Celiac disease and obesity: need for nutritional follow-up after diagnosis

Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010 Nov;64(11):1371-2. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2010.161. Epub 2010 Aug 18.


More than 20 years of serological approach to diagnosis of celiac disease (CD) has deeply changed the classical clinical presentation of the disease, and some reports indicate that CD and obesity can coexist in both childhood and adolescence. We reviewed clinical records of 149 children with CD followed in our institution between 1991 and 2007, considering weight, height and body mass index (BMI), both at diagnosis and after at least 12 months of gluten-free diet (GFD). In all, 11% of patients had BMI z-score >+1 and 3% were obese (z-score >+2) at presentation. In our population, there was a significant (P=0.008) increase in BMI z-score after GFD and the percentage of overweight (z-score >+1) subjects almost doubled (11 vs 21%, P=0.03). Our data suggest the need for a careful follow-up of nutritional status after diagnosis of CD, especially addressing those who are already overweight at presentation.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Body Mass Index
  • Celiac Disease / complications*
  • Celiac Disease / diet therapy
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diet, Gluten-Free / adverse effects*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Nutritional Status
  • Obesity / epidemiology
  • Obesity / etiology*
  • Prevalence
  • Retrospective Studies