Lactose intolerance: symptoms and alternatives
What is lactose intolerance?
Lactose intolerance is the inability of certain adults to digest lactose, the sugar found in milk, because they do not generate enough lactase to properly digest lactose.
Symptoms of lactose intolerance
When the body fails to digest lactose enzymatically, it cannot be absorbed directly through the small intestine wall into the bloodstream. The body sends undigested lactose to the colon, where it is metabolized by the bacteria. In other words, lactose is fermented in the colon. The fermentation that is generated in the colon produces a large amount of gases that suddenly accumulate in that part of the body. The symptoms are unmistakable: abdominal discomfort, swelling, pain, cramps, gastrointestinal sounds, diarrhea and vomiting.
Lactose intolerance is not homonymous with milk allergy. The symptoms of milk allergy are related but can be considerably more severe. These include skin irritation and hives, wheezing, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, runny nose and watery eyes.
If you have these symptoms when consuming milk, you should ask your doctor and ask him or her for a test to define it.
Alternatives to milk
In athletes, removing milk from the diet means dispensing with even whey or casein. Keeping in mind that these are two of the best known genres of protein, this limitation may be inconvenient for people who play high-intensity sports. However, there is a great variety of foods that can give athletes the protein they need.
For starters, Hydrolyzed Whey supplements are virtually lactose-free, giving the best benefits of milk, avoiding the potential risks that lactose intake can produce. But what if we don’t want to be in any danger and want to cut down on the consumption of any kind of milk protein? No problem with this. We still have fabulous supplements available that form great protein sources. Now, we present some more popular ones:
Egg protein supplements: With quality and bioavailability ratings almost as good as those of whey, apart from a highly anabolic aminogram, egg protein supplements – also famous as egg albumin – are a great lactose-free component that is part of any genuine bodybuilder’s diet plan.
Beef protein supplements: Exaggeratedly popular among paleo-diet followers and the crossfit community, beef protein powder products have rapidly evolved from a peculiar novelty to one of the most popular supplements on the market for high-intensity athletes. With an exaggeratedly anabolic aminogram and particularly high in creatine, beef protein supplements do not contain lactose, making them the ideal product for people who want to support or build muscle tissue without fat.
Vegetable protein supplements: If we are particularly concerned about animal welfare and at the same time want to avoid milk consumption for personal health reasons, a vegetable protein supplement is the ideal choice in this regard. Through the combination of different plant protein sources, these supplements present a complete aminogram, just as we can find in other protein sources.
For anyone who suffers from lactose intolerance and practices some form of sports activity demanding at the same time, protein supplementation is always and in all circumstances an essential aspect of their eating habits. While taking away the groceries and milk protein supplements from our diet plan may make us meditate that we are going to be subjected to a huge restriction, the truth is that there are many other products we can choose from.
Egg proteins, beef and vegetable proteins do not contain lactose, so we can choose the most pleasant source or even combine them to achieve better results. An egg protein shake in the morning and a beef protein shake after training, for example, will give between fifty and eighty grams of protein to our diet and will hold us completely off lactose.