Lactose Intolerant? Or are You?

The term “intolerance” is thrown around all to easily in this day & age, and as a trainer & nutrition coach, I hear it on a more than regular basis.
I am not saying I disbelieve anyone that says they are intolerant to something, I mean we all know how we react to something and how it makes us feel, but does this make it an official “intolerance”?

You may have read my blog about how things changed for me when I removed milk from my diet, if not, here’s a link: How cutting out Milk changed everything!
Despite how things improved for me, I am not intolerant to Milk… yes, I get bloated, and I sometimes get a dodgy stomach, but it is NOT the milk doing it!
In fact, I am not intolerant to dairy either, even though I have certain reactions to cheese and some yoghurts.

I could label it as an intolerance, but I choose not to. Because, well, because it’s not true.
So if I am not intolerant, why do I react? And why has it only recently become a problem?


I do not know the full scientific truth here, and I am only making educated assumptions based on my nutrition knowledge and understanding, and the understanding of how my body reacts.
So although I offer this as potential advice, remember, I am not a medical professional, I have not had blood tests to confirm what I am saying, and I am not suggesting that this is what may be occurring in your situation. That is for you to decide.
Lactose Intolerance

I have read a lot about lactose intolerance of late, trying to establish if this is what I am. Firstly, I considered the symptoms, which are:

  • Abdominal bloating, pain, or cramps.
  • Borborygmi (rumbling or gurgling sounds in the stomach) – who knew it was called that???
  • Diarrhea.
  • Flatulence, or gas.
  • Nausea, which may be accompanied by vomiting.

I have consumed milk all of my life and it has only been since removing milk that I noticed that I did not feel as bloated or crampy. As you will see from my How cutting out Milk changed everything! blog, I actually removed milk from my tea and coffee to combat the symptoms of Endometriosis, NOT to help reduce bloating.
So, in truth, it could never have been THAT bad.
Milk Protein Reaction

This all got me to thinking, with all of the hormones pumped into dairy cows, has their been a change in some kind of protein synthesis within the cows?
And could this transfer to their milk??
It’s a BIG question, and without costly laboratory testing, something I cannot prove, nor disprove.
But it is certainly possible that the hormone injection in cows & beef, COULD have repercussions.

Just this past weekend, I enjoyed a delicious Chilli… It is one of my favourite meals!
I ALWAYS add cheese to my Chilli, and more recently, I have only been having Feta cheese. But this weekend, we opted for some good old fashioned English Cheddar melted in to the beefy, meaty, mincy, beany goodness that was the chilli.

Within a short space of time, following this meal, my nose started to itch incessantly, it was driving me crazy (and my hubby *sniff sniff*). Then it started running, then the sneezing started, my eyes started watering and I had a painfully annoying tickle in my throat that was making me cough.


It felt like I had hay fever… But let’s not be silly here, it is February. It is Minus three outside and NOTHING is even close to spraying its pollen all over me just yet. So it certainly wasn’t hay fever.
But it was definitely a reaction to something!

I will be honest, I have suffered these allergy outbreaks for years, I’m talking maybe 15 years, and I have ALWAYS put it down to dust allergies or the formerly mentioned hay fever. Maybe after all this time, I was wrong though!

Last night, I woke up at 3.30am, normally it is my super cute chihuahua that wakes me up at this time of night, but on this occasion, it was my nose itching and a series of sneezes, which I tried desperately to stifle to avoid waking up the hubby!

Once I had this under control, or at least as under control as I could, I reached for my mobile phone (not something that I advise you to do if you wake up at this hour, but a thought entered my he’d and I needed to quash it).

I was putting together a timeline in my head, a series of events that lead to me sniffing and sneezing throughout Saturday night, all of Sunday and well into the early hours of Monday morning.
Something smells a bit off here?!

I know that I am not allergic or even slightly reactive to Whey protein, I drink whey protein shakes regularly with no issues, and have done for years. BUT maybe there is something else in dairy that I am allergic or sensitive to?
I googled the symptoms of Casein Sensitivity or mild allergy? (Casein is the other milk protein, more commonly know as the Curd, as in Curds & Whey!)


Curds & Whey
The typical symptoms include:

  • Nasal congestion,
  • sneezing,
  • runny nose,
  • itchy eyes,
  • coughing and/ or wheezing
  • Bloating
  • Gas and/or flatulence
  • Loose stools, Diarrhoea and/or constipation

My symptoms always include both a congested and runny nose at the same time (its very confusing), a persistent itchy nose, watering eyes, sneezing, coughing, bloating, gas and occasional changes in stools.

So basically, I have a sensitivity or mild allergic reaction to Casein, NOT MILK OR CHEESE OR LACTOSE!
But the protein within it, that may, or may not have been altered by modern methods to increase milk production in cows.

This further proves my theory that we are not intolerant to food, but the man made manipulations that have increased in our foods!
How had I not seen this before?

Like I said above, I have mainly been eating Greek Feta Cheese and Greek yoghurt for the past 12-18 months, and if it is genuinely Greek, then it is made from Goat or Sheeps milk, or a combination of the two. These are quite different to that of the cows milk.

In fact, goats milk is scarily similar to that of human milk.

Could Goats Milk Be my Saviour?

More to the point, thanks to my researching on the inter-web, I now know that if you are reactive to cows milk, it is most likely to be the “s1 Alpha Casein” that you are reacting to. This is found in high levels in cows milk.

The levels of this same gene of casein (s1 Alpha) is approximately 89% lower in goats milk, making it a far less allergenic product.
There have even been studies conducted in the USA, where they found that nearly 93% of infants allergic to cows milk, could consume goats milk with virtually NO side effects.

You can also read my blog all about Goats milk here: Could Goats Milk Be Out Saviour?Could Goats Milk Be Out Saviour?

So I ask you, are you lactose intolerant or are you sensitive, reactive or allergic to the protein compounds or something else within milk, and other dairy products?

It is a very sensible question to ask yourself, and explore further. Establishing this simple difference could completely transform not only your diet, but how you feel too.

Food for thought as they say!


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