Nowadays, every time we go to the supermarket to buy milk there’s a wide variety. Skimmed, semi-skimmed, along with lactose-free milk like oat milk or rice. Here we’ll be exploring the latter type, more specifically the benefits of lactose-free milk that have been a lifesaver for anyone (such as myself) who has lactose intolerance.
One of the main benefits of lactose-free milk we need to highlight is that it allows lactose intolerant individuals to replace conventional milk without missing out of calcium and other nutrients milk provides. The calcium and other nutrients essential for our bodies to function smoothly are abundant in the lactose-free milk, the same way they are in regular milk.
Lactose free milk is also a touch sweeter, making it more palatable for younger children
It is great for heart health
Keeps bones stronger
Is easier on the digestion
Completely free of the carbs that create the issues in the regular milk
How do you know if you are lactose intolerant?
Steps to follow:
What makes dairy products difficult to digest it’s lactose content. Lactose is a sugar present in dairy products for which the enzyme lactase is required. All humans are born with good levels of lactase, this is because we need breast milk for our growth.
However, as we grow older, the levels of lactase in our body reduce. Why does this happen? Because our bodies function like that of all mammals: when we grow, we become omnivorous and we no longer need milk to survive.
However, humans are the only mammals that consume milk and its derivatives in adulthood, not because our bodies need it, since calcium can be obtained from other foods, but out of habit. However, by having less lactase enzyme, our body does not digest dairy products in the same way as it did when we were babies. Over time, this fact can make us lactose intolerant.
But what are the symptoms of lactose intolerance ?
While it’s true that all adults have difficulty digesting dairy products, not all are lactose intolerant. The main signs of lactose intolerance that occur when we drink milk. It can also happen when we consume cheese (especially fresh cheeses, these are very rich in lactose), yogurt, ice creams and foods with high milk content. The symptoms are:
Inflammation of the stomach
Abdominal pain and discomfort
Gases, usually smelly
As we can see, lactose intolerance isn’t just a feeling that lactose isn’t right for you, it’s a physical manifestation with clear symptoms. There are several levels of intolerance, some people with moderate intolerance can withstand dairy better than those with acute intolerance.
Other conditions, such as irritable bowel syndrome or Crohn’s disease, usually goes hand in hand with lactose intolerance. It needs to be mentioned that not all people who suffer from Crohn’s, and irritable bowel patients have lactose intolerance, but it is more common within this group.
Does lactose-free milk help you lose weight?
If you’re wondering if lactose-free milk will help you miraculously shed weight, the answer is no. While the benefits of lactose-free are numerous, it really is just normal milk without the lactose. As with conventional milk, if you want to lose weight it is best to take skim milk without lactose instead of just standard lactose milk.
Other benefits of lactose-free milk
There are others benefits of lactose-free milk, such as being good for the heart. Its minerals help regulate blood pressure; while the vitamin B’s, although limited, helpin the production of red blood cells. But that’s not all, because of the combination of vitamin B and potassium, it also regulates the electrical activity of the heart.
This milk has an important amount of vitamins A and C, which translates into better skin care . Vitamin A helps to keep you hydrated while C assists in wound healing. .
When you get adequate amounts of vitamin A, it helps take care of vision and prevent problems like cataracts along with strengthening the immune system.
What to do if I’m lactose intolerant and I drink milk?
If you’re someone who suffers from lactose intolerance and you accidentally (or even on purpose) take in too much lactose rich foods – don’t panic! There are natural supplements, like Digestive Advantage, you can take to help to break down the lactose sugars in your body.
This means that you can avoid bloating and erm…embarrassing wind that may come with being lactose intolerant. Although someone who is Lactose intolerant should, in general, steer clear of lactose. If you have the occasional splurge then a supplement like Digestive Advantage, is a good idea to have at hand.
Conventional milk has approximately 45 grams of lactose per liter and lactose-free milk does not exceed gram per liter. Beware of milks with reduced lactose, which reach up to 18 grams of lactose per liter.