Diseases and Conditions

Treating Lactose Intolerance


Lactose intolerance is the inability to break down a kind of natural sugar called lactose. Lactose is often found in dairy products, like milk and yogurt. A person becomes lactose intolerant when her or his small bowel stops getting enough of the enzyme lactase to digest and break down the lactose. Lactose intolerance is rather common in adults, especially those with Asian, African, Native American, or Mediterranean roots. According to Mayo Clinic, almost 30 million American individuals on the age of 20 are lactose intolerant. Lactose intolerance generally causes gastrointestinal symptoms, like gas, bloating, and diarrhea, about half a hour to 2 hours after ingesting dairy or other dairy products including lactose.

Lactose intolerance is more common in individuals with Asian, African, Native American, or Mediterranean roots. Intestinal disorders like coeliac disease and inflammatory bowel disease or an operation or harm to your small intestine could also cause lactose intolerance. In rather rare cases, lactose intolerance is inherited. This can be referred to as congenital lactose intolerance. They might have diarrhea as shortly as human milk or a formulation containing lactose is launched. Sometimes, a form of lactose intolerance known as developmental lactose intolerance happens when an infant is born prematurely. The severity depends upon how much lactose was have and just how much lactase the person has really made.

If you are experiencing cramps, bloating, and diarrhoea after consuming milk or eating and drinking dairy food, your physician might prefer to test you for lactose intolerance. This blood test steps the body’s response to a fluid which has high lactose levels. In case your body is not able to digest the lactose, the microorganisms in your bowel may break it down rather. The process whereby bacteria break down sugars like lactose is known as fermentation. If you are not fully digesting lactose, the hydrogen breath examine may show a greater than regular quantity of hydrogen in your breath. Lactic acid collects when bacteria in the bowel ferment the undigested lactose.

There is currently no way to make the body produce more lactose. Treatment for lactose intolerance requires reduction or completely removing dairy food from the diet. Many people who are lactose intolerant can still have up to 1/2 cup of milk without experiencing any symptoms. Not all milk products contain a lot of lactose. Low fat or nonfat dairy food routinely have less lactose as well.