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Lactic intolerance: Causes, symptoms, and lactose-free meals – Closer

Lactose intolerance impacts everybody in different ways. If you experience discomfort, such as bloating or discomfort, after eating, you may benefit from getting rid of certain foods from your diet.

Is usually caused by a lactase deficiency. Lactase is an enzyme manufactured in the small intestine which helps to process lactose.

If your body does not produce enough lactase, drink and food containing lactose will pass through the digestive system into the colon.

Lactose can trigger responses in certain people

Once within the colon, the lactose is separated by bacteria which produces vapors and fatty acids – and it’s these that trigger the symptoms of lactose intolerance.

You can find different types of lactase deficiency:

Primary lactase deficiency

This is the most common cause worldwide, and will usually occur after the associated with two when you become less dependent on milk and other dairy products. Major latase deficiency is genetic.

Secondary lactase deficiency

Secondary can occur at any time, and is often triggered by surgery or certain medication.

It is the most common cause of lactose intolerance in the UK, and may be a result of other conditions.

These include:

  • gastroenteritis
  • Coeliac disease
  • Crohn’s disease
  • ulcerative colitis
  • chemotherapy
  • Certain antibiotics

Lactose intolerance symptoms

These types of will usually occur a few hours after consuming food or drink which consists of lactose, such as milk or dairy products.

Symptoms will often occur after consuming dairy

Symptoms will differ in intensity depending on how much lactose you eat, and also from person to person.

They can include:

  • Wind
  • puffed up stomach
  • stomach cramping
  • stomach rumbling
  • diarrhoea
  • nausea or vomiting

If you suffer from any of these after consuming dairy products it is important to book an appointment with your DOCTOR to confirm what you are suffering from, and to rule out other conditions including irritable intestinal syndrome.

Lactose intolerant diet

After being diagnosed with lactose intolerance you should initially leave out all food and drink containing lactose out of your diet.

Broccoli is rich in calcium but dairy products free

If your symptoms ease up, then you may be able to reintroduce small amounts of lactose – however many people find they can’t even have whole milk with their tea and coffee without having triggering a reaction.

It’s important you find other sources of vitamins found in dairy products, including calcium plus vitamin D.

These food types are calcium rich but dairy-free:

  • almonds
  • canned tuna
  • canned salmon or sardines (with bones)
  • uncooked broccoli
  • spinach
  • dark green leafy vegetables

Dairy-free causes of vitamin D:

  • Fatty fish (salmon, trout, tuna)
  • Fortified cereal
  • Mushrooms
  • Tofu
  • Fortified orange fruit juice

Lactose-free dairy products alternatives

There are a whole range of lactose-free products available, which includes milk and cheese, from manufacturers such as Lactofree and Alpro.

More information about lactic intolerance can be found on the NHS website.

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