What is Lactose Intolerance?
Lactose is the sugar found in milk and milk products. Lactose Intolerance is the inability to digest milk or milk products. It is a common digestive problem in which people develop symptoms like diarrhea, nausea, bloating, abdominal pain etc. after consuming dairy products.
Who is at risk of suffering from lactose intolerance?
Lactose Intolerance is a common condition that is seen in most of the people.
- Both males and females are affected by Lactose Intolerance.
- Age – People have the chance of developing Lactose intolerance when they grow older.
- People of certain ethnicity – African, Americans, American Indians and Asian Americans have higher chances of developing lactose Intolerance.
- Premature birth – Babies born prematurely have risk of lactose intolerance.
- Persons having certain disease or health conditions affecting digestive system can develop lactose intolerance.
- Genetic – People with a family history of lactose intolerance are likely to develop it.
What are the causes of lactose intolerance?
Lactose intolerance is caused by a deficiency of the enzyme lactase that break down lactose into galactose and glucose which is easily absorbed by the body.
What are the prevention and treatment options?
- Avoid food that causes lactose intolerance.
- Use lactose-free milk or milk products.
- Have lactase enzyme.
When is lactose intolerance a serious problem?
If you are lactose intolerant it may be difficult for you to maintain enough vitamins and nutrient supply needed by you body. Lactose intolerance can cause osteoporosis, a condition that decreases bone density and strength.
What are the symptoms of lactose intolerance?
Symptoms can range from mild to severe. Common symptoms of lactose intolerance include:
The symptoms occur within few hours of consuming milk or milk products.
How to diagnose lactose intolerance?
You need to consult your doctor and tell him about the symptoms you face when every time you have dairy products. Your doctor might advise you to undergo a stool test to diagnose if you are the case of lactose intolerance. The other tests that your doctor might want you to undergo are Hydrogen Breath Test, Lactose Tolerance Test.