Treatments and Cures

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What treatments or cures are there for lactose intolerance and milk allergies?

First of all it is very important to confirm if you suffer from lactose intolerance or a milk allergy. They are two different causes and require different attention.

For lactose intolerance one needs to avoid the intake of food products containing lactose. On the other hand milk allergy is an immunity problem - where the immune system recognizes the milk protein as a harmful agent and hence attacks it.

Read Symptoms if you are not sure what you have. Some people might suffer from both or even more food allergies including milk.


How is lactose intolerance treated?

Prevention is better than cure is what the wise say, and in this case this proves to be very right because there is no cure for lactose intolerance for the moment.

However, luckily lactose intolerance is relatively easy to treat. Symptoms can be controlled through diet as at the moment there is no existing treatment to improve the body's ability to produce lactase. Young children with lactase deficiency should not consume any foods containing lactose (for a list of foods containing hidden lactose click here). In general older children and adults need not avoid lactose completely, but individuals can handle different amounts of lactose . For instance, John may suffer symptoms after drinking a small glass of milk, while Rose can drink one glass but not two. Some persons may be able to tolerate certain products containing lactose but not others. This is a learning process for each individual and it is only by trial and error to find out what and how much exactly one is able to handle products containing lactose.

One can buy products that do not contain lactose. Supermarkets sell many products that can improve one's life without the risk of consuming lactose. One can find many non-dairy products including butter, yoghourt, ‘cream', and of coarse Soya milk. This milk contains all of the nutrients including calcium, found in regular milk. One can buy unsweetened Soya-milk or sweetened, usually with fructose. Please make sure that when you are shopping for non lactose food products you do not forget to look for the other ingredients that contain hidden lactose as otherwise you might get symptoms anyway. Make sure you have a copy of the list for the hidden products.


 How is milk allergy treated?

Unfortunately there is no cure for allergies. This leaves us with the second option i.e. control. Allergies can be controlled if we take the right medication and avoid the substances that cause our immunity to react against - being milk proteins, dust-mite, latex or what ever..

Allergies can appear at any time of the life. A baby can be born with an allergy or an adult can develop an allergy without an explanation. This is quite true in some pregnant woman who during pregnancy they develop an allergy against some food, such as seafood. This is probably caused by the high immunoglobulin levels in the blood (immunoglobulins are the proteins that act against the intruders such as bacteria).

Although both are difficult to cure the allergy, in many cases the person can outgrow the allergy and starts to disappear. This happens when the body start to learn that what is causing the allergy, i.e. the allergen, is harmless. In some cases immunologists suggest that the person should start to introduce minute amounts of the allergen (for instance milk, in this case to allow the body to learn to accept it before creating strong reactions.

As in all cases of allergies, the most effective treatment is avoidance of the allergen, which in this case is found in milk. One should watch the recipes of dishes consumed in restaurants or at parties (click here for a list of hidden milk products). Another important issue is the added E-Numbers (E-colours) in food. Some of them act as allergens to some people, see a list of them and watch those which may contain milk products.

Antihistamine drugs are very effective in calming down the reactions caused by the allergy, such as itching. Antihistamine is a sedative drug therefore it sends the user in deep sleep. This is to the advantage of the sufferer as it stops the person from itching in cases of skin eczema. Other drugs, such as sodium cromoglycate and corticosteroid drugs can be take regularly to prevent symptoms from developing. Creams containing corticosteroids are useful for eczema but prolonged use of them may damage the skin.


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Any treatment?

There is no treatment at the moment for lactose intolerant. But in the future persons affected severely may benefit from gene therapy.

This is when a gene that produces lactase is inserted in the genetic coding hoping that it functions.



Same old story!
In the 70's gene therapy was the medicine of the future.
In the 80's it was the same. In the 90's it was still
the medicine of the future.

New millennium - gene therapy is hoped to be the medicine of the century!!! When? Do not try to guess but some experiments recently have been successful.

Click Here!