How sufferers can learn to spot the difference
Recent studies show that 38% of people who think they suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome might in fact be lactose intolerant. So if you're one of these people, you could be taking unnecessary medication.
People with lactose intolerance may feel uncomfortable within 30 minutes to 2 hours after consuming milk and dairy products. Symptoms include:
Sounds familiar? One way to save unnecessary trips to the doctor is by undergoing an appropriate elimination diet, which can be an effective way to determine the cause of symptoms. Eliminate all lactose from your system for two weeks; if symptoms improve, you may be lactose intolerant. Lactose should then be gradually reintroduced to discover your tolerance levels. Learn more about the elimination diet by visiting lactoseintolerant.
Bear in mind, too, that another cause of digestive discomfort can be cow's milk allergy.
Symptomatic of milk allergies are: hives; vomiting; and gastric distress such as diarrhoea, constipation, or stomach pain. It can also cause potentially fatal anaphylactic reactions, so if you are allergic to milk products, take care to avoid them altogether.
If you think you may have cows' milk allergy, you should seek advice from your GP or a registered dietitian.
Learn more about living with lactose intolerance here.
Like us on facebook
Follow us on twitter
Other Hearst Magazines UK sites