Lactose intolerance is a common condition that can cause uncomfortable symptoms. People with lactose intolerance are often told to avoid dairy. However, dairy is very nutritious and not all dairy foods are high in lactose.
This article lists down some dairy foods that are naturally low in lactose:
Lactose intolerance, what is it?
Lactose intolerance is common condition. In fact, 75% of the world’s population suffer from this condition. It is very common in South America and Asia as compared to North America.
People who has it don’t have enough of the enzyme lactase produced in their gut to breakdown the milk sugar lactose which can cause unwanted symptoms like bloating, gas, diarrhea, and pain.
For this reason, many lactose intolerant people are scared to eat any dairy foods. However, it is not always the case, most people can tolerate up to 12grams of lactose easily at a time without experiencing any symptoms.
Some foods are naturally low in lactose, below are some of them which you can enjoy even if you are lactose intolerant:
Butter is made by churning milk which separates the solid part of milk from the liquid part. The result is high fat product which is very low in lactose, the milk sugar. It is because the liquid part of milk that is very high in lactose separates when churning and the solid part which is mostly lactose free is used to make butter.
100 grams of butter contains only 0.1grams of lactose in it. So lactose this low is safe for use even for lactose intolerant people. If you are still concerned, using fermented milk products or clarified butter are even low in lactose then regular butter.
Cheese is made by separating the whey from the milk. Whey is the liquid part of the milk which is very high in lactose, so after separating whey, there is not much lactose left in the solid part of milk from which cheese is made.
However, different cheese has different amounts of amounts of lactose in the cheese that have been aged the longest have the lowest amount of lactose in it so it is best to get the cheese you know is aged because the bacteria in the cheese lets the lactose present in the cause it to break down the remaining lactose in it.
This means that the longer you keep cheese the lower lactose it has in it. 100 grams of cheddar cheese contains only trace amounts of lactose in it. Even some high lactose cheeses do not cause symptoms because they still contain less than 12 grams of lactose in them.
Most people who are lactose intolerant find it really easy to digest yogurt as compared to milk. This is because most yogurts contain live cultures that breakdown sugar in the yogurt making it very easy to digest, so you don’t need much lactase to breakdown lactose.
One study compared how well was lactose digested in lactose intolerant people when they drank milk or when they ate probiotic yogurt. The study found that when people with lactose intolerance ate the yogurt they were able to digest 66% more lactose then when they drank milk.
Eating yogurt also caused fewer symptoms compared to drinking milk with only 20% people reported symptoms compared to 80% people who experienced stressful lactose intolerant symptoms due to drinking milk.
It is best to eat yogurt with live bacteria that have culture in it that help in breaking lactose. Pasteurized yogurt must be avoided because it contains no bacteria and they are killed which makes it hard to digest for people with lactose intolerance.
Greek yogurts are also a very good choice for lactose intolerant people, it is because it even less lactose because it is strained during the manufacturing process making it even better because of less whey in it.
Contrary to the common belief, it is not necessary for lactose intolerant people to absolutely avoid all dairy products. There are some healthy choices which contain less lactose that are well tolerated by lactose intolerant people.
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