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Oh Lactose how I hate you!


Cassu
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Edit: this is also why I refuse to be Mace/OC Spray trained at work. I have no idea how closely related the stuff in onions is related to it, and I'm not taking any chances. I'd rather be Tasered, thank you.

 

Pepper spray is capsaicin, the active ingredient in ... wait for it ... chili peppers. ^_^ If you can tolerate them, you should be OK with pepper spray. (For some value of "OK" that involves horribly burning eyes and skin.)

 

Mace is CN, which looks a bit more toxic than I'd like to deal with -- possible permanent contact dermatitis among other side effects. I've done tear gas (CS) training, which I found unpleasant but not impossible (even though I'm asthmatic).

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I work in the food industry, in the product development end of it. If there are any technical questions, please feel free to ask.

That said, in a way you are lucky its an allergy to milk, not to lots of other things as milk is required to be declared in all food sold in Australia - its one of the "big" allergens.

If there is milk anywhere in the product, it will be declared, so you will be able to make a choice knowing it is in there.

If flying (on flights where there are meals involved) contact the airline beforehand, you can arrange a "special" meal to fit your dietry requirements.

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I tried vanilla flavored Almond Milk one time (I went back for more :angry: but the store had ceased stocking it).

 

That stuff was really good poured over breakfast cereal !!

I endorse it for that specific purpose to anyone, whatever their lactose capability is.

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Back in the Middle Ages when I was a student we had to make our own almond milk from scratch, grinding fresh almonds, soaking them in water, and squeezing the results out. You couldn't just get cartons of it at the supermarket.

 

... Actually that's because I was in a Middle Ages reenactment group. We would have been thrilled to be able to buy almond milk off the shelf, it was such a common medieval ingredient.

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Something to consider - many times digestive illnesses and intolerances are stress related or stress can be a factor in how bad they affect you.

 

About 20+ years ago, I was having some serious digestive problems. Initial diagnosis ran the gamut, including lactose intolerance, food allergies, etc. It took about 2-3 years before I finally got a conclusive diagnosis that I had ulcerative colitis (basically, ulcers of the colon). I then spent the next 4-5 years on various treatments trying to deal with it. Some were more successful than others, but basically, I had a serious medical condition that I have to live with. My diet was seriously restricted, I had to watch how much of things like lactose and high fiber I took in. It sucked.

 

And then something strange happened.

 

I got a divorce.

 

As a part of the divorce, what started out as couples therapy to save our marriage morphed into individual therapy sessions to help me cope with the end of my marriage. But those first six sessions of therapy and stress management did more to alleviate my colitis symptoms than years of medicines, special diets and treatment regimes ever did. After my divorce was over, and I didn't have to deal with my ex-wife, I realized just how much she stressed me out.

 

Now, I'm not suggesting that you go out and get a divorce to alleviate your symptoms. The important lesson here is that learning how to recognize and deal with your stress - especially if you don't realize you're actually stressing - can help a lot. I've been relatively symptom free for the last 14 years, and when the symptoms start to return, it serves to remind me that I'm not dealing with stress well. I know that if I examine things, and take care of the stressors as best I can, the symptoms go away.

 

If you haven't sought that route, it's worth a shot. If it doesn't work for you, you've lost nothing, but if it does, you'll gain a lot of your life back.

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Something else to keep in mind is that if you've been on a lot of antibiotics your ability to digest milk products will be severely affected. Probiotic supplements (or yoghurt) might help you out. But each individual is different, so really it' a process of discovering what's affecting your body and what foods agree with you. (It does rather suck, though.)

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probiotics in yogurt are, frankly, just not enough. Sure they are there, but the amount that survive to get into your insides requires you to eat an insane amount. For them to do any good, pill form is the best. I learned this while my friend went through colon surgery here almost two months back now. That said, greek yogurt has become a steady part of his diet, but it needed supplements

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I've also discovered that I'm probably lactose intolerant. Still need to get it checked out by a doctor, but given that everything improved when I stopped having regular milk on my cereal I'd say it's a safe bet.

 

I've now changed to almond milk, which I find is really tasty, causes no problems, and is far lower in calories. Plus I prefer the unsweetened version so my teeth stay happy too.

My bf is also slightly intolerant. He can cope with the lactose free milk on his cereal, where that is too much for me. I do use it in coffee and scrambled eggs though. Almond milk does not work in hot drinks :( Although it's great for a milky iced coffee where the main volume of liquid is the milk.

 

And I switched to sorbet instead of ice cream. Still having issues with giving up cheesecake. It's my favourite dessert.

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L. Acidolphilus is (usually) the active cultures in yogurt. It is often available in pill or liquid form (and occasionally, in powder form).

 

I am sometimes lactose intolerant, mostly when I haven't ingested any dairy in a few weeks. Fortunately for me, my body begins to create the enzyme necessary to break down lactose (lactase) within a day or two (so I usually only have one unpleasant day/evening).

 

As kristof said, check other issues (celiac, IBS, recent intestinal surgery, stress) that may contribute to dietary problems.

 

Almond milk (and to a lesser extent, soy milk) is great! I only wish it could be thicker, like whole milk. :(

-Dave

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