The Lactose Intolerance Clearinghouse Has Moved.

My old website can be found at www.stevecarper.com/li I am no longer updating the site, so there will be dead links. The static information provided by me is still sound.

For quick offline reference, you can purchase Planet Lactose: The Best of the Blog as an ebook on Smashwords.com or Amazon.com or BarnesandNoble.com or a whole lot of other places that Smashwords is suppose to distribute the book to. Almost 100,000 words on LI, allergies, milk products, milk-free products, and the genetics of intolerance, along with large helpings of the weirdness that is the Net.

I suffer the universal malady of spam and adbots, so I moderate comments here. That may mean you'll see a long lag before I remember to check the site and approve them. Despite the gap, you'll always get your say. I read every single one, and every legitimate one gets posted.


Monday, June 27, 2005

Lactagen - Questions, No Answers

I get more questions about Lactagen than any other single topic these days. Somebody is doing a remarkable job of marketing and promotion.

Lactagen claims to be a cure for lactose intolerance. That's right: a cure. Take the product for 38 days and you'll never be bothered by lactose again. [UPDATE: Lactagen no longer uses the word “cure” in its marketing. Its website information has also changed since this was originally posted.]

Lactagen's™ one-time 38-day patent-pending formula allows the gradual and painless re-introduction of dairy into the digestive system. The program painlessly trains the body to be able to digest dairy products without the usual painful reactions. The combination of taking yogurt with live cultures, having meals with the formula, taking specific dosages and with the combination of Lactose, Tricalcium Phosphate, Lactobacillus Acidophilus, FOS and Cellulose Gum and Silica, the body learns how to digest dairy products.


On the surface, Lactagen doesn't appear to be very different from other acidophilus products aimed at those with LI, such as DairyCare (my website page / DairyCare homepage) or Digestive Advantage (my website page/ Digestive Advantage homepage). What hits my eyeballs with fireworks is the claim of a permanent cure.

How can this possibly work? Here's my speculation.

There are two sources in the body for the symptoms of lactose intolerance. Undigested lactose pulls water into the intestines, creating possible diarrhea. And that undigested lactose can be fermented in the colon by the bacteria that naturally live there, producing the gases that can cause bloating, cramps, and flatulence.

But other types of bacteria actually digest the lactose. These types include Lactobacillus acidophilus as well as the bacterial cultures that are used in yogurt. If you have yogurt regularly you can push out the "bad" bacteria and colonize the "good" bacteria in their place. Result: greatly diminished symptoms if you eat or drink any lactose.

Lactagen seems to use the same effect. Here's how the site describes the regimen:
Step 1: Starting Lactagen™
Starting the program is simple. Most importantly the program is specifically set-up to minimize any lactose intolerant symptoms which might occur. Dissolve the Lactagen™ patent-pending proprietary blend in 4 to 6 ounces of water and drink it with your meals. After the proprietary blend is dissolved, the product turns clear and tastes a little sweet. Consume yogurt (with "live cultures") during the first three days to supplement the blend. We recommend not eating any dairy products during the six weeks unless specifically stated in the protocol.

Step 2: The Lactagen™ Program
Lactagen™ is taken with dinner for 18 days, and then with breakfast and dinner for another 16 days. On the final 4 days, milk and then other dairy products are re-introduced into the diet. The complete Lactagen™ process takes 38 days. A full transition to dairy products begins on day 39. Individuals are then free to eat whatever dairy they desire - symptom free!

Step 3: Follow up to the Lactagen™ Process
After completing all 38 days, start slowly re-introducing dairy products into your diet. There will be no need for lactase supplement pills or further use of Lactagen™. For the next six to eight weeks, you should have a healthy serving of dairy on a weekly basis. It is important to continue having dairy periodically to maintain tolerance.


There's no reason this shouldn't work. My big question, though, is very simple: wouldn't this work exactly as well just by eating yogurt and skipping the Lactagen?

This is a very big question, because - as you might expect of a product that claims you only need to take it once and be cured forever - it costs a lot of money. $149.95, to be exact, as of March 2009. Not including possible tax and shipping.

For a true cure, of course, this is a trifling amount. A few bottles of lactase will run you this much in not too long a time.

If you want to order, you can call 1- 888-DAIRY-OK (888-324-7965) or order through the link on their home page.

For more info, email them at questions@lactagen.com.

And if you do go through the whole 38-day program, please let me know all the details by emailing me at stevecarper@cs.com.

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7 comments:

taremi said...

Steve,
Hi! This is very interesting... it's about time someone came up with a possible cure for LI, or at least a very good try.
I hope a cure will eventually come about... my LI boyfriend and I have almost given up... its not a life threatening condition, so its not on many people's priority list. I'm glad Lactagen will give hope to many people that LI may be curable!!
I hope a day comes where my boyfriend and I can eat the same food without him worrying about the consequences!
By the way, Digestive Advantage is working miracles on my boyfriend! Although he has severe LI, he was able to eat his sister's wedding cake the other day, and also camanbert cheese, breads with milk powder, etc. He was VERY happy. Thanks Steve for letting us know about a wonderful product. For now, he is only taking DA on the weekends (and few days in advance) because it is a bit pricey, and we live in Canada so shipping costs can get expensive.
Thanks again! And bravo to such a great website!!

Steve Carper said...

"Cure" is a loaded word, and one I really wish Lactagen wouldn't use.

You can't cure LI: it's an innate part of your genetic inheritance.

You can get symptom relief, though, and that can extend for as long as you keep the good bacteria sitting in your colon. That's why you need to continue using Digestive Advantage and why you need to keep eating yogurt even after you finish your 38 days with Lactagen.

Symptom relief is a wonderful, terrific, life-changing thing. I can see how people might look at it as a cure.

The difference is that if you stop treating the problem, the symptoms will reappear. You can make them go away again, but a cure that's not.

Anonymous said...

Steve, could a person get too much of the acidophillus? I'm on the very last days of the Lactagen program and am hoping that it will work as well for me as for the others (I'm hoping they're not all relatives of the creator of Lactagen and I haven't been duped!). If I start taking Digestive Advantage and eat yogurt regularily, could there be problems? I tried Digestive Advantage about a year ago and found no difference in my LI at all, so quit after 2 or 3 boxes of it. Thanks.

Esmeralda said...

I do not recommand Lactagen, I never received the product. I waited over two weeks, and nothing. Called their customer service number, they stated my local post office had it. So I contacted the post office and they did not have anything for me. I contacted their customer service number again and they where not very helpful and even seemed annoyed that I would want to cancel. They wanted to try sending the product again. I finally contacted my banking institution to have my money refunded. This company is a gimmick.

Anonymous said...

Steve,

I tried Lactagen 10 months ago with the hope of finally finding a cure Ll, I followed program exactly the why I was suppose to and made it to the last week of the program, but all the while I was having extreme stomach cramps,lower back aches. I was rushed to the ER, this product made me worst, this product is a total RIP-OFF!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

I just completed the 38 day Lactagen program and after 18 years of suffering severe LI, I was able to eat pizza last night without taking an enzyme and had zero LI symptoms!

Anonymous said...

I got duped into paying for this Lactagen stuff 2 years ago... I've had LI since 1988, after a surgery that removed part of my intestines. I never ordered the stuff, my mother did, and I got stuck paying the $140 I didn't have, after having lost my job, for it. I went through the program for all 38 days and ended up backing up (as per their directions) once. Ended up not having enough powder for the last day or 2, don't quite remember. This stuff is a joke. I gave up on all dairy (which I shouldn't really do thanks to a calcium deficiency) for a month and a half and still end up running to the bathroom every now and then, sometimes a dozen times per day. I STRONGLY recommend to those looking at this stuff to spend your $140 elsewhere. And I don't hold much hope for the new stuff that company is coming out with, either. I wouldn't have been so ticked about the money if the stuff had actually worked, which it obviously didn't. (Don't blame my missing parts... I am perfectly capable of being fine on occasion, sometimes for a couple weeks at a time)