If your children are having milk allergy, they probably having lactose intolerance. For many kids, an ice cream sundae or a cool glass of milk at lunch means an afternoon of cramps, gas, and diarrhea. Kids who have this kind of discomfort after consuming dairy products might have lactose intolerance, which is caused by problems digesting lactose, the main sugar in milk and milk products. Lactose intolerance happens when the body makes too little of the enzyme lactase, which is needed to break down lactose into two smaller sugars, called glucose and galactose. When there’s not enough lactase in the body, lactose doesn’t get broken down in the small intestine, and it passes into the large intestine where bacteria ferment it into gases and acids. This process can cause cramps, abdominal pain, gas, and diarrhea about 30 minutes to 2 hours after consuming any foods or drinks that contain lactose. For some kids, these symptoms are very severe and their systems can’t tolerate any lactose. For others, the symptoms are milder and they just have to limit the number of dairy products they consume. For most people with lactose intolerance, it remains a lifelong problem. But for some kids, it’s a temporary condition that begins after they take certain antibiotics or have gastrointestinal infections, and eventually goes away.
✨Here are five symptoms you should look out for:
1️⃣Loose stools and gas, especially with consumption of foods containing a large number of dairy products, which contain lactose
2️⃣Watery diarrhea with gas
3️⃣Stomach bloating, flatulence, nausea
4️⃣Skin rash and frequent colds
5️⃣Generalized abdominal pain and cramping
If you don’t want to give up dairy, then there are a few natural treatments that can help.
It’s possible to buy enzymes to help digest lactose. These are tablets you swallow or drops you add to foods and drinks. However, the effectiveness of these products seems to vary from person to person. Nevertheless, lactase enzyme supplements may be very effective for some people. One study examined the effects of three different types of lactase supplements in lactose-intolerant people who took 20 or 50 grams of lactose.
Compared to placebo, all three lactase supplements improved overall symptoms when taken with 20 grams of lactose. However, they weren’t effective at a higher dose of 50 grams of lactose.
If you are lactose intolerant, regularly including lactose in your diet could help your body adapt to it. So far, studies on this are few and far between, but initial studies have shown some positive results. In one small study, nine lactose-intolerant people experienced a threefold increase in their lactase production after 16 days of eating lactose. More rigorous trials are needed before definite recommendations can be made, but it may be possible to train your gut to tolerate lactose.
3️⃣Probiotics and Prebiotics
Probiotics are microorganisms that provide health benefits when consumed. Prebiotics are types of fiber that function as food for these bacteria. They feed the beneficial bacteria you already have in your gut so that they thrive. Both probiotics and prebiotics have been shown to reduce symptoms of lactose intolerance, although most studies so far have been small. Some types of probiotics and prebiotics may be more effective than others for people with lactose intolerance. One of the most beneficial probiotics is thought to be Bifidobacteria, often found in probiotic yogurts and supplements. (Article by Health Essentials, Kidshealth, Healthline)