I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease at age 10 in July 2019. My symptoms were weight loss, fatigue, and stomach pain. My mom always was worried about my growth. I was small and skinny. I thought it was normal to feel sick all the time. It got to the point were I didn't want to eat. In 2018, my best friend was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. Finally at the age of 9 they tested me. The test came back positive and I was devastated. I knew that what that meant. No gluten. I saw my best friend struggle with eating gluten free. I thought the world was going to end. But with the wonderful GI team and doctor at Children's Hospital, I soon learned it was going to be okay. Now I am 12 and I am living my best life.
Celiac disease is a serious genetic autoimmune disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with the absorption of nutrients from food. Celiac Disease symptoms include diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss, bloating, gas, abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting, constipation, and more. Over the years the number of people with Celiac Disease has increased. In 1990, the incidence of celiac disease was estimated to be 3-5 cases per 100,000 individuals worldwide. In 2000, the incidence of celiac disease was estimated to be 9 cases per 100,000 individuals worldwide.
A 100% gluten-free diet is the only existing treatment for Celiac Disease today. Some families cannot afford to have their child be on a gluten free diet because it is very expensive. That is the reason I am here. I am raising money for these kids who cannot afford the gluten free diet, so that they can be provided with bread, pasta and much more that they cannot afford.
I really hope, with your help, that I can help. Even if you can only donate $10, it will help a family in need as my team, the Wheatless Warriors, has a goal to raise money together with Children's Hospital of Colorado! Thank you for reading my story and learning more about Celiac Disease.