Monday, January 21, 2008

Lactose Intolerance

Any frequent reader of my blog knows that I'm dealing with some major bloating and water retention these days. I have talked to three trainers from the gym, and got these viewpoints (some of which a few of you pointed out).

Trainer #1: Matt (my trainer)
My monthly is coming up, and I'm usually bloated the week prior. We'll start worrying about it after my period. (Sorry to any guy readers...too much information for y'all.)

Trainer #2: Brian (Matt's boss)
Salt intake was slightly higher the week prior due to being sick. I was eating a lot of canned soup. High sodium diets makes most people retain water.
He also inquired if my water consumption was low, and for the most part, it hasn't been. I've been drinking about a gallon per day. Water should flush the toxins out.

Trainer #3: Stephanie (a master trainer)
She also inquired about my water consumption. We also discussed sodium intake and my monthly cycle (I know Matt hates talking about it).
She mentioned that when she drinks milk she gets bloated because she's lactose intolerant. It was interesting that she mentioned this because that is something I increased since the new year - drinking milk to get my calcium (see goals).

What is lactose intolerance?
Lactose intolerance is an inability to digest and absorb lactose (the sugar in milk) that results in gastrointestinal symptoms when milk is drunk or products containing milk are drunk or eaten. (

The problem underlying lactose intolerance is a lack of lactase - an enzyme produced by the lining of your small intestine. Lactase breaks down lactose so that it can be absorbed into your bloodstream. A deficiency of lactase leads to problems in breaking down and absorbing milk sugar (

What are the symptoms of lactose intolerance?
1. Diarrhea
2. Nausea
3. Abdominal cramps
4. Bloating
5. Gas (both types)

Do you have to completely stay away from milk and milk products?
Not necessarily. Most people who are lactose intolerant can tolerate small or even moderate amounts of lactose. It often takes only elimination of the major milk-containing products to obtain sufficient relief from their symptoms. (

Seeing that I am experiencing cramps, bloating, and gas after drinking milk, I'm wondering if my stomach cannot tolerate milk. I will have to wait until my monthly is over to start experimenting to see if I may be lactose intolerant to some milk/milk products. I'll keep everybody posted!

Resources used:
Wrong Diagnosis
Medline Plus
Mayo Clinic


Felicia said...

Hi ya!!

Hope you find out what the problem is. I am sure whatever it is you will be able to handle it and feel better really soon. If it is Lactose Intolerance at least you have many many options on how to treat it.

Have a SUPER week!!

Hanlie said...

The best way to treat lactose intolerance is to stay away from dairy! I'm severely lactose intolerant, so I know how it feels. And if you do discontinue dairy, you'll find that your sinuses and a whole host of mucus problems just clear up at the same time. Works like a charm!

Heather said...

oh thank god I am not lactose intolerant..I love my dairy!! I cant go a day without cheese.

Julia said...

I hope you nut out what is bothering your system soon, being bloated sucks when you are trying to loose weight!!!

Being intolerant to dairy is really common – so if it is that, you aren’t alone!

While I can have a little bit of dairy if I have too much it plays HAVOC on my digestive system. I cut out dairy last year and it made a huge difference to my health!