If you are lactose intolerant, drinking milk or eating dairy products might cause severe health conditions such as diarrhea, gas, or bloating. This is because your body does not digest the sugar in dairy (lactose) properly. You can probably manage your condition without having to avoid all dairy, which is ideal because dairy products are great sources of calcium and vitamin D. Here are three ways to help you manage them better:
* Stick to small servings of dairy: Do not overwhelm your body with lactose. Try to limit drinking milk to 4 ounces at a time (118 ml) or less. Drink low-fat milk instead of whole milk. It’s likely that you can have some amount of dairy, and just have to discover your limit. Start with a very small serving of one dairy product, and if you do not have any symptoms, then try a larger serving the next day.
* Consume dairy with meals. You’re less likely to get symptoms if you have dairy with other food. Taking dairy with meals makes it easier for your body to digest everything, and will likely cause fewer symptoms for you than just having dairy on its own
* Include the lactose enzyme in your meal. Lactose is the enzyme that breaks down lactose in your body (most people are lactose intolerant because their body doesn’t have enough lactase). You can get tablets or drops from your drug store, usually over-the-counter, which contain lactase. These products come in different forms. Some you take as a tablet before eating lactose; others are liquids or powders that you add to dairy product.