How to make sure that we absorb as many vitamins and minerals as we can

With coeliac disease we are constantly hearing of problems that many of us have regarding the intake of both vitamins and minerals leaving some with waves of tiredness and others feeling generally extremely unwell. I came across this article and thought it would be something that we all could read and may be it might help at least one of us. The jest of the article is the effect that caffeine has on vitamins and mineral absorption. Caffeine is in a wealth of things, especially non-alcoholic drinks that we are all inclined to drink in the form of coffee, tea, cola, sports drinks, etc...

23 Replies

  • Having read some of the comments at the bottom of the link above - I felt compelled to check to make sure there were other trusted sources so here are some:

    There are many more .. but those of you with a medical background may be able to add to this information.

  • juat found this,,, don't know whether it's helpful, but worth a read....

  • All very interesting and there are foods that are anti nutrients:


    Sadly we are out of touch with Mother nature and even some healthy foods are stopping us absorbing nutrients, because we do not prepare them properly.

  • I haven't come across this website before, Jerry - one to bookmark I think!

    It's amazing just how many facts, as coeliacs, we are constantly finding and absorbing to make us all feel 'well' .... I should imagine that in many areas now, we may closely be nearing the knowledge of many professionals on subjects related to our very complex condition.

    The programme with Mike Mosley about fasting was most interesting last night - it suggested that cutting back a few times on our food sets our bodies into a state of repair and this would benefit us all. We could do with a study of this specifically for coeliacs may be.

    Here is a written article about it that also has a link to the programme:

  • Hya again, I watched Horizon with interest and his whole physique improved in around 1 month. It's funny what you say about coeliac understanding of our health and well being. As my Dr said last week after I had a full blood screen how he hadn't seen anyone with cholesterol levels as low as mine and how being a coeliac gave me a really good understanding of what I ate and he described me as incredibly healthy. So for me last nights Horizon was very interesting as they had checked my triglyceride levels were low and they mentioned this. And I had never heard of this before so could relate to the tests he had.

    I wasn't impressed with eat what you like one day and then restrict yourself to 600 calories the next day, I prefer a balanced diet every day but my BMI is around 21 so I don't have an issue with my weight.

  • The main point of this programme regarding work I would like to see in coeliacs is the fact that by cutting back - fasting even for a short amount of time - say one day per month, puts the body into repair mode. It is the only time the body begins to repair its own cells instead of replacing them with new ones. It is the only time that they have found the brain is able to grow new brain cells. The thought that someone with internal damage of any kind from bones to organs could be in a position to at least partially repair themselves is worth investigation.

    The fact that fasting leads to repairing of of cells would be a fascinating study to be done on coeliacs - this could be something that would help all of us and perhaps repair things like Osteopenia, etc.

    Lovely dream - me thinks!!

  • I thought that was very interesting how our body repairs itself during fasting and apparently we can fast for as little as 16 hours including over night and 14 hours for the ladies:

    I'm going to give it a pop.

  • good luck!! i would b keeling over..(i get low blood sugar levels) but if it makes you feel better then good luck...

  • I am too!!!! Such a lot of repairing to do - and this appears to be the only way all of us Humpty Dumpty's can have a bash at mending ourselves! Lol!

  • Hi all, i don't have celiac disease (or so the doc sayes) but i do have a lot of food reactions, range-ing from constant ear infections, sore stomach, aches all over, patchy skin, itchy skin, dizziness... &the list goes on, im very sensitive to caffeine ,only have 1 cup of normal tea & 1 cup of de-caf the rest of the day i drink peppermint tea or vimto cordial.... talking about absorbing nutrients, has anyone ever thought about digestive enzymes to help with digesting our food better... i don't know a lot, just devling in2 it myself.....there's an enzyme that helps with histamine reactions....anyway i thought i would give it a go so i bought some with probiotics in them... & my stomach has never been so quiet still got the aches & pains but it's still early days!!! just a thought anyway, it might not help all, but if it helps a bit then it's worth saying...... One last thing, has anyone ever got tooth ache from eating chocolate???

  • Hi Shirl, As you may have read with coeliac disease, the millions and millions of villi in the small intestine all wither and shrink and become redundant in their main function of sucking up all of the nutrient from our food. This lack of complete nourishment often over many years sometimes over a lifetime causes complications in the form of other health problems and diseases.

    The first and prime main aim for any of us is to heal the full length of our gut and replace all of our villi into healthy verssions, as until this has been achieved we cannot hope to tackle other related problems.

    Much of what you have observed about enzymes may in some cases be useful at a later point in achievement of good health. Although, a word of warning - we all have to be extremely careful before pill popping as some are thought to have adverse reactions. I was looking into Pycnogenol - otherwise known as French Marine Pine Bark Extract. At the moment, although this looks promising for anyone who has histamine problems there are concerns that it may act detrimentally on people with autoimmune diseases and coeliac disease is an autoimmune disease. We do so have to be very careful that everything that is advised for our friends here on the forum will be safe.

    Probiotics are wonderful and also safe - but again it is advised that people try and get a full spectrum of them and not just the simple acidophilus and bifidus - these are often preferred in yoghurts as they are the milder tasting versions and people prefer their yoghurts to taste more like cream than the bitter and sourer versions.

    Regarding chocolate - firstly is it a gluten free version you are eating - it will say on the packet? Aldi do a good and wide range of gluten free ones. You may find that it could be your toothpaste that is causing sensitivity and creating aches in your teeth after chocolate - or if not a shortage of vitamin B1 as this is the vitamin found in many grains that contain gluten.

    I often take a vitamin B complex tablet a few times a week but this is my own personal choice.

    I hope that you continue feeling better. Good Luck and please keep us informed with your progress and do tell us if your toothache problem disappears! x

  • Thanks for all the info, iv had problems with my stomach for yrs ever since i had h pylori (about six yrs ago) also got thyroid problems... been on ranitadine 300mg for 3yrs now ... & not been able to eat anything other than plain foods, (no bread, eggs, anything with vinegar in it ect ect) but for two weeks out of every five i get food cravings ... choco, bread, bacon, & basically anything that's bad for me, so i make myself ill... had to try something... well anyway these tabs are working wonders, i had for the first time in yrs spaghetti bolognaise & no reactions with my stomach, ears, no dizziness.... i know what your saying about healing the stomach first, but you can get natural enzymes that are food that most of us eat everyday, &if you feel a bit better off em, then it's worth trying... oh & i take a good vitamin/mineral everyday & half a kelp tab (also sensitive to my thyroid meds) ... thanks for all the info again.. anyway hope you all feel better soon... xx

  • Hello Shirl, There are two things in the diet that are extremely addictive, create unbelievable cravings and withdrawal symptoms and harder to stop eating than anything else - those are sugar, in any form (especially fructose), and gluten. Sadly, they are scattered everywhere under different names and hidden in long lists of contents and just the smallest amount brings on cravings for food - all sorts of food. So these are best removed from any diet when tryig to get well again.

    I know what you mean about enzymes, besides being evident in raw foods there are other helpful ones in tablet/capsule forms. Some of these are a great aid such as bromelain - but every supplement taken often comes with the warning to check other medications that people are taking as well as the full list of conditions they are suffering. Bromelain, for instance helps to break down (digest) the proteins in our food and it is a wonderful anti-inflammatory aiding those in pain with sinusitis, rheumatoid arthritis, head pains, injury pains, etc naturally .... but it comes with a dangerous warning that it does thin the blood so other medical conditions and other pills and their side effects need to be checked before considering taking it.

    I mentioned Pycnogenol earlier as I thought it could offer a wonderful supplement as it is claimed to make the body product its own anti-histamines and be a useful supplement for a wealth of other complaints - but I have seen a few posts warning that shouldn't be considered for people with autoimmune diseases. Now as yet, I haven't found any medical site that gives any evidence of this but at the same time it does rather start ringing alarm bells as to its overall safety, just in case. I shall carry on looking and if I can find any evidence either way I will post it on GFG.

  • This site contains info on pycnogenol

    “Auto-immune diseases” such as multiple sclerosis (MS), lupus (systemic lupus erythematosus, SLE), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), or other conditions: Pycnogenol might cause the immune system to become more active, and this could increase the symptoms of auto-immune diseases. If you have one of these conditions, it’s best to avoid using pycnogenol"

  • So everyone with Coeliac Disease should give pycnogenol a wide birth!

    Thanks for finding this information for us all, Penel .. I was rather hoping it would cure my hayfever too!

    Never mind .... back to the drawing board!! :) x

  • good link! thanks...

  • hi again, i know about bromelain, it's got the same ingredients as my ranietadine so i don't take it... i get mine from Holland n Barrett... it's called digestpro... i'v been ill that long, all i do (up until recently) is sit on the internet & do research to try & make myself feel better... found something that works at the min, so i'll give this a bash.... thanks for the info though, if you find out anything else would greatly appreciate it...thanks again...

  • Does this one just contain enzymes Shirl? Last time I tried to find some, I couldn't get any without the tummy acid ingredient .. would love to find some with a mixture of enzymes on their own.

  • did you want the one without Betaine HCl, (which is hydrocloric acid) ... if so here's the link...

  • Thank you for this Shirl - I see they are Patrick Holfords .. I didn't realise that H&B sold his products.

    Many thanks for this. xx

  • your welcome... hope it helps.. if it does you good & you want to pass it on ,feel free... if i find anymore info i'll post em xx

  • Thank you - please pass on any information that you feel could help any of us - it is most welcome .. And thank you so much for posting the link to the product! xx

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