Do you suffer from nausea after drinking a glass of milk? Do you suffer from a feeling of fullness after breakfast? Well, if you can relate to the above situations, you probably are suffering from lactose intolerance.
Nutritionists all over the world recommend a glass of milk every day for all age groups. But what if you are unable to digest milk or any of its products? What if you are unable to enjoy the benefits of milk? Well, fret not. This post talks about the natural remedies for lactose intolerance.
Would you like to know more? Keep reading.
What Is Lactose Intolerance?
The small intestine produces the lactase enzyme. It helps in breaking down lactose so that you can digest any dairy product or milk that you consume. The blood absorbs the two types of sugar, namely glucose and galactose, which are the end products after the lactose break down by lactase.
People who suffer from lactose intolerance cannot produce enough lactase in their body. They can’t break down lactose, and neither can their blood absorb its subcomponents. The lactose they consume moves into their colon or large intestine. The inability to digest milk or lactose intolerance can trigger a few health conditions.
Types Of Lactose Intolerance:
Here’s some handy information about the four types of lactose intolerance:
1. Primary Lactase Deficiency:
It is a genetic condition that is quite common. It affects children and people who are below the age of 20. When the diet of a person includes less milk, it triggers a vicious cycle in the body. It automatically reduces the level of lactase production in the body and increases the risk of an allergic reaction with the consumption of milk.
2. Secondary Lactase Deficiency:
It is a problem that usually occurs in your small intestine. Again, the production of lactase is very little. Intestinal surgery may be one of the possible causes. Other reasons could be chemotherapy, Crohn’s disease, and gastroenteritis.
3. Congenital Lactase Deficiency:
It is a genetic condition due to which a person may not naturally produce any lactase at all.
4. Familial Lactase Deficiency:
Despite the lactase production in the body, some people may not be able to break down lactose and digest it.
Symptoms Of Lactose Intolerance:
Typically, when a person experiences lactose intolerance, they display a few major symptoms. Some of them are:
- Bloating sensation
- Stomach ache or a rumbling stomach
- Dehydration (just in case the symptom is extreme)
- Diarrhea may strike within two hours of consumption of dairy products
- Flatulence or building up of gas in the intestines leads to burping or farting
Now that you know about the causes and symptoms of lactose intolerance, here’s a handy list of must-haves that will help you enjoy that glass of goodness and dairy products better.
Maintaining good nutrition is very important in order to lower the symptoms of lactose intolerance. Here are some substantial food items you must incorporate into your diet. They contain calcium that often lacks among lactose intolerant patients.
Belonging to the family of cabbages, broccoli has been recognized as the nutritional powerhouse. It flourishes mostly during the winter months and contains phytonutrients that protect you from life threatening diseases. For consumption, broccoli can be added to a salad or stir fried with other veggies.
Interesting fact: Broccoli boosts immunity. It contains Vitamin C which eliminates free radicals and lowers the symptoms of common cold (1).
Known as one of the most nutritious flowering plants all over the world, spinach happens to be more than a healthful choice. It is indeed the secret to a fit lifestyle. Spinach contains vitamins and minerals in abundance that fortify your physique with ample nourishment. For consumption, they can be added to salads, soups and wraps.
Interesting fact: Spinach is great for weight loss diets. It contains a plethora of nutrients such as iron, calcium, lutein and fibre (2).
The well-known orange is a citrus fruit that grows in the first two months of the year. It is quite similar to lemon and tangerine, although the benefits imparted come in plenty. Orange contains Vitamin C that is an excellent choice for all who are lactose intolerant.
Interesting fact: Oranges contain fibre that helps you prevent colon cancer. It is also an excellent digestive aid that prevents constipation and irritable bowel syndrome, something that is very common among lactose intolerant patients.
Sardines are a wonderful source of calcium, something that often lacks in the diet of a lactose intolerant person. Since you can’t drink milk, you can make up for it through sardines. Other sources of calcium are nuts, beans, green vegetables, tofu and dried apricots.
5. Chocolate Milk:
One of the best home remedies for lactose intolerance is intake of chocolate milk. It is always a better idea to drink chocolate milk instead of plain milk. The calcium found in chocolate milk can be absorbed better than regular milk. You will also be able to tolerate the flavour.
Interesting fact: Chocolate milk happens to be a great post workout drink for all health conscious folks. It contains protein, calcium and carbohydrates, which improve your overall health (4).
Most researchers have stated that yogurt is the best source of calcium for lactose intolerance patients. According to a study conducted, the bacteria found in yogurt produce a lactase enzyme that is needed for proper digestion.
Interesting fact: Yogurt is also a natural remedy for irritable bowel syndrome, constipation and diarrhea (5).
7. Apple Cider Vinegar:
Apple cider vinegar can also be trusted for treating lactose intolerant patients. It neutralizes stomach acid and reduces the harmful symptoms. Mix one spoon of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water. Drink it once a day.
Interesting fact: Apple cider vinegar is effective among diabetic patients. According to a study published in the year 2007, people suffering from type 2 diabetes were given two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. A significant drop was observed in the blood sugar levels (6).
[ Read: Benefits Of Apple Cider Vinegar ]
Saffron is a popular herb that is used for a large number of medicinal purposes today. It boosts digestive health and prevents the formation of gas.
Interesting fact: Saffron boosts appetite, acts as an aphrodisiac and purifies the blood (7).
Ginger is used ideally for treating stomach aches and digestive problems. It encourages the production of digestive juices and relieves you from cramps.
Interesting fact: Ginger is best known for strengthening your immune system. It warms you on a cold day by encouraging sweat.
Peppermint is as good as ginger. It fights digestive disorders like a pro. The best way to consume peppermint is in the form of tea. Herbal teas are ideal for lactose intolerant patients.
Interesting fact: Peppermint acts as an anti-cancer agent. It prevents the growth of tumours and protects you from colon, skin and lung cancer.
Chamomile, mostly taken in the form of tea, is the perfect herbal remedy for all lactose intolerant patients. It relieves from bloating, flatulence and regulates digestive health.
Interesting fact: Chamomile reduces stress, headaches, colds, bronchitis, pains and bladder troubles (8).
12. St Mary’s Thistle:
St Mary’s Thistle, popularly known as Blessed Thistle, detoxifies your system, boosts liver function and cures lactose intolerance effectively.
Interesting fact: St Mary’s Thistle is also ideal for all pumping mommies. It promotes breast milk and benefits the liver (9).
13. Hard Cheese:
Hard cheese is a smart alternative to other milk products. It reduces the symptoms of lactose intolerance and helps you find quick relief from its painful symptoms.
Interesting fact: Eating full fat cheese maintains cholesterol and reduces appetite (10).
Diet Tips For Lactose Intolerant Patients:
Here are a few diet tips you must incorporate in order to control the symptoms of lactose intolerance.
- Go for smaller servings of dairy products. Do not drink more than 4 ounces of milk per day.
- Choose lactose-free products as much as you can.
- Lactose is also present in some medications. Make sure you speak to an expert before purchasing them.
- Try enzyme tablets or drops. Add one to your glass of milk before drinking.
- Never drink milk alone. If you do so, make sure you have eaten something substantial before that.
Lactose intolerance is quite a painful condition to go through, although it is not very hard to treat. The remedies discussed above would be of great help if you follow them diligently. If you don’t feel any improvement in your condition, do make it a point to visit your doctor.
Till then, take great care of your health and stay safe.
If you suffer from lactose intolerance, please share your experiences with us. Leave a comment below.
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