People with lactose intolerance are incapable of digesting foods that contain lactose, which is present in milk and other food products. This is because, in order to digest lactose, an enzyme called lactase must be present.
People whose small intestines cannot produce lactase experience adverse reactions. They may suffer from stomach ache, nausea, diarrhea, bloating, cramping, and gas.
However, there are ways to a healthier stomach for people that cannot tolerate lactose. Here are 6 ways to a healthier stomach:
1. Eat Yogurt
Yogurt contains active bacteria that are believed to help digest lactose. Once you take yogurt, the bile breaks the bacteria walls so that they are able to release beta-galactosidase, an enzyme that acts like lactase.
Once this enzyme is in the intestine, lactose is broken down and digested. A person that cannot tolerate lactose shall not experience the adverse symptoms.
2. Eat the Right Food Products
People that cannot tolerate lactose can still drink milk and consume foods that contain milk. When you drink milk, limit it to one cup each time you drink.
This will reduce the symptoms of lactose intolerance. Drinking milk or eating foods that has a milk ingredient must be done with one’s meals. Instead of ingesting milk, you can turn to yogurt.
3. Try Soy Milk
Milk made from soybeans can be used to flavor cereals or as milk drinks. Soy milk is good for infants and adults. It is also called buttermilk or acidophilus milk. This is one of the best milks for people that cannot tolerate lactose.
4. Increase Calcium Intake
Milk is one of the best sources of calcium, which is responsible for strong bones and teeth. Lactose intolerant people can only drink a little amount of milk. Make up for the amount of calcium you missed by including calcium-rich foods in your diet.
Eat leafy vegetables are dark green in color such as spinach, soy milk, yogurt, fortified cereals, and fortified fruit juices.
5. Carefully Read Labels
Read labels of food packages and containers. If you cannot tolerate lactose, avoid buying items containing milk and other milk products. Non-fat milk may contain lactose so it is best to avoid them. You must be wary when buying baked goods, ice cream, soups, and salad dressings.
6. Go for Lactase or Products that Contain Reduced Lactose
Stick to food products that contain lactase or small amounts of lactose. You can find milk products in stores that say lactose-reduced. This type of milk is even sweeter than regular milk.
You can also treat milk with lactase, which is sold as liquids, fluids, or cubes in drugstores and department stores. Once you have treated milk with lactase, only a very small amount of lactose remains.
People with lactose tolerance do not have to avoid milk all the time. You can still enjoy the delicious taste of regular milk without worrying about your condition.
If you are worried about getting short of calcium, you can include spinach and other vegetables with a dark green color. Knowing what is good for you will help you manage your condition in order to achieve a full and happy life.