So am I, and have been for the past 17 years. Like a lot of people, I wasn’t born with the condition, but it was discovered when I was 19, and I had to learn how to cope with it. The purpose of this website is to help others find important information, tips, and helpful products that help living with lactose intolerance.
What is Lactose Intolerance?
Lactose is a natural sugar found in milk and other dairy products. Lactose intolerant people can’t digest lactose, because their body is missing the Lactase enzyme, which is used to break down and digest lactose.
Lactose intolerance is usually more common in adults and teens, but can occur for babies and children as well. Some lactose intolerance people can’t digest any milk products, while some can eat small amounts without major issues – the condition changes from person to person. For more medical information about lactose intolerance, check out WebMD.
What are the Symptoms for Lactose Intolerance?
The symptoms can occur after drinking milk or eating dairy products, and can include:
- Bloating in the stomach
- Stomach pain and cramps
Is Lactose Intolerance dangerous?
In itself, lactose intolerance isn’t directly dangerous. However, some of the side effects (such as diarrhea and vomiting) can cause dehydration and other medical concerns.
In addition, maintaining a dairy-free diet can cause calcium deficiency which can lead to osteoporosis (fragile bones). Therefore, it’s important to either use products that enable you to keep drinking milk, or find other ways to get calcium, such as calcium-rich (non-dairy) foods or calcium supplement pills.
Testing for Lactose Intolerance
If your doctor suspects you have lactose intolerance, he will most likely refer you to a Hydrogen Breath Test. During that test, you will be asked to breath into a special container. Then you will drink a liquid containing lactose, and breath into a container again, at several set time periods.
If your body can’t break down lactose, breath hydrogen levels increase above the normal levels of people without lactose issues.
Lactose intolerance can also be tested with a blood test, though that method is less common.
Is There a Treatment for Lactose Intolerance?
At this time there is no known cure for the condition. However, there are several over the counter pills and other aids, that contain the Lactase enzyme, such as the Digestive Advantage Lactose Defense tablets. Using these treatments most people can continue to eat and drink dairy products.