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Frequently Asked Questions
How do I know if my dairy sensitivity is lactose intolerance?
Your symptoms could be a result of many different conditions (e.g. Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS), Lactose Intolerance or Milk Allergy). There is a simple test that can help you determine if lactose from dairy is causing your discomfort. Follow this link to take the Dairy Digestion Test. Please note, if you aren´t sure how your digestive system will react, we recommend taking the test on the weekend or at a time when you plan to be mostly at home. If this test indicates you may be lactose intolerant, you should confirm the diagnosis with your doctor. If you are lactose intolerant, LACTAID® Family of Products can help you enjoy dairy without the discomfort.
What is lactose intolerance?
Lactose intolerance is the inability to digest a sugar called lactose that's found mainly in milk and dairy products. Normally, the small intestine produces an enzyme called lactase, which breaks down lactose into two simple sugars, glucose and galactose, that can be absorbed into the bloodstream. People whose bodies don’t make enough lactase can't fully digest lactose, causing mild to uncomfortable side effects.
Some people have a higher chance of being lactose intolerant. These groups include Hispanics, African Americans, Asians and people of Jewish descent. It also affects adults more than children, since the body produces less lactase enzyme as people age.
What are the symptoms of lactose intolerance?
Common signs and symptoms of lactose intolerance include:
- 1.Abdominal pain
These symptoms can be mild or severe depending on the amount of lactose consumed and the degree of lactase deficiency. Some people who produce small amounts of lactase may be able to tolerate small servings of dairy products and other foods containing lactose. Symptoms may appear anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours after eating dairy.
How is lactose intolerance diagnosed?
Lactose intolerance can be difficult to diagnose through symptoms alone, as similar symptoms may be caused by other conditions. The best way to confirm the condition is through specific tests ordered by your doctor. And if you don’t have lactose intolerance, testing can point to other conditions that may be causing discomfort.
The most common self-diagnosis test used to measure the absorption of lactose in the digestive system is the dairy digestion test. If this test indicates you may be lactose intolerant, you should confirm the diagnosis with your doctor. If desired, your doctor can administer a Hydrogen Breath Test to diagnose Lactose Intolerance.
How is lactose intolerance treated?
While there's no cure for lactose intolerance, it can be easily managed.
The best methods are to:
1. Be aware of what foods contain lactose. Note that some dairy foods are better tolerated than others, such as yogurt and other fermented dairy products, and hard, aged cheeses.
2. Use LACTAID® Brand products to fully enjoy the dairy products you love without the discomfort.
I have symptoms with some dairy foods, but not all of them. Why does this happen? Does this mean I’m not lactose intolerant if I don’t experience symptoms with all dairy foods?
The degree of lactase deficiency is different for everyone and so your sensitivity to each dairy food will be different. Some people who produce small amounts of lactase may be able to tolerate small servings of dairy products and other foods containing lactose.
Many people who are sensitive to dairy due to lactose can tolerate yogurt. The live cultures in yogurt can help break down the lactose. Foods like hard or aged cheeses – aged cheddar and swiss, for example – contain less lactose than milk, so they may be easier to tolerate.
The LACTAID® Brand also offers many lactose free products including milk, ice cream and cottage cheese, so you can still have the dairy foods you’ve always loved. To learn more about lactose levels is in your favorite foods, click here
With my sensitivity to dairy from lactose, what options do I have so I can enjoy dairy without discomfort?
The good news is that you do not have to avoid dairy. You can enjoy lactose free LACTAID® Milk, Ice Cream and Cottage Cheese, we’ve broken down the lactose so you can enjoy without a second thought.
We also offer LACTAID® Dietary Supplements to help you enjoy all the dairy foods you love anytime, anywhere. Supplements contain lactase, a natural enzyme that, when taken with your first bite of dairy, can help in the digestion of dairy products and prevent symptoms from developing in the first place.
How do you break down the lactose in your products?
LACTAID® Products contain lactase, a natural enzyme that helps break down lactose – the sugar found in dairy foods like milk, ice cream or cheese – into two simple sugars (galactose and glucose) that are easily digested. If not properly digested, lactose can cause gas, bloating, cramps, and/or diarrhea. LACTAID® Products can help people who have a sensitivity to dairy due to lactose digest dairy products without stomach discomfort.
How can I tell the difference between lactose intolerance and a milk allergy?
A milk allergy is often confused with lactose intolerance because some symptoms are similar. But the two conditions are very different. A milk allergy is a reaction by the immune system, but lactose intolerance affects the digestive system, when there’s an inadequate supply of the lactase enzyme to break down lactose.
A milk allergy occurs when the immune system doesn’t recognize one or more of the proteins in milk as being harmless, and reacts against them. The two main proteins in milk that are known to cause reactions are casein and whey. Casein and whey are also found in many processed foods. Infants are at a higher risk of suffering from a milk allergy, with around 2-3% of the world’s population being affected. Although symptoms can be serious, the good news is that most children outgrow a milk allergy by age two or three.
Lactose intolerance is the inability to digest a sugar called lactose that’s found mainly in milk and dairy products. Normally, the small intestine produces an enzyme called lactase, which breaks down lactose into two simple sugars, glucose and galactose, which can be absorbed into the bloodstream. People whose bodies don’t make enough lactase can’t fully digest lactose, causing mild to uncomfortable side effects.
Talk to your doctor to help you determine which condition you are experiencing and about finding the dietary approach that may work best for you.
How can I find out more about the products LACTAID® Brand offers?
The LACTAID® Brand has a range of products - from milk to ice cream and cottage cheese, and even supplements that help make the other dairy foods you love easy to digest.
Does LACTAID® Milk have all the nutrients of regular milk?
LACTAID® Milk is 100% real milk, just like any other milk brand. LACTAID® Milk contains all the nutrients found in regular milk – such as calcium, Vitamins A, D and B12, potassium, riboflavin and protein.
Will LACTAID® Milk taste like regular milk?
LACTAID® Milk tastes like other brands of milk, although some people find it to be slightly sweeter. This is because the lactose is already broken down into two other easily digested sugars, which are sweeter. LACTAID® Milk contains no added sugar.
I’m having difficulty finding LACTAID®, how can I find a store that carries it?
Have you tried out our product locator to locate LACTAID® Products in your area? Here is the link If you still didn’t see the LACTAID® Product you were searching for in the product locator, then the best thing to do is to ask your store manager so they can order the product. Retailers decide if they want to carry a product, and if so, how much they wish to order. They will often start carrying a product that they normally do not if their customers request it.
Does LACTAID® Milk contain genetically engineered bovine growth hormone (rbGH/rbST)?
No. LACTAID® Milk comes from cows not treated with artificial growth hormones (rbGH/rbST). No significant difference has been shown between milk derived from rBST-treated and non-rBST-treated cows.
Why is the expiration date on LACTAID® Milk later than other brands of milk?
LACTAID® Milk is ultra-pasteurized, a process which allows the milk to last longer under proper refrigeration. Ultra-pasteurization does not affect the taste or nutritional value of the milk. Once opened, LACTAID® Milk should be consumed within one week for the best taste, as with other brands of milk.
Why are some LACTAID® Milks calcium fortified?
All LACTAID® Milks have the calcium that you would expect from other regular milk brands. However, some LACTAID® Milk versions are calcium-fortified so that the daily requirement for calcium can be obtained with fewer glasses of milk. LACTAID® Calcium Fortified Milk contains a high-quality form of calcium (tribasic calcium phosphate).
Is it safe to take LACTAID® Dietary Supplements daily?
Yes. LACTAID® Dietary Supplements contain a natural lactase enzyme and have an excellent safety profile. They are digested with the foods they are taken with and do not stay in the body. LACTAID® Dietary Supplements should be taken according to package instructions.
Does it matter when I take the LACTAID® Dietary Supplements?
You should take LACTAID® Dietary Supplements with the first bite of dairy for maximum effectiveness. Taking it too soon before a meal, or too late after consuming dairy, reduces how well the lactase enzyme can interact with the lactose in your digestive system.
How often should LACTAID® Dietary Supplements be used?
LACTAID® Dietary Supplements should be used every time dairy foods are eaten. They can be taken every day with every meal and should be eaten with your first bite of dairy. If necessary, you may take 2 supplements. If you continue to eat foods containing dairy after 30–45 minutes, take another supplement.
How many LACTAID® Dietary Supplements can I take in one day?
LACTAID® Dietary Supplements may be used every time you eat foods containing dairy. LACTAID® Dietary Supplements can be used with every meal and snack, every day.
How do I know how many LACTAID® Dietary Supplements I should take for each food I eat or drink?
Depending on the food you are eating and its level of lactose, coupled with your sensitivity to lactose, you will need to take one or two supplements with your first bite of dairy. If you continue to eat foods containing dairy after 30-45 minutes, we recommend you take another supplement.
Can children use LACTAID® Dietary Supplements?
Children 4 and older may use them every day, whenever they eat any dairy foods.
Are LACTAID® Dietary Supplements natural?
LACTAID® Dietary Supplements contain a natural lactase enzyme that works naturally with your body.
Are LACTAID® Products kosher?
All LACTAID® Products are kosher certified by the Orthodox Union and can be used year round, except during Passover.
Do LACTAID® Products contain gluten?
Most LACTAID® Products do not contain gluten. The only product that does contain gluten is LACTAID® Cookies & Cream Ice Cream.
Can LACTAID® Products be used when pregnant or nursing?
LACTAID® Products may be used by anyone who has difficulty digesting the lactose in dairy foods. Pregnant or nursing women should always discuss diet, including dairy foods, with their doctor.
Can I cook and bake with LACTAID® Milk?
Absolutely! LACTAID® Milk is real milk, so it can be used for both cooking and baking. For recipe ideas, check out the LACTAID®Recipe Collection.
When I’m out with my friends or family and want to eat a meal with dairy, what can I do to prevent my symptoms?
With LACTAID® Dietary Supplements you can enjoy dairy anytime, anywhere. Keep them with you when you’re on the go and you will be ready to eat any meal with dairy while you’re out. LACTAID® Dietary Supplements can be taken every day with every meal and should be eaten with your first bite of dairy.
I see that LACTAID® Brand has Ice Cream & Cottage Cheese and I would love to try it. When I use the Product Locator, there aren’t any stores in my area that carry it. How can I purchase it?
If you tried the Product Locator and you still didn’t see the LACTAID® Product you were searching for, then the best thing to do is to ask your store manager so they can order the product. Retailers decide if they want to carry a product, and if so, how much they wish to order. They will often start carrying a product that they normally do not if their customers request it.
Can LACTAID® Milk be frozen?
You can freeze LACTAID® Milk however we do not recommend it. Ice crystals formed during the freezing process can change components of the milk which may result in separation. Freezing and thawing the milk can also damage the package and reduce the shelf life. However, it will not affect the nutritional value.
If you do decide to freeze LACTAID® Milk, thaw it slowly in the refrigerator (about 48 hours per quart). Shake thoroughly after freeze/thaw.
I'm having difficulty finding LACTAID™ Yogurt at the store. Do you know where I could find this product?
We are sorry to inform you that this product has been discontinued. We want to assure you that this discontinuation only affects LACTAID™ Yogurt, and we continue to offer all of our other 100% lactose free dairy products. Please check our "Where to Buy" page to find LACTAID® Dairy Products near you!
I buy LACTAID® 70% Lactose Free Milk, but cannot seem to find it at my store anymore. Do you know where I could find this product?
We are sorry to inform you that this product has been discontinued. We want to assure you that this discontinuation only affects LACTAID® Lowfat 70% Lactose Free Milk, and we still offer 100% lactose free LACTAID® Lowfat Milk. Please check our "Where to Buy" page to find 100% lactose free LACTAID® Lowfat Milk at a retailer near you.