Congratulations you’ve discovered the beginners guide for a Lactose Free Life. The place where your stomach goes to be happy. Let’s get started.
What Can I Eat?
Those were my first thoughts when I learned I was lactose intolerant (LI). The best place to start is the What Can I Eat Guide. It includes dairy substitutions, prevention, cheeses, restaurants, etc. In other words, it’s an excellent place to start for beginners.
What Should I Avoid?
Have you heard this answer, “avoid all dairy products”? Yeah still, it isn’t always that simple. Why? Because of work parties, dinner parties, wedding parties, holiday parties, holidays, arrhh! Do these ring a bell for you?
Also what are “all dairy products”? Here are some of my tips for beginners to stay lactose free and avoid problems.
- Learn what foods have dairy in them. There are quick indicators of dairy. One example is to avoid all creamy sauces. Most of them are creamy because of milk or heavy cream.
- Be vigilant about checking for dairy. For example, if a person says, “there’s no dairy” yet the food has all the signs of dairy avoid it.
- Find your triggers. Know if you can eat a slice of pizza, or two, or should you avoid pizza altogether.
- Learn the dairy substitutions so you can eat confidently.
- Finally, always keep lactase pills on you.
What is Lactose Intolerance (LI)?
The simple version is that eating foods with dairy will hurt your stomach – gas, bloating, diarrhea, pain, etc. I’m sure you have looked this up already but if you have not the next paragraph is a definition from the Mayo Clinic.
From the Mayo Clinic…
People with lactose intolerance are unable to fully digest the sugar (lactose) in milk. As a result, they have diarrhea, gas and bloating after eating or drinking dairy products. The condition, which is also called lactose malabsorption, is usually harmless, but its symptoms can be uncomfortable.Source: Mayo Clinic
Too little of an enzyme produced in your small intestine (lactase) is usually responsible for lactose intolerance. You can have low levels of lactase and still be able to digest milk products. But if your levels are too low you become lactose intolerant, leading to symptoms after you eat or drink dairy.