arise when celiac disease goes untreated. These include anaemia, weight loss caused due to malnutrition. The nutrients are not absorbed properly by the small intestine. 

A variant of pica is craving ice. Normally in children it occurs but those adults with celiac disease may also have this. More commonly this specific type of craving occurs during pregnancy and when the iron levels are low. But according to some studies some symptoms of iron deficiency particularly glossitis may be relieved by iron. To such people ice may taste better. This is the connection between celiac disease and ice cravings.

Recent studies have shown the link between iron deficiency and its link to celiac disease. A connection was seen in people with gluten sensitivity also having iron deficiency anaemia. In several ways deficiency of iron can be caused by gluten. When the small intestine is damaged, malabsorption of iron may take place. The production of acidic cells are damaged which is essential for iron absorption. Thus causing anaemia which causes deficiency of oxygen. The person may not be able to generate energy thus causing a cyclic state.

Iron forms lactoferrinin the body. The immune system uses this protein to fight certain infections which includes the viral, bacterial, fungal or parasitic infection. People need to eat dark chicken, beef, lamb and turkey to replenish the iron. Some may include prune juice, pumpkin seeds and raisins. Studies have revealed that despite going gluten free some people with celiac disease still suffer from deficiency of iron. These people may stills how signs of pica. The ferritin level should be above 45. Along with food containing iron, supplements of iron may be required, if the ferritin level is low. The supplements however cause constipation, stomach pain and nausea. As a last resort to provide the necessary iron levels, doctors may use iron bysglycinate. Iron levels can be tested by serum ferritin.  If a personcontinually has low levels of iron then they should ask for this test. 

Celiac disease may cause anaemia. Since celiac disease affects absorption of iron hence it is wise to monitor your iron levels if you have celiac disease. People should test themselves for celiac disease if they have craving or pica such as glue,ice, or dirt.