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Dietary help: Lactose Intolerance

Updated on December 7, 2017

My painful experiences

Last year, I felt severely sick and having severe stomach ache from eating chocolate and cheese when I was still at home with my family and siblings there with me. One day, I decided to go to the doctors and get myself checked out. So, the doctor decided to referred me to the Royal Victoria Infirmary Hospital at Newcastle and I was at the Immunology and Allergy Clinic which they have been doing blood test and the prick test on my skin to see if there is any swelling on my skin but however it came back as negative.

After that, me and the doctor have talked what's going to happen when the result have come through the post and the Doctor have sent us home.

After 6 weeks, the letter has came through the post and the Doctor has sent us to see the dietician what other food I can have other than having medication. When I was going to see the dietician, she was giving us some information about what I can have other than having food with dairy or milk product in it.

Additionally, being lactose intolerance is painful, and it is very stressful to find snacks or what you can eat for a meal. Also, do not feel ashamed of having this condition because think of the bright side, you can lose weight faster.

What is lactose intolerance? And how is this caused?

I will briefly give a summary on what kind of condition is lactose intolerance so, lactose intolerance is digesting problem that your body cannot take in dairy products such as chocolate, desserts, cheese, butter, dip sauce, sauce, milk etc. Also, everyone has an enzyme in their body called lactase which is in your intestines and what this enzyme does is to breaks down the dairy products we take in but, those who is/are lactose intolerance, their enzyme does not break down or digest the dairy/lactose products we take in.

What are the symptoms?

The most common symptoms of lactose intolerance are you will constantly feel nausea, sick, having diarrhoea, stomach cramps, stomach rumbling, you may feel like if you want to wind (burp or fart) and pains after you’ve eaten any dairy products. On the other hand, symptoms might show on your face such as looking pale and lip swelling. Also, do not get these symptoms mistaken with milk allergy as it can be different.
However, these symptoms can also be caused by IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) which is a disorder for your digesting symptoms and milk protein intolerance which is a reaction from cow’s milk.

Could this be the same as allergy and what are the difference between lactose intolerance and milk allergy?

This is not the same as the milk or dairy allergy because lactose intolerance is based on your enzymes and how there is not enough lactase enzymes to breaks down the lactose food you take into your body but while milk or dairy allergy on the other hand, is mostly common for children as they may grow out of it and milk or dairy allergy can happen in matters of minutes.

However, the symptoms of milk or dairy food allergy is very like lactose intolerance but even more serious as the symptoms also includes stomach pain, nausea and diarrhoea. On the other hand, milk allergies can be seen on the external areas of your body which the symptoms are rashes, trouble breathing and swelling of the lips or throat.

However, for those who have lactose intolerance will not have skin rashes, trouble breathing and swelling of the lips or throat as it will only be in the internal area of the body will it be effected.

Who is it commonly affected?

Lactose intolerance is commonly affects adults or in certain cases babies can be affected to and the most common types of people who gets affected is Native Americans, Asians, Africans, South American, Indians and African-Caribbean. Also, it is not common for Europeans to be affected by this condition.

However, certain people will grow out of being Lactose intolerant but others, will not grow out of it as it is a long term issue for them.

If diagnosed?

If you do have these symptoms, go to the doctors and tell them about your symptoms as you may be given a blood test, a prick test on your skin or a breathing test (in certain countries) to see the results if you have it or not. Also, you will be referred to see a dietitian which they will give you advise on alternative calcium food you can eat but, they may tell you to try a little drop of milk or a little piece of chocolate to see if there are any symptoms occurs (this is only for the beginning of the diagnoses).

There are no cure for lactose intolerance but alternative, you could avoid any dairy or milk type food.


The biggest challenges is to find another type of food with calcium in it as calcium is good for your bones and to strengthen your bones. Also, it could be recommended that you could go to your Doctors and check if you can ask for the Doctor if you are eligible to be prescribed for any pills to do with vitamin D.

What to have that has calcium in it without dairy or milk product in it:

Alternatively, you can have other food or drinks which have calcium in it and you don't have to take vitamin D to gain calcium to develop or strengthen your bones. Also, you may find certain food or drinks that has a lot of calcium in it that has no dairy or lactose in it such as it is been listed certain foods or drinks below.

  • Tofu
    Dairy free yogurt
    Soya milk
    Almond milk
    Rice milk
    Hazelnut milk
    Oat milk
    Bran flakes
    Coconut milk
    Peanut butter

Ingredients that also refers to dairy product that people may know or may not heard of:

There are other dairy ingredients used in products that we may not know the name and it has been named in other form of dairy ingredients which is listed below.

  • Lactalbumin
    Lactalbumin phosphate
    Lactoferrin margarine
    Butter esters casein
    Hydrolysed casein
    Sodium caseimate
    Cow’s milk in every form of way (fresh, dried, evaporated, Condensed powder, UHT)
    Whey (sour milk solids whey, hydrolysed whey, powder whey syrup sweetener)
    Artificial cream curds
    Fromage Frais
    Any sort of animal’s milk

Food or drinks to avoid:

I know, there is a ridiculously long list of food or drink to avoid which is extremely stressful and annoying. There are a lot of people might or may that 'you are missing out a lot of good food' or 'I feel sorry for you that you cant have these type of food' as I know it may put certain people down because of the comments that has been made but, do not be ashamed of people making a comment about yourself. Also, below I have listed certain food that has lactose or dairy products in it.

  • Chocolate (except dairy free chocolate)
    Milk powder
    Fresh/condensed/evaporated milk
    Coffee whiteners
    Coffee powder
    All type of ice cream (except soya and coconut ice cream) , yoghurt (except soya and coconut yoghurt), dairy desserts, cheese (except soya cheese) and fresh/tinned milk
    All types of animal milks
    Instant whips such as angel delights, mousse
    Meat or fish in cream/milk/ cheese sauces
    Macaroni cheese


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