Children with celiac disease (CD) need to adhere to a gluten-free diet, but such a nutritional plan carries some disadvantages. New findings show that children with CD have lower weights and body mass index (BMI) z-scores despite consuming more calories and fat than healthy controls.
In a case-control cross-sectional study, the researchers set out to determine whether children with CD, who must adhere to a gluten-free diet throughout their lives, were subject to compromised nutrition as a result.
The researchers compared the energy, macronutrients, micronutrients, and fiber of the diets of children aged 2 to 18 years who had CD (n=65) with those of healthy controls (n=65), who were matched based on age, gender, and socioeconomic status.
The results showed that participants with CD consumed an additional 222.4 kcal and 637.2 kcal total fat per day than the healthy controls. The researchers found no differences between the two groups in regard to sugar, fiber, or other macronutrients or micronutrients. There was also no difference in dietary intake attributable to socioeconomic status among the children with CD.
In addition, participants with CD had lower weight z-scores and BMI z-scores compared with healthy controls.
Sue A, Katz T, Sutherland R, et al. Evaluating the dietary intakes of energy, macronutrients, sugar, fiber and micronutrients in children with celiac disease. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. Published online May 11, 2020. doi:10.1097/MPG.0000000000002743