More people in the U.S. are on gluten-free diets even though the proportion of Americans with celiac disease held steady from 2009 to 2014, according to a new study.
Despite the fact that gluten-free diets are not known to provide any health benefits for the general population, some people believe they benefit from going gluten-free, said lead author Dr. Hyunseok Kim of Rutgers New Jersey Medical School in Newark.
“People may believe a gluten-free diet is healthier, and the diet is trendy,” Kim said.
To see whether the prevalence of celiac disease and the use of a gluten-free diets had increased over the past few years, Kim and his colleagues used data collected between 2009 and 2014 on 22,278 adults and children in the U.S. who were at least 6 years old and had been tested for celiac disease or interviewed about prior diagnoses.
About 0.7 percent of people were diagnosed with celiac disease, and about 1.08 percent were adhering to a gluten-free diet without being diagnosed with celiac disease.