The Swedish epidemic of coeliac disease explored using an epidemiological approach—some lessons to be learnt
Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 2005 Jun;19(3):425-40.
Sweden has experienced an epidemic of symptomatic coeliac disease that has no likeness anywhere else in the world. This is quite unique for a disease that is genetically dependent, immune-mediated and chronic, and suggests an abrupt increase and decrease, respectively, of one or a few causal factors influencing a large proportion of Swedish infants during the period in question.
We have shown that half of the epidemic was explained by an increase in the proportion of infants introduced to gluten in comparatively large amounts after breast-feeding had been ended. This was partly an effect of societal changes in national dietary recommendations and the food content of industrially produced infant foods.
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