Lactose Free Information

lactose-free-protein-powdersLactose free information can help you diagnose your lactose intolerance problem.  This can then help you to treat yourself or at least give you something to discuss with your health care provider. Some of the symptoms of lactose intolerance include cramps, nausea, gas, bloating and diarrhea. Although these symptoms could indicate a digestive problem such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome, it could similarly indicate that you are lactose intolerant. You should always seek the advice of your health care provider since you might miss some of the associated symptoms. At least you will know where to start with a little bit of self-diagnosis. With self-diagnosis you need relevant and helpful lactose intolerance information. Once you know that you are lactose intolerant you will then need information as to how to live lactose-free.

 Lactose Free Living for Lactose Intolerance

Lactose free living will be much more comfortable for those people who are lactose intolerant.  Lactose intolerance means a person`s body is unable to digest lactose. Lactose is a sugar found in milk and in milk products. A deficiency of the lactase enzyme causes the condition. Lactase is the enzyme produced by the cells lining the small intestine. The job of the enzyme lactase is to break down the lactose sugar into more simple glucose and galactose. Glucose and galactose can then be absorbed into the bloodstream since they are now in the form of simple sugar.

The body starts producing less lactase after the age of two and this is when lactose intolerance often develops. However, only when they reach adolescence do lactose-intolerant people typically begin to develop symptoms. These symptoms can get progressively more pronounced until people are well into their adulthood. A gene inherited from the individuals’ parents could be the cause of lactose intolerance. Another reason could be that at some time there was an injury to the small intestines. An injury could have been from something like an illness such as Crohn’s disease, chemotherapy or celiac disease.

Lactose Free Living  After Diagnosis

Having a lactose free diet will help tremendously once there is a clear diagnosis of lactose intolerance. After about thirty minutes to two hours subsequent to swallowing milk or a milk product, people who are lactose intolerant generally feel quite uncomfortable. Symptoms can be mild or severe and are symptoms such as abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, diarrhea, or gas depending upon the amount of lactose swallowed and the amount that the individual can handle. Symptom severity differs between individuals.

 Easily Living Lactose Free

A few simple changes to the individual’s diet can help control the symptoms of lactose intolerance. These dietary changes can be as simple as reducing the amount of lactose ingested. Or the lactose free milk and lactose free icecreamadjustment can be more complex. The amount of the dietary changes depends on the individual’s ability to digest lactose. Rather than swallowing milk or milk products on their own, just by eating milk or milk products with meals many people are able to decrease their symptoms this way. You can experiment and while you may find that symptoms ease another person doing the same thing might be worse off. Milk products with lower lactose levels are products such as yogurt or hard cheese may be more suitable for some individuals rather than products with higher lactose content such as regular milk.

If dietary changes do not bring relief then the next step is to try over-the-counter drops or tablets of a lactase enzyme. The drops or tablets are taken while consuming milk or the products containing milk. If this does not help then an entire dietary change might be necessary to bring relief.

 Eliminating Dairy for Lactose Free Living

You would not want to completely eliminate milk and milk products if possible since these products are generally our main source of calcium and calcium is essential to our health. Bone growth and repair is only possible with calcium in the diet. You really do need calcium in your diet. Health problems like osteoporosis can develop later on in life as a result of a calcium shortage. So, talk to your doctor about your symptoms before you change your diet or before cut out milk or the products that contain milk. The answer and a diagnosis to your abdominal issues could be obtained from a few simple tests.

A word of caution: while self-diagnosis is a good place to start you should talk with your health care provider. The tools available to these providers make diagnose intolerance to lactose more efficient and accurate.  You should consult with your health care provider before embarking on a lactose free lifestyle.

More information is available from WebMD and from Wikipedia.