About us
Nutrition Services
Nutrition Supplements
Children’s Nutrition
Celiac Sprue
Food Allergies
Gluten-Free Foods
Gluten-Free Products
GI Physician Referrals
Patient Forms
News & Events


Faye Elahi, M.S., M.A.
Founder, Special Needs Nutritionist

What is the primary role of Vitamins/minerals?

 Vitamins from whole foods supply our body with the essential nutrients (cell food) that it needs to make energy, repair itself and grow as we sustain life. It is safe to say that in today’s hectic world, we would not be able to function at an optimal level without an adequate intake of natural vitamins.

Minerals are involved in almost every reaction of the metabolic pathways. They play a role in energy production, tissue manufacture, protein synthesis, cellular growth, reproduction, water balance, nervous and immune responses. It is easy to imagine what dramatic adverse side effects mineral deficiencies can cause. Most brands of gluten-free vitamin/minerals contain all micro and macro minerals in the needed amounts.

For a multiple Vitamin/Mineral supplement to be effective, it needs to have the following characteristics:

·        To be derived from “Whole Food Sources” that are “Biocompatible” meaning not from a synthetic source such as picolinate but rather from a natural food such as soy bean or rice grain or parsley etc...

·        To have a scientific research to back up its claims.This research should preferably be conducted by a third party entity other than the manufacturer.     

·        To be safe for daily use, for a year, ten years or fifty years

Nutrient and vitamin/mineral deficiencies in Celiacs

Celiac Disease, otherwise known as nontropical sprue, is an immune-mediated intolerance to the grain protein, gluten. Its symptoms are manifested when the small intestine attacks gluten, the protein found in wheat, barley, rye and perhaps oats. The more gluten one ingests, the more the small intestinal cells engage in attacking this foreign invader, and the more the intestinal lining is damaged  resulting in nutrient  malabsorption. As a result of severe malabsorption issues, Celiacs develop nutrient deficiencies that can lead to secondary conditions such as depression, chronic fatigue, anemia, infertility, neurological signs, dermatitis herpetiformis, and osteoporosis. Since Celiacs avoid gluten containing grains, and because they don’t eat a variety of the alternative grains, they often need to supplement daily with the following:

·        Vitamin B-complex to assist in proper functioning of the nervous  system

·        Vitamin D to increase the absorption of Calcium to prevent or reverse bone loss

·        Folate to combat fatigue, canker sores, gout, heart disease, menstruation problems, stress, anemia, stomach unrest, and ulcers

·        Iron to reverse or prevent anemia, menstrual problems, impaired absorption, excessive blood loss, or restless leg syndrome

·        Calcium and magnesium to slow down and reverse bone loss, and combat bone pain, finger/ foot/ leg cramps, insomnia, nervousness, and high cholesterol.

For an evaluation of your vitamin brand or a recommendation as to the most effective vitamin/mineral supplement for your specific condition, consult a specialized nutritionist.   

What should Celiacs avoid in a mutli-vitamin/mineral ?
Most vitamins brands contain fillers or additives that are not safe for Celiacs. For example, Silicone Dioxide or Sodium Bicarbonate are two safe, and “non-allergenic” fillers used in gluten-free vitamins. Celiacs with severe food sensitivities, have been known to react to the following “other ingredients” in vitamins: fiber cellulose, crystallin cellulose, soy flavoring (msg), lactose, casein, calcium caseinate, sodium caseinate, malt, malt flavoring, yeast, whey protein, egg, barley extract, powdered milk, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, natural flavorings, artificial flavorings, dextrin, dextrose, caramel color, to name a few.

Note: These ingredients may or may not contain gluten. Dextrin, for example, is generally corn-based, but it could come from other gluten-containing sources. Caramel color made in the US is gluten-free most of the times, such as the caramel used in Coca-Cola. To be sure, you may call the manufacturer or a research institution that specializes in Celiac disease. 

Why should vitamins/minerals be from a natural food source and not a synthetic?
Whole foods contain hundred if not thousands of yet to be discovered ingredients that cannot be isolated or they would no longer be Whole Foods ! Many of these nutrients are packed full of health benefits. With whole foods or food concentrates, the body takes what it needs and excretes what it does not. This is called selective absorption. When taking isolated or synthetic vitamins or minerals, there is no choice. So if your body is deficient in vitamin B, it will not be satisfied by you taking a synthetic form of B vitamin without the proper enzyme that helps absorb vitamin B. An average synthetic vitamin/ mineral pill is devoid of the living nutrients such as enzymes. In contrast a whole foods vitamin will give you live food sources of vitamins/ and minerals, as nature intended, with all the enzymes and synergistic compounds to absorb those essential vitamins with.

Natural Flu Virus Protection Plan:

Once again the flu season is upon us and as we all know by now, due to the contamination of the flu vaccine in England, a shortage of vaccine has resulted this year. This could be unfortunate for some high risk segments of the population i.e. the elderly whose immune system is already compromised. However some scientist like
Dr. Mercola ( a traditional Medicine Physician) believe that the thiomerisol (mercury) preservative in the flu vaccine can cause more damage than good in protecting us against any viral attack (To read Dr. Mercola's opinion on this topic, consult his website). So for the few million who will not get the flu vaccine this year, either by choice or by force, here is a natural, harmless, immune boosting program that has been scientifically proven to support
your immune system (to review this documentation, e-mail us directly at faye@specialneedsnutrition.com)

Here is the natural immune-boosting program:

1. Carotenoid Complex (a rich fruit and vegetable anti-oxidant that was used by the USDA as part of an experiment to prove efficacy of fruit & veggies on cancer prevention)

2. A  natural acerola cherry based Vitamin-C

3. A Zinc Chelate supplement

All these vitamins and minerals are available through Faye's clinic in Plano. For further information on exact dosages and timing please contact Faye at (214) 437-1297 or e-mail her directly.

All the best,

Faye Elahi, M.A., M.S.

< Send Page To a Friend >

Calcium Comparison Chart
Prepared by Faye Elahi, Nutritonist. Email her today for the most concentrated, high-quality supplements.

Calcium Source  mg CalciumAmount/serving
Os-Cal 500 +D     1000         2 tabs
Os-Cal Ultra     12002 tabs
Bluebonnet Liquid Cal-Mag     10002 tbsp (liquid)
Skim Milk     10003 Cups
Soy Milk     10003-1/2 Cups
Ca+Fortified Rice Milk     10004 Cups
Jarlsberg Cheese      10004 oz.
Cheddar Cheese     10004 oz.
Yogurt     10004 Cups
Cottage Cheese     10005 Cups
Tofu     10004 Cups
Spinach (cooked)     10008 Cups
Almonds     100012 oz.=1.5Cup=1200Calories
Broccoli (cooked)     100016 Cups
Pinto Beans (cooked)     100022 Cups =lots of gas!
Mustard Green     100016 Cups