Acne, flatulence, nausea, headaches, bloating, diarrhea. These are all symptoms of lactose intolerance, and anyone can obtain it at anytime – of course, the earlier you detect it the better.
Once you discover that you are lactose intolerant, and you need to give your diet a complete overhaul, it can feel like it’s impossible to enjoy life’s delicious treats, even as something as simple as a container of vanilla yogurt or a bowl of cereal. You need to ask yourself: what’s more important? Eating yummy foods or living a healthy life?
But you don’t necessarily need to endure the suffering and unhappiness that is usually associated with lactose intolerance. Thanks to the marketplace, there are so many options for those who can’t digest milk or those who choose not to.
Here are five tips for living with your lactose intolerance:
1. Try the Tolerance Test Once in a While
We all have varying degrees of what we can tolerant and how much. This is why some food experts recommend that you take the tolerance test – don’t worry, you won’t need to book an appointment with your general practitioner.
Here is what you do: drink two glasses of skim milk on an empty stomach. Should you immediately experience a lot of gas within two to four hours, then you have a great deal of intolerance and you should give up products with lactose.
That said, health experts note that you can consume a few ounces of meals with lactose.
2. Transition to Goat’s Milk or Other Alternatives
As soon as you discover that your morning glass of cow’s milk is flaring up your lactose intolerance, you should start to seek out alternatives.
Many food professionals say that the best transition you can make is into goat’s milk. If you don’t find the taste quite satisfying, then you can also consider a wide array of other alternatives, including soy, almond, cashew or coconut beverages.
These also come in a variety of flavours, like chocolate or vanilla.
3. Eat Many Calcium & Vitamin K-Rich Foods
Once you move away from lactose, you will need to add plenty of foods that are rich in calcium and vitamin K in your diet. Calcium provides you with excellent bone health, while vitamin K helps you absorb the calcium and gives your liver a boost.
For calcium, eat cooked kale, broccoli, sardines, bok choy, watercress, spinach and orange juice fortified with calcium. For vitamin K, imbibe green leafy vegetables (kale, collards, spinach and romaine), brussels sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage, broccoli, and fish.
4. Focus on the Ingredients on Packaging
You will not believe how much lactose is inside packaged goods as well as medication. Because lactose is a common filler, you will notice it in pretty much everything you put in your mouth.
Here is what you should avoid: instant potatoes, lunch meats, whey, breakfast drinks, cookie mixes, salad dressings and powdered meal replacements.
5. Let Your Friends & Family Know
Finally, and this is important: be sure to let your friends and family know.
Yes, you will think that you are being an inconvenience and a burden on your closest relatives and dear friends, but you really aren’t. It’s just that the next time you go over to your friend’s place or your brother’s house, you won’t be served a big bowl of white lasagna, fettucine alfredo or cheesecake.
This is better for your health anyway!
Being lactose intolerant can sometimes be a pain in the neck. You want to eat all the delicious foods in the world: cheesecake, lasagna, cheese burgers, Lucky Charms with cold milk and Peak Freens. Unfortunately, this cannot be, but you won’t need to endure anything because there are so many products available in the open market to satisfy your taste buds.
Besides, what’s better? Eating pesto and then constantly sneezing or consuming kale and feeling great? You decide.