Who Does Celiac Disease Affect?

Celiac disease, is an autoimmune disease, that affects a larger portion of the population than we realize. With a prevalence of at least 1%, this condition remains largely undiagnosed, leading to prolonged suffering for many individuals. There are aspects of celiac disease and its prevalence in genetic factors that make an impact across various demographics.

The Hidden Prevalence

Celiac disease is underestimated, with a staggering 83% of cases that remain undiagnosed. Therefore, a significant number of individuals are experiencing symptoms and complications associated with celiac without even realizing it. As a result, it is crucial to increase awareness and improve diagnostic methods to ensure timely intervention.

Genetic Factors

The genes HLA-DQ2 and HLA-DQ8 have been identified as associated with celiac disease. When a first-degree family member, such as a parent or sibling, has celiac disease, the probability of developing the condition increases significantly. Understanding the genetic factors involved aids in identifying individuals at higher risk, enabling earlier detection and intervention.

Age Knows No Bounds

Contrary to common belief, celiac disease develops at any age. It is not limited to adulthood and manifests in childhood as well. Individuals with undiagnosed celiac disease have had symptoms for years before receiving a proper diagnosis. Awareness of celiac disease at any age facilitates a more accurate and timely identification.

Diversity in Impact

Celiac disease affects individuals of all ethnicities. It is not restricted to a particular racial or ethnic group. The condition presents itself in people from different cultural backgrounds, emphasizing the importance of inclusivity in discussions and raising awareness about celiac disease. Recognizing its wide-ranging impact helps healthcare professionals and communities address the needs of diverse populations.


Celiac disease affects a significant portion of the population, yet remains largely undiagnosed. Understanding the facts about celiac disease is crucial in raising awareness and facilitating early diagnosis. By recognizing the genetic factors and the increased risk within families, we promote a more inclusive and informed approach to celiac disease. It is essential to advocate for increased education and research to ensure that those with celiac disease receive timely diagnosis and the necessary support to manage their new lifestyle effectively.

For more information on celiac disease, contact the Nationional Celiac Association.