Infertility is a difficult diagnosis that has multiple causes. Approximately one in five couples experienced this condition with no explanation.
However, an increasing number of scientific studies indicate that celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder, is the underlying cause of some unexplained infertility cases. This article examines the science connecting both conditions.
What Does The Research Say?
Celiac disease is a genetic, autoimmune condition. Its symptoms are triggered by ingesting gluten, a protein in rye, wheat, and barley. Eaten gluten triggers an immune response in individuals with this condition, which can damage the small intestine and inflammation.
Additionally, these symptoms can also have an impact on reproductive abilities. The exact mechanism between celiac and infertility is unclear, but research shows reproductive changes can be caused by untreated celiac disease in people with vaginas, penises, and pregnant people. That said, other studies suggest that the evidence may not be strong.
Female reproductive changes include:
● Inability to conceive
● Early menopause
● Premature birth
● Recurrent miscarriage
Male reproductive changes include:
● Reduces sexual activity or drive
● Abnormal sperm morphology, or sperm shape and size
Why Might This Be The Case?
Multiple studies have discovered a connection between celiac disease and unexplained infertility and pregnancy loss. According to Felice Ramallo, lead dietitian for Allara Health, system-wide inflammation or problems with nutrient absorption could be to blame. She said those with celiac disease who don’t avoid gluten could suffer decreased fertility.
Does It Make A Difference If You Are Diagnosed?
The only treatment for celiac disease is eating a gluten-free diet. By removing gluten, you can reduce the inflammation your immune system produces in response to it. Eliminating gluten will also limit the potential for ongoing damage in your small intestine, which could lead to malabsorption of nutrients.
Can a Gluten Intolerance Cause Fertility Issues?
Gluten intolerance or sensitivity can cause similar symptoms to celiac disease. That said, gluten intolerance is not an autoimmune condition. This means it may not affect infertility in the same way.
There is also no evidence that gluten intolerance affects fertility. However, if you are sensitive to gluten, you should avoid it for your overall health and comfort.
Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition that could affect fertility and pregnancy outcomes. The only effective treatment is going gluten-free. This can restore fertility and reduce the miscarriage rate discovered in the general population.