What is Lactose intolerance ?
Lactose is Milk sugar, or to use the correct terminology, Lactose is a disaccharide sugar found in milk, which is made up from galactose and glucose.
Lactose intolerance is very common, because human beings stop producing Lactase after being weaned or by the age of 5. Lactase is the enzyme helping you digest lactose in the small intestine, where it will break lactose into it's 2 components, galactose and glucose. Most adults can still tolerate small amounts of milk per day without severe symptoms.
It is important not to confuse a lactose intolerance with a milk allergy, which is much more problematic and serious.
One could suggest, that the natural treatment is simply to abstain from milk products. Which is true in part, the other part is the unfortunate practice of food manufacturers to use lactose in all kind of processed foods. Therefore, treatment is directed to be able to digest small amounts without reacting with the typical symptoms of bloating and diarrhoea.
Another unfortunate part is, that the pharmaceutical industry likes to use lactose to add to their pills as a carrier substance, or as filler, simply because it is very cheap.
People, who are very sensitive to lactose would react even to the small amounts used in those pills.
Some people may be more sensitive than others, the main reasons being; genetic heritage, lactose intolerance is more common in patients of African, American Indian, Aboriginal and Asian ancestry. The use of certain drugs, like Antibiotic or Corticosteroids can increase the problem, and so will Intestinal infections and general food allergies.
The typical symptoms of a Lactose Intolerance are: Gas and bloating - abdominal discomfort and
cramps - Nausea and finally the worst, diarrhoea.
To start the treatment, it is important to stop all milk products and foods produced containing lactose. Possible treatment may consist of a digestive tract detox and re-introducing friendly bacteria, optimising gut flora. Friendly Lactobacilli secrete the lactase enzyme and can therefore help sensitive people tolerate small mount of lactose.
Desensitising drops will further enhance the therapy.
After treatment, most patient can digest small amount of milk and low lactose dairy products such as, yogurt, hard cheese, butter and even a scoop of ice cream. Having mentioned that, make sure you are aware of your combined daily consumption. An intolerance always works on accumulated substance, therefore select one item per day, not all those listed in one go :-)
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*Medical Disclaimer: All information given is of a general nature and not to be taken as medical health advice.