By Alane Palmer, ND, CNC and Maria Cummings
Lactose Intolerance and Dairy intolerance are commonly confused by
most people. Individuals who are lactose intolerant have a difficult time digesting or not able to digest milk due to a low enzyme called lactase, therefore, it is a digestive system issue.
Lactase helps assist the digestive system in the breakdown of lactose which is the sugar found in milk and dairy. A person who is lactose intolerant may experience uncomfortable symptoms such as gas, diarrhea, cramps, nausea, and bloating. Although these symptoms are bothersome, they are not life threatening. Some people may have mild to serve symptoms depending on how much lactase they can produce which is why one person who is lactose intolerant may be able to eat a piece of cheese or dairy, whereas another person may not be able to tolerate any dairy.
Being allergic to milk is different from being lactose intolerant because it is not a digestive issue. A milk allergy is when the body thinks that the proteins from milk are harmful, so the immune system responds with mild to aggressive symptoms ranging from hives, rashes, and swelling to the severe symptoms like difficulty breathing, wheezing and even anaphylaxis which is life threatening.
Dairy intolerance can be either a Casein (milk protein) Allergy or a Lactose Intolerance. Chronic symptoms such as headaches, sinus pain, frequent cold or flu, skin problems, and irritable bowels could be indicators of a dairy intolerance. Not knowing whether or not you have this condition can worsen over time especially with age, causing serious long-term health problems like osteoporosis, anemia, and many others. The best way to know whether or not you have an intolerance to dairy or lactose is to test through a Food Allergy test kit that checks milk components. Our test looks at both the IgG which is the primary immune pathway for delayed food reactions or food intolerance and IgE which is the immune pathways for immediate food allergies. No need to wait for symptoms to worsen when you can find out today which foods you can tolerate!
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Medical disclaimer: Our Food Intolerance test kits and all tests cannot be used to diagnose, treat or cure any disease. All test results are to be used as educational materials and as a guide to help support your overall health and wellness. Always discuss health concerns with your medical doctor.