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2018-19 Eat Smart. Play Hard Magazine

2018-19 Magazine

2018-19 Eat Smart. Play Hard. Magazine

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I think my daughter might have lactose intolerance. What are the symptoms? What can she have as a calcium source?

Lactose intolerance is caused by a lack of lactase, an enzyme that digests lactose (the sugar in milk) in our body’s digestive system.

Lactose intolerance is caused by a lack of lactase, an enzyme that digests lactose (the sugar in milk) in our body’s digestive system. If your daughter has lactose intolerance, she might experience bloating, gas, cramps or diarrhea after consuming more than a cup of milk (12 grams of lactose).

Dairy products are good sources of calcium, which is an important nutrient for bone health. Your daughter would tolerate small servings of dairy products (up to ½ cup of milk) with a meal, aged cheese or yogurt without experiencing bloating, gas, cramps or diarrhea. Additionally, she can tolerate Lactaid milk (lactase-added milk) or she can add lactase tables to dairy products before consuming them.

The followings are alternate sources of calcium:

  • Lactose-free milk
  • Calcium-fortified soymilk, rice milk, almond milk and juices
  • Calcium-fortified breakfast cereals and breads
  • Dark green vegetables such as collard greens, turnips, mustard greens, broccoli, spinach, kale
  • Canned fish such as sardines or salmon with bones
  • Clams
  • Oysters
  • Tofu (prepared with calcium sulfate)
  • Legumes
  • Dried fruits

Yeong Rhee, Ph.D., R.D., Department Head and Professor, NDSU Department of Health, Nutrition and Exercise Sciences

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