Is your child Lactose Intolerant?

Any type of indigestion issues can take away comfort from your child. If it happens often, it can lesson your child’s body’s ability to absorb nutrients and interrupt growth. Does your child suffer from excessive gassiness, bloating, irritability, unable to keep food down, have constipation or even diarrhea? All these symptoms could be the result of intolerance to lactose. Therefore, finding out if it is an allergy or an intolerance and providing the right kind of treatment. Usually changes in the food they eat to changing the type of milk with grow up milk alternatives (eg. Similac Total Comfort) to prevent intolerance issues and help your child enjoy life.1, 2, 3, 4, 5

 

Lactose vs. Lactase

Lactase is an enzyme, and it breaks down lactose, which is a sugar found in milk products (eg. Milk, Lactose, Whey, Curds, Milk by-products, Dry milk solids, Nonfat dry milk powder). It is when people’s bodies, including children, who do not make enough lactase to digest milk proteins that causes “lactose intolerance”. Lactose is a type of sugar that is found in a lot of animal milk products like cheeses, yogurts, breads, cereals, conventional whey mixes, and some canned foods. Considering this product versatility, it is in a lot of your child’s favorite foods. This sugar is broken down by lactase enzymes in the small intestines into simpler forms like glucose and galactose and goes on to be absorbed.1

 

Allergy or intolerant?

The main difference between an allergic reaction to an intolerance is that symptoms of allergies show up immediately. An allergy is caused by the body’s immune system having a negative reaction to proteins in milk. This type of issue can potentially cause major health side effects like anaphylaxis. If your child breaks out in hives, trouble breathing, swelling of the face, itching of the face, and vomiting after a milk product, then they are possibly having an allergic reaction. Lactose Intolerance can take some time to show up, usually within 24 hours. Also, intolerances can develop later in life, even if your child did not have it before. Intolerances to milks are caused by lactase enzymes in the gut decreasing. Severity depends on the quantity consumed and tolerance level. Symptoms of intolerances can range from irritability, nausea, stomach aches, bloating (hard tummy area is an easy way to tell), excessive gas passing, foul soft stools, and diarrhea.2, 3 

 

How do I provide comfort?

If intolerances are not taken care of, it can cause some feeding issues and affect your child’s overall health. With the process of elimination, remove the food item from your child’s diet. This process may take some time with careful monitoring. If symptoms improve, with guidance from a pediatrician, try introducing the items back in their diet to see if symptoms return. If you are worried that your child may not be getting enough protein and calcium because of a cow milk diet, no need to worry. Your child can get calcium from dark green leafy vegetables like spinach, broccoli and kale, nuts (almonds), beans (white beans), fish (sardines, salmon) and calcium-fortified drinks. Soy and almond products are also rich in protein, which is an alternative for meat or milk-based proteins.4, 5

 

But as children are, soy and almond based milk alternatives can have a flavor they are not a fan of. For this, parents have to look for appropriate growing up milk alternatives that have prebiotic fibers for gut health and other essential nutrients for overall health. For example, Similac Total Comfort is lactose free, has easy to digest proteins, prebiotics, vitamins, and minerals to support a child’s digestive system and reduce allergy risks. Similac Total Comfort stage 3 with Tummy care Nutritional System contains prebiotics (FOS), partially hydrolyzed 100% whey protein, very low lactose, unique vegetable fat blend. Similac Total Comfort Stage 3 which is 98% lactose free and no palm oil for better nutrients absorption and softer stool.6.7  Visit Similac Myanmar for more information and request samples to see if it will work for your child.4, 5