Because celiac disease attacks the lining of the small intestine, disrupting the absorption of nutrients, untreated it can lead to malnutrition, weight gain or weight loss, and an increased risk of arthritis, osteoporosis, muscle weakening, and nerve damage. Physical fitness plays an important role in increasing the body's strength and overall health, assisting in the maintenance of bone mass, muscle tone, flexibility, and body function.

Celiacs who adhere to a daily routine that includes exercise and physical activity report less fatigue and increased energy levels. Begin by discussing your fitness goals with your health care provider. All celiac patients, especially those with brittle bones or weakened muscles resulting from malnutrition, should obtain specific exercise guidelines from their physicians before embarking on any exercise routine.