Lactose is a sugar found in milk and milk products. An enzyme called lactase is needed for your body to break down/ digest lactose. Lactose intolerance happens when your body does not have enough lactase.
Symptoms of lactose intolerance: bloating, gas, cramping, nausea, diarrhea, etc.
There is no treatment for lactose intolerance but symptoms can be managed through diet changes:
- Get enough calcium and vitamin D each day if you are lactose intolerant. Many foods that do not contain lactose are also sources of calcium - fish with soft bones, such as canned salmon or sardines, broccoli and leafy green vegetables, oranges, tofu, products with labels that show they have added calcium, such as some cereals, fruit juices, and soy milk, etc.
- Vitamin D helps your body absorb and use calcium. Vitamin D food sources: eggs, fatty fish, etc. Some ready-to-eat cereals and orange juice have added vitamin D also exposed your skin to sun for Vitamin D, daily for 10-15 mins at least.
- Go for Yogurt with live and active cultures is low in lactose. The bacterial cultures in yogurt pre-digest lactose, making it a suitable food for many people with lactose intolerance. Many people with lactose intolerance tolerate cultured yogurt well.
- Check the label of ingredients before buying any product as lactose is often added to few canned, frozen, and prepared foods such as bread, cereals, cakes, etc.