The one thing that will massively increase your child's chance of being coeliac
Coeliac disease impacts on around one in every 100 people in this country.
So it's widespread enough... without being a common affliction per say.
It is an auto-immune disease that prevents you from digesting gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. The disease can manifest itself at any stage in a person’s lifetime, with symptoms including abdominal pain, recurring mouth-ulcers, weight-loss, vomiting and diarrhoea.
It is estimated to affect 47,500 people in Ireland.
Last May the Coeliac Society Of Ireland said that having a first-degree relative with the disease means the likelihood of being affected shoots up to one-in-ten.
In short, if you or your partner is coeliac - your kids have a 10 percent chance of also having it.
Mary Twohig, chairperson of Coeliac Society Of Ireland, said: "It’s not a fad or a lifestyle choice, it is a serious, lifelong condition. If undiagnosed, people with coeliac disease could develop osteoporosis, anaemia, nerve damage and it can have negative impacts on fertility.
"If people are suffering with symptoms we want them to be aware that if a first-degree relative has coeliac disease, their own chances of having the disease are increased to one in ten. It’s also important to note that some people with the disease experience no symptoms but internal damage is still taking place.
"We advise anyone with a first blood relative diagnosed as coeliac to discuss testing with their GP."
Fine Gael Catherine Byrne TD added: "With approximately 47,500 people in Ireland affected by coeliac disease, it’s hugely important that the medical risks of the disease are highlighted."
Ms Twohig continued: "A diagnosis of coeliac disease can be a difficult adjustment but with some planning and family support it’s possible to live a full and healthy life."