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.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

An Unanswered Question May Be Answered

Tucked away in a far back corner of my website, Steve Carper's Lactose Intolerance Clearinghouse is a page that I forgot I had. Well, we don't like to forget our failures, do we? It was called Questions Even I Couldn't Answer.

I'm not alone. Columnists from Dear Abby to Dan Savage pile up questions that are so off the wall that no good answer is possible. A fun column can always be had on a slow day by simply reprinting them.

Like I said, I had almost forgotten about the page until I came across a newspaper article that triggered an inch in my head. Wasn't I asked a question something like this once? Turns out I had. Here was the original question.

Q. I have noticed over the years that the severity of my LI waxes and wanes with the amount of physical activity I do. I recently started working out 4-5 days a week and noticed about a week or so afterward that the LI was "gone". I also noticed this several years ago when I was cycling about 20-25 miles a day for 4-5 days a week. Have there been any studies linking physical activity to a significant reduction in LI?

My original answer had to be, no. Nobody's ever done a study to see if anything outside normal digestion is implicated in LI.

Allergies may be a different story. An unsigned article in the Tamil Star, What is exercise-induced food allergy? starts with this tantalizing paragraph.
Exercise can induce an allergic reaction to food. The usual scenario is that of a person eating a specific food, and then exercising. As he exercises and his body temperature increases, he begins to itch, gets lightheaded, and soon develops the characteristic allergic reactions of hives, asthma, abdominal symptoms, and even anaphylaxis. The cure, actually a preventive measure, for exercise-induced food allergy is simple-not eating for at least two hours before exercising.

No cites, no studies, no doctors quoted.

Tantalizing, though. And unproven.

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