Lactose (milk) intolerance is caused when the body’s ability to produce an enzyme called lactase diminishes to absorb the lactose. It is the sugar found in milk. As this undigested lactose enters into the large intestine, it causes gastrointestinal complications such as gas formation and diarrhea.
Although lactose deficiency does not cause health hazard, it still causes discomfort in the body. The causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment for this health issue have been discussed in this article.
Some of the major causes of intolerance:
Millions of people around the world are deficient in lactose. The cause of this menace can vary from person to person. The major causes of deficiency are as follow
Primary lactose intolerance:
It is the common type of lactose (milk) intolerance wherein bodies stop producing enough lactase at around the age of five. On reaching the adulthood, formation of lactase becomes negligible thereby making the digestion of lactose in milk almost impossible.
Secondary milk intolerance:
This condition happens when any kind of injury affects the functioning of small intestine. It results in lesser making of lactose in the body. People suffering from Crohn’s disease and Celiac disease develop this abnormality and lactose deficiency.
Developmental milk intolerance:
This stage occurs in premature babies and not permanent in nature. It lasts for a short time, post birth period and reduces gradually. Stool acid test, a type of lactose intolerance test can be used for infants suffering from this condition.
Symptoms to detect this particular intolerance in the body:
An understanding of the symptoms is required for early medical intervention. There are various symptoms and their severity depends on how bad the condition of intolerance is
iii) Uneasiness in the stomach
iv) Nausea and vomiting
Hydrogen breathe test, a diagnostic procedure to detect the lactose deficiency:
This test necessitates the patients to consume lactose loaded liquid. Thereafter the measurement of hydrogen is analyzed by the doctors. In case the person has the intolerance the fermented lactose releases hydrogen gases in the colon. These gases are absorbed by the intestine and exhaled in form of breathing out. A breath test measures the amount of hydrogen being exhaled. One can book milk intolerance test online as the medical sites provide services at reasonable cost and make the reports available within twenty four hours.
Treatment method to curb the discomfort of this health issue:
One suffering from this particular deficiency must avoid consumption of dairy milk and its products. Rather, the patients can try soy milk, almond and coconut milks as substitutes. Intake of probiotics maintains healthy gastrointestinal system and control symptoms of bloating and gas. It is found in yoghurt or can be consumed in form of supplement.
Lactose deficiency is a common health disorder found in innumerable people. it poses no fatal threat to the human life. However, its early diagnosis and treatment is essential to mitigate the uncomfortable gastrointestinal symptoms.