The Lactose Intolerance Clearinghouse Has Moved.

My old website can be found at 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 or or 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.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

Answers to Questions from Readers, part 14

Q. Can lactose intolerance in children cause behavioral problems in children if left undetected?

Only two small possible problems. Truly undetected LI may result in your child's having what is politely called "anal leakage." Once you know about LI, however, you should be able to avoid this by either keeping your child away from large amounts of milk or by making sure you keep lactase pills available at all times. If children do stay away from milk, there is always the "different child" syndrome, in which they dislike not being like everybody else. This is usually not a major problem; children with milk allergies, who must be many times more cautious about milk than anyone with LI, soon learn how to cope.

Q. It seems that I can't digest anything high in carbohydrates without extreme LI symptoms. Is there lactose in spaghetti? potatoes? biscuits? bread? cake?

There can be - and most likely is - lactose in biscuits, breads, and cake, (although definitely not in spaghetti and potatoes unless it's added in cooking) but that's probably totally besides the point. Lactose and most other carbohydrates share one trait in common: they must be broken down into simpler sugars by digestive enzymes. Usually the lactase enzyme that digests lactose is the only one missing, but that does not have to be the case. And in fact the inability to digest carbohydrates may be an indication of a more serious underlying problem. I would advise you to talk to your doctor about this and see if testing needs to be done.

Q. Is "Lecithin" a lactose milk product? It seems as if it is derived from a Latin root word for milk, and therefore I am afraid to eat anything containing it without taking a lactase tablet.

My dictionary shows it as coming from the Greek for egg yolk, which is quite correct. It has nothing to do with milk.

Q. I keep seeing ingredients like malted barley, malted this and malted that. I used to drink malts and malted milk when I was young. Is there any kind of milk in "malt"?

The only milk in malted milk is in the milk. Any malt by itself should be milk-free. And "malted" barley or any grain merely means sprouted grain.

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