The Experience of Living With a Gluten-Free Diet: An Integrative Review : Gastroenterology Nursing

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The Experience of Living With a Gluten-Free Diet

An Integrative Review

Rodríguez Almagro, Julián PhD; Rodríguez Almagro, David MSc; Solano Ruiz, Carmen; Siles González, José PhD; Hernández Martínez, Antonio PhD

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Gastroenterology Nursing 41(3):p 189-200, May/June 2018. | DOI: 10.1097/SGA.0000000000000328


Celiac disease represents a problem in our society, not only because of its interest in terms of healthcare, but also because of its increasing prevalence in recent years and the impact it has on sufferers and their families. This integrative review investigated current knowledge about the experience of living with a gluten-free diet, as well as social support and the role played by nurses and/or associations in the process. A total of 18 articles were selected. Results revealed greater family support is needed to deal with the day-to-day issues of a gluten-free diet. Furthermore, women diagnosed with celiac disease have more psychological distress than men according to some studies. Sufferers of celiac disease report that more information is needed at all levels (hotel and catering, healthcare, social), which would help generate coping strategies. The few studies retrieved that talk about this topic show that following a gluten-free diet affects the personal, family, emotional, social, and financial dimensions of sufferers of celiac disease. The nurse tends to be the person whom those coping with the illness go to for support, although celiac disease associations are also a fundamental pillar in this support. Policy makers need to adapt health services to the needs of individuals with celiac disease.

© 2018 Society of Gastroenterology Nurses and Associates.

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