Lactose intolerance. Dairy Intolerant young girl refuses to drink milk - shallow depth of field. Selective focus on glass of milk

Did you know that 12% of all Americans may be lactose intolerant? This condition causes a lot of digestive problems. Having to deal with it can make enjoying some food and drinks difficult.

Now, what is lactose intolerance and what causes it? Are you also curious about what lactose intolerance you may have?

Learning more can help you know the limits of what you have to do for your treatment. Keep reading to learn more about what is lactose intolerance.

Who May Have Lactose Intolerance

Lactose intolerance can happen to anyone. But studies show that these ethnic groups are more prone to lactose intolerance:

  • African Americans
  • Asian Americans
  • Hispanics/Latinos
  • American Indians

The least common people to get it are those from families who come from Europe. Other factors could also make you prone to this condition. It may be premature birth as an infant or having a disease affecting the small intestine.

What Is Lactose Intolerance and What Causes It

Lactose intolerance is when people are unable to digest dairy products. It is a condition where you can have bloating, diarrhea, and gas after consuming lactose. Lactose is the sugar found in milk or any milk products like cheese.


Your symptoms will show within a few hours after taking in foods or drinks with lactose. Lactose intolerance causes these symptoms:

  • Bloating
  • Diarrhea
  • Gas
  • Nausea
  • Stomach pain
  • Growling in the stomach or rumbling sounds
  • Vomiting

These symptoms can be mild or severe. It all depends on your condition and the amount of lactose you ingested.


Lactose intolerance happens when you have lactose malabsorption. It causes your small intestine to produce a low amount of lactase. Lactase is the enzyme needed to break down lactose.

Undigested lactose now goes to your colon. Here, bacteria then break down the lactose and create fluid and gas. For some people, this extra fluid and gas cause lactose intolerance.

In other cases, it all comes down to your genes. Your genes can cause you to have lactose malabsorption.

What Is the Treatment

Treatment can differ depending on your condition. By understanding lactose intolerance, you can get the treatment right for you.

In most cases, you can manage the symptoms by changing your diet. You can start by limiting or avoiding foods and drinks that have lactose.

Limiting your milk, cheese, or dairy intake can prevent the symptoms from happening. For more nutrition insights, check out

Another way of treating lactose intolerance is by taking lactase products. This product has the enzymes needed to break down the lactose.

You can take it before eating or drinking milk products. You can also add lactase drops to your food or drink to break down the lactose in them.

Lactase-rich products lessen the chances of you having the symptoms. But make sure to consult a doctor before taking any lactase products.

Lactose Intolerance Explained

There are now more lactose intolerance products made. With these products, people having this condition may not have such a hard time.

Now you know what is lactose intolerance and what causes it. You can change your diet to avoid the symptoms. If you still crave dairy, lactase-rich products can help lower the chances of the symptoms.

Don’t forget to consult a doctor to know more about your condition and treat it the right way.

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