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How is lactose intolerance treated?

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Quick Answer

As of September 2015, there is no proper treatment for lactose intolerance, as there is no way to make the body produce more of the lactase enzyme. However, individuals can take steps to manage the symptoms of their lactose intolerance by limiting consumption of dairy, using reduced-lactose dairy products, ingesting probiotics, experimenting with different types of dairy or taking lactase supplements, although these are not guaranteed to be effective, according to Mayo Clinic.

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How is lactose intolerance treated?
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Full Answer

Lactose intolerance occurs when an individual's digestive system cannot process lactose, a type of sugar found in milk. This is usually because the body has a deficiency of lactase, an enzyme that helps break down lactose so it can be absorbed through the lining of the small intestine. Instead, unabsorbed lactose moves into the colon, where it creates symptoms. Symptoms of lactose intolerance present themselves after dairy consumption, and may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, cramps, bloating and gas, explains Mayo Clinic.

Individuals can have one of three types of lactose intolerance. Primary lactose intolerance occurs naturally, with lactase production falling off after being at its peak during infancy. Secondary lactose intolerance occurs as a result of a disease or treatment for a disease, and congenital lactose intolerance is present from birth, notes Mayo Clinic.

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