Lactose Intolorance, Milk Allergies, IBS and Food Colors


Milk in our daily diet.

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Milk is important in the diet. How can I replace its nutrients for a healthy life?



Milk and other dairy products are a major source of nutrients in the human diet. The most important of these nutrients is calcium. Calcium is essential for the growth and repair of bones throughout life. In the middle and later years, a shortage of calcium may lead to thin, fragile bones that break easily (a condition called osteoporosis). A concern, then, for both children and adults with lactose intolerance, is getting enough calcium in a diet that includes little or no milk. In planning meals, making sure that each day's diet includes enough calcium is important, even if the diet does not contain dairy products. Many nondairy foods are high in calcium. Green vegetables, such as broccoli and kale, and fish with soft, edible bones, such as salmon and sardines, are excellent sources of calcium. To help in planning a high-calcium and low-lactose diet, the table below lists some common foods that are good sources of dietary calcium and shows about how much lactose the foods contain.

Fig 1. List of calcium and lactose content in food.


Recent research shows that yogurt with active cultures may be a good source of calcium for many people with lactose intolerance, even though it is fairly high in lactose. Evidence shows that the bacterial cultures used in making yogurt produce some of the lactase enzyme required for proper digestion. Clearly, many foods can provide the calcium and other nutrients the body needs, even when intake of milk and dairy products is limited. However, factors other than calcium and lactose content should be kept in mind when planning a diet. Some vegetables that are high in calcium (Swiss chard, spinach, and rhubarb, for instance) are not listed in the table above because the body cannot use their calcium content. They contain substances called oxalates, which stop calcium absorption. Calcium is absorbed and used only when there is enough vitamin D in the body. A balanced diet should provide an adequate supply of vitamin D. Sources of vitamin D include eggs and liver. However, sunlight helps the body naturally absorb or synthesize vitamin D, and with enough exposure to the sun, food sources may not be necessary. Some people with lactose intolerance may think they are not getting enough calcium and vitamin D in their diet. Consultation with a doctor or dietitian may be helpful in deciding whether any dietary supplements are needed. Taking vitamins or minerals of the wrong kind or in the wrong amounts can be harmful. A dietitian can help in planning meals that will provide the most nutrients with the least chance of causing discomfort. |top|

What can I use instead of milk for cooking etc?

There are a number of other milks that are available that may be substituted for cow's milk when baking or cooking. The type of substitute used will depend on the type of food it is used for. Rice milk is good for drinking and putting on cereal. It can also be used when baking or as a thickening agent. In some recipes water, broth, or juice can be substituted for the cow's milk. Sometimes, a milk allergic person can use goat's milk or soy milk. Both of these milks, however, are also very allergenic. In fact, most people allergic to cow's milk are also allergic to goat's milk. Persons with lactose intolerance should never use goat’s milk. See medical reports’ abstracts. |top|Milk allergy is caused when the immunity system reacts against the proteins found in milk. This happens due to the lack of the immune system to learn to recognize milk proteins as being harmless. When unwanted bodies (proteins) enter our system the immune system is altered and reacts against the protein to destroy it and protect our body. For instance, if bacteria enters our body through the skin, the proteins that make up the bacteria (which are different than ours) act as a trigger to the immune system to get rid of it. Once this trigger is reached by the immune system a chain of reactions happen in order to expel and reject these unwanted proteins (bacteria). Therefore the first cells that react are those beneath the the skin to avoid the bacteria to travel further while other parts of the immune system stay on the alert. When milk is ingested (into someone who is allergic to milk) the proteins present come in touch with the immune system but unfortunately the immune system fails to recognize them and believes they are unwanted and harmful proteins. Hence, the reactions start.




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Did you know?

More non Caucasians are lactose intolerant then not. Only about 10% Caucasians are affected.

Around 95% of Asians have LI while 75% Blacks and 50% Mediterranean.



Not True!!!

Contrary to what some people suggest, do not take Goats' milk instead of Cow's milk if you are LI.

All milk derived from mammalian animals contain lactose.