Lactose Intolerance in Houston, TX
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What is lactose intolerance?
Lactose intolerance is an extremely common condition in the United States. Lactose is in milk and additional dairy products. Your body could be "intolerant" of lactose because it won't generate an adequate amount of the enzyme lactase to break down lactose.
Lactase is a digestive enzyme created in the small intestine that helps the body digest lactose. Lactose intolerance is not a life-threatening condition, but it can cause bothersome symptoms depending on your body's level of intolerance. Some people reference lactose intolerance as a milk allergy.
If you or a family member need assistance with lactose intolerance in Houston, TX, our gastrointestinal specialists can help. Request a consultation at Gastroenterology Consultants and let our experience and expertise guide you in a positive path toward a better life.
What causes lactose intolerance?
Lactose intolerance occurs because the body is not able to produce any (or enough) of the lactase needed to process lactose. A couple of the main reasons why the body might be unable to develop enough lactase to assist break apart lactose are explained below:
Primary Lactose Intolerance
Primary lactose intolerance is the more common kind of lactose intolerance and is caused by age. As you age, the less lactase your body develops. This form of lactose intolerance may partially get passed through genetics and develops in certain individuals to a greater extent than others. As reported by the food intolerance network, lactose intolerance impacts 5 – 17% of Europeans, around 44% of Americans, about 50% of Latino/Hispanic people, and 60 – 80% of Asians and Africans.
Secondary Lactose Intolerance
Secondary lactose deficiency mostly occurs when the duodenum is damaged due to an illness, trauma, surgery, or more serious condition like Crohn's disease or celiac disease. This is due to the production of lactase slows when the duodenum is inflamed. Treatment of the condition could restore the purpose of the duodenum (small intestine) and reinstate lactase levels to their typical nature.
To request more information about lactose intolerance, connect with a Gastroenterology Consultants location near you to request an appointment with a GI specialist who treats the condition. Our GI team will give professional tips and information on how to best treat lactose intolerance.
What are the signs of lactose intolerance?
The symptoms of lactose intolerance can fluctuate for every person according to the level of lactase they are able to yield. Some of the general signs of lactose intolerance are:
- Abdominal cramps
- Bloating or fullness
- Intermittent constipation
Should you have any of the described symptoms above, our gastroenterologist providers in Houston, TX can help to identify an approach that works the best for your digestive health.
How is lactose intolerance treated?
Generally speaking, the best thing to do if you are lactose intolerant is to avoid dairy goods completely. There is presently no possible way to advance lactase output in the body. As a result, the focus of treatment is to keep you from encountering the discomfort that may result from consuming lactose. If you consider lactose intolerance as a dairy allergy, that might help guide you in the decisions you make.
Additional solutions and answers for living with lactose intolerance that our Houston, TX GI providers can propose involve:
- Lactase enzyme supplements
- Probiotics and prebiotics
- Include tiny servings of dairy goods into your meals to build tolerance
- Ingest lactose-reduced dairy products
Ease your symptoms with skilled care
If you are struggling with lactose intolerance and need help managing your symptoms, let the well-informed gastrointestinal specialists at Gastroenterology Consultants to step in with solutions. We can craft a treatment plan to help you regain your well-being so that you may carry on doing the things you enjoy. To get treatment for lactose intolerance in Houston, TX, please contact us today to request a consultation.
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