When To See Your Healthcare Provider
If you have just developed symptoms that could point to lactose intolerance, it’s important to consult with your healthcare provider. You should make an appointment if you have:
- A change in your bowel habits
- Worsening constipation, diarrhea, or gas
- Heartburn that keeps you from sleeping
- Other symptoms that concern you or negatively impact your life
Lactose intolerance can also be caused by medications or by an underlying condition that damages cells lining the intestines, such as:
Symptoms Of Lactose Intolerance And Celiac Disease
Tummy troubles? When some people are diagnosed with celiac disease, they also discover that they are lactose intolerant and have difficulty digesting milk and dairy products. Read on to learn all about lactose intolerance and celiac disease and their symptoms. Gastroenterologists are doctors who specialize in the diagnosis and treatment of digestive disorders, including lactose intolerance and celiac disease.
Lactose Intolerance Overview
Lactose intolerance is a condition in which people have digestive symptoms after eating or drinking milk or dairy products. People with lactose intolerance are unable to fully digest the sugar in dairy products. Lactose intolerance is caused by a deficiency of an enzyme in the body called lactase. Lactose intolerance is not serious. Your doctor may do a breath, blood or stool test to find out if your problems are due to lactose intolerance.Symptoms of Lactose Intolerance
After drinking or eating dairy products, you may feel sick to your stomach. You may also have loose stools or diarrhea, gas, pain, or cramps in the lower belly, rumbling or gurgling sounds in the lower belly. or swelling in your stomach. If you are lactose intolerant, you may still be able to eat or drink small amounts of milk. Some individuals do better if they have dairy with a meal.
Celiac Disease Overview
Eczema And Other Allergic Symptoms
Finally, there is a chance that some other common allergic symptoms can be caused by lactose intolerance. Again, the research is older , but some studies suggest a connection between a person’s inability to digest lactose and recurring allergy symptoms like eczema and sinus congestion.
For example, a;Postgraduate Medical Journal review studied small groups of patients reporting itching, skin rashes, nasal allergy symptoms, and asthma and found that many of the patients ultimately diagnosed as lactose intolerant during the testing period reported symptoms like eczema, rhinitis, and sinusitis. If it isn’t dairy, your skin problems may also be linked to these 6 Worst-Ever Foods for Your Skin.
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Things You Should Know About Reflux
What is reflux?
Reflux in babies is caused by an immature digestive system and symptoms usually resolve in the first 12 months. The contents of a babys stomach is regurgitated back up their oesophagus or into the mouth. This is called gastro oesophageal reflux or GOR.
It is very common in newborns, often referred to as spitting up or posseting, and is usually instant and effortless. The contents are sometimes swallowed back into the stomach instead of coming out the mouth.
How do I know if my baby has reflux?
The most common symptom of reflux, and the easiest to spot, is if your baby is regurgitating milk, especially after feeds. Other symptoms can include:
- Difficulty eating or swallowing
I think my baby has reflux what should I do?
Up to 1 in 3 infants suffer from regurgitation or mild reflux.
Reflux is normally not a sign of a serious health issue, and you can continue to feed your baby normally, but it is always a good idea to get medical advice from a doctor if you are concerned or if you think your child is in pain.
What is silent reflux?
Silent reflux, also known as laryngopharyngeal reflux , occurs when stomach contents are brought back up into the voice box, the back of the throat or the nasal passages. This type of reflux doesnt usually cause the baby to vomit or posset, which makes it more difficult to detect.
How do I know if my baby has silent reflux?
When does a baby with reflux get better?
How do you help a baby with reflux to sleep at night?
What Will The Doctor Do
If you and your parent think you might have lactose intolerance, the next step is to see your doctor. After hearing about your symptoms and doing an exam, your doctor may ask you to stop eating dairy for a period of time. If your symptoms improve on a dairy-free diet, but happen again when you try dairy again, there’s a good chance you are lactose intolerant.
The doctor also can test your breath to see if you show signs of lactose intolerance. Thery’ll check your breath for hydrogen a gas you cannot see or taste. When lactose isn’t digested, the bacteria that normally live in the large intestine use it and make hydrogen gas.
To test the amount of hydrogen, the doctor will have you drink something with lactose in it. You’ll blow into a mask or bag to check the hydrogen level in your breath about every 15 minutes during the test. If it’s high, you might have lactose intolerance.
If you do have lactose intolerance, your doctor will talk to you about the best ways to treat it and help you feel your best. You will play a big part in how you feel because it’s up to you to watch what you eat. You might want to keep a list of foods that make you feel sick, so you can steer clear of them in the future. Talking with a dietitian someone who specializes in food and nutrition could help you decide what to eat and what not to eat.
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Living With Lactose Intolerance
Some people with lactose intolerance must avoid all foods containing lactose, but others can eat some dairy foods. Many people can drink lactose-free milk that has added calcium. Ask your doctor if this could be a good choice for you.
If you are new to lactose intolerance, start by figuring out what’s best for you to eat. When you do eat dairy products, stick with foods that have smaller amounts of lactose in them, such as aged cheeses, including cheddar.
Yogurt that contains live cultures is more easily digested because it contains healthy bacteria that produce lactase. Even if you’re lactose intolerant, you may be able to handle smaller portions of your favorite dairy products. It also may help to eat a food that does not contain lactose along with a food that does, so have some fruit with your bagel and cream cheese!
If you have lactose intolerance, make sure you still get enough calcium from foods like tofu, leafy green veggies , lactose-free milk, and juices or soy milk that have added calcium. Eating a healthy diet that includes many different kinds of food should do the trick.
If you can’t seem to get enough calcium in your diet, your doctor may recommend a calcium supplement. You also need to get the right amount of vitamin D, which helps your body use calcium.
So keep on enjoying your snacks and meals, but choose your foods and drinks wisely so you’ll feel good before and after you eat!
Could My Baby Have Cows Milk Protein Allergy
Constipation is a common symptom for babies with CMPA.
Babies with CMPA usually experience more than just one symptom and these symptoms can be very different from one another.
If you think that your baby has constipation, it could be CMPA.
You may have even noticed other symptoms , which may affect other parts of your babys body.
For a simple and easy way to check common symptoms associated with CMPA, you can use our symptom checker.
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Why Does Dairy Cause Constipation
The milk that most of us buy is deemed to be a processed food due to the processes it goes through before it reaches the shelves. It may contain both antibiotics and hormones from the cows it originates from, and is almost always pasteurised in order to kill off milk-borne bacteria. However, the pasteurisation process also removes valuable enzymes that help us to digest the milk, as well as other important vitamins and minerals. Additionally, in contrast to traditional farming methods, intensive farming techniques have led to cows being fed grain rather than grass. This has the potential to cause further digestive problems and act as a trigger for constipation, particularly in those sensitive to grains.
Dairy is considered by many health practitioners to be mucus-forming in the body, and for this reason it can be helpful to avoid dairy products if you are suffering from a cold or hay fever and trying to relieve a runny nose. In Traditional Chinese Medicine, milk and other dairy products are labelled as damp-inducing foods , which may also go some way to explaining why they could cause constipation and digestive problems. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Spleen meridian does not like cold or so-called damp foods, with ice cream being a strong example.
What Is The Difference Between Lactose Intolerance And Milk Allergies
Lactose intolerance and milk allergies are different conditions with different causes. Lactose intolerance is caused by problems digesting lactose, the natural sugar in milk. In contrast, milk allergies are caused by your immune systems response to one or more proteins in milk and milk products.
A milk allergy most often appears in the first year of life, while lactose intolerance typically appears later.3,4 Lactose intolerance can cause uncomfortable symptoms, while a serious allergic reaction to milk can be life threatening.
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Constipation In Babies: Information For Parents & Caregivers
Constipation is the passing of a hard poo with pain or discomfort and your child does not go to the toilet regularly.
What causes constipation in babies?
Constipation in babies is quite rare, affecting around 15% babies in the first year of life, and should be checked by a doctor.
The causes of constipation in babies includes:
- Formula that is made up incorrectly .
- Changing to a different formula.
- Not enough fluids over a day bottle-fed infants will require more water between formula feeds.
- The introduction of new foods to the diet.
- Delaying toileting sometimes the baby seems to delay going to the toilet because they are expecting pain, and this can make the problem worse.
What are the signs of constipation in babies?
Many parents think that their baby is experiencing constipation when the frequency of pooing changes. Your babys poos should be a smooth, soft sausage like consistency.;Some babies can go once a feed, others once every few days some may only go once a week.
Breastfed babies are rarely constipated because break milk is easier to digest than formula. Furthermore, a large amount of time between bowel movements is not necessarily an indication of constipation.
The most important sign of constipation in babies is that their poo is separate hard lumps and hard to pass or sausage-shaped but lumpy.
Other symptoms of constipation can include:
What to do if your baby has constipation
Additional suggestions may help, including:
When should I see a doctor?
Lactose Intolerance May Not Cause Constipation
Even if your digestive systems response to consuming milk is to make you constipated, this does not automatically make you lactose intolerant. If you do have the condition, drinking milk may cause diarrhea, not constipation.;
Other symptoms brought about by the same condition include abdominal discomfort, gas, and feeling bloated. This is due to the absence of lactase, which breaks down milk, causing the dairy to start fermenting and releasing excess gas. It is a good thing lactose intolerance can be managed with a probiotic supplement, which works like the enzyme that helps facilitate lactose breakdown in the digestive system.;
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Why Is Dairy Linked To Constipation
Dairy, in general, is thought to be one of the leading causes of constipation. This could be due to how heavily processed most milk options in the market are.;
The milk from cows may be contaminated by the originating cows hormones and antibiotics throughout the process. This is why their milk gets pasteurized first to eliminate its inherent bacteria. But during the process, beneficial enzymes hasten digestion, along with some critical minerals and vitamins.;
Due to the high demand for cows milk, farming techniques have changed. Instead of naturally feeding cows with grass, like how they used to, now they are fed grain. So, does milk cause constipation? This farming practice poses the risk of causing digestive issues, including constipation, especially in people who are sensitive to grains.
Many health practitioners may warn patients suffering from hay fever or colds to stay away from dairy products because of their mucus-inducing properties. Drinking milk only worsens ones runny nose and causes the internal systems to slow down. This could be another potential explanation to support the affirmative answer to the question, does milk cause constipation?;
Dairy products, including ice cream, cheese, and milk have long been listed as foods that lead to constipation when consumed in excess. This is likely because these dairy products are low in fiber but rich in fat.
You Experience Bloating Gas Stomach Pain Or Diarrhea After Consuming Dairy Products
The most common symptoms of dairy intolerance include abdominal pain, gas, bloating or diarrhea, which typically begin 30 minutes to two hours after eating or drinking foods that contain lactose, according to the Mayo Clinic.
These symptoms occur because the body is unable to fully digest lactose, causing a buildup of gas in the colon, according to research by the Department of Gastroenterology at the Guys and St Thomas NHS Foundation Trust in London.
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About Constipation: Causes And Signs
Constipation often occurs when stool moves too slowly in the digestive tract, causing it to become hard or dry and difficult to eliminate. Constipation can be caused by dehydration, certain medications, physical inactivity and many diseases or conditions, Mayo Clinic reports.
Signs of constipation include having fewer than three stools a week and feeling as if you can’t fully or comfortably pass stool. It’s important to talk to your doctor if you experience constipation on a regular basis or if it gets worse.
Because it is not a known symptom of lactose intolerance, having constipation might indicate that you have another health issue. Medical conditions that can cause constipation include blockages and other problems in the colon or rectum as well as diseases that affect nerves in those areas.
Study Shows Soy Milk Is Better For Bowel Movements
Does milk cause constipation? A study published in the journal Nutrients shows the answer to this question. The study researchers investigated the effects of beta-casein A1 and beta-casein A2 in cows milk on chronic functional constipation .
For the two-week study, the researchers gave some children cows milk. Meanwhile, the others were given soy milk. They found that CFC is related to cows milk consumption.
The children who consumed soy milk showed better bowel movements than those who drank the cows milk. Children whose constipation resolved on the soy milk;had cows milk protein intolerance.
The beta-casein in A2 gene in milk did work on some children, but the results were mixed. On the other hand, the milk with the A2 gene is said to be good for lactose-intolerant people.
Various types of raw milk and breast milk naturally contain;probiotics. The probiotics in raw milk neutralize the elements that cause constipation in pasteurized milk. Yogurt or milk fermented with probiotics can significantly reduce constipation.
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Symptoms Of Milk Allergies
But the classic symptoms of milk intolerance are diarrhea, spitting up, or abdominal pain. Many kids with milk intolerance also wheeze, especially when they get a cold. They can also have the dry, sensitive skin of eczema and their noses always seem to be running. Ear infections are also more common than in other kids. Constipation, however, has not been typically associated with milk intolerance â until now.
The observation that constipation might sometimes be caused by milk intolerance has appeared in the medical literature from time to time, dating back as far as 1954. But only recently has there been a well-designed study published showing that this is indeed the case. The results of this study have helped many children to enjoy the exuberance of childhood without pain.
Studying Milk Allergies And Constipation
Researchers at the University of Palermo in Italy worked with 65 children with chronic constipation. All of these children had been treated with laxatives when dietary measures had failed. Even with the medical treatment, these children were still constipated, having hard, painful stools only every 3 to 15 days. Forty-nine of their little bottoms had fissures and redness or swelling from the hard plugs of stool.
Each child received either cowâs milk or soymilk for 2 weeks, with no one knowing which was which. Next, they had a week during which they could eat and drink anything they wanted to wash out the effects of the first 2 weeks. Then they switched sides for 2 weeks and got the milk that they didnât get the first time. Careful recordings of the bowel habits were made.
When the secret code was broken at the end of the study, they found status quo constipation for each child while he or she was on cowâs milk. But while they were taking soymilk , 68% of these kids were no longer constipated! The redness, swelling, and fissures on their bottoms healed. How wonderful to finally have relief after diet and medicines hadnât worked for so long!
The results were most dramatic in kids who also had frequent runny noses, eczema, or wheezing. Nevertheless, sometimes constipation can be the only symptom of cowâs milk intolerance.
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