Lawmakers continue tradition and mark special day for those affected by celiac disease.
The U.S. Senate has passed a resolution designating Sept. 13, 2011 to be "National Celiac Disease Awareness Day." This action, which honors those affected by celiac disease, also commemorates the birth of Dr. Samuel Gee, a pioneer in celiac disease research.
The resolution touched upon several issues that warrant greater awareness of celiac disease, including:
"As recently as 2000, the average person with celiac disease waited 11 years for a correct diagnosis"
"Half of all people with celiac disease do not show symptoms of the disease"
"Delay in the diagnosis of celiac disease can result in damage to the small intestine, which leads to an increased risk for malnutrition, anemia, lymphoma, adenocarcinoma, osteoporosis, miscarriage, congenital malformation, short stature, and disorders of the skin and other organs"
"Celiac disease is linked to many autoimmune disorders, including thyroid disease, systemic lupus erythematosus, type 1 diabetes, liver disease, collagen vascular disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and Sjogren's syndrome"
In passing the resolution, the Senate declared that "all people of the United States should become more informed and aware of celiac disease" and called for ceremonies and activities to recognize the day.
How to Celebrate
For a list of ways you can commemorate this special day, see "13 Ways to Celebrate Celiac Awareness Day" from NFCA's September e-newsletter.
To learn more about this resolution, see the Congressional Record.