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.


Thursday, October 29, 2009

Once Again, Animal Milks and Lactose Intolerance Don't Mix

Appropriate and timely for Halloween: the Nonsense That Just Won't Die!

Remember when I beat my head again the wall because of the lady who claimed that goat milk had smaller lactose molecules?

I found another one.

Yayi International is a leading manufacturer and distributor of goat milk powder products in China. While the Company's main focus is premium infant formula goat milk products, its product portfolio currently includes goat milk powders, goat milk formula tablets, and goat foremilk powder. ...

Compared with cow milk, the molecules of lactose in goat milk are smaller, making the milk more easily absorbed by individuals who are sensitive to milk products.

They vant your money. Bevare!

And they're not alone. Camel milk has equally magical properties!
If Dr. Millie Hinkle has her way, camel milk will someday be as easy to find in North Carolina as barbecue.

For 3,000 years, camel milk has been revered for its medicinal properties in the Middle East and Hinkle, a physician in Raleigh, hopes to bring it to the U.S. and make it legal to sell.

"We know that folks who are diabetic or lactose intolerant have absolutely no allergy to camel milk, so it's a great thing for those people as well," she said.

Lactose intolerance doesn't involve an allergy. Neither does diabetes. Camel milk affects those with either in exactly the same way as cow's milk.

This particular nonsense is too dangerous to make jokes about. It's such extreme nonsense, though, that I have to wonder if the reporter is quoting Dr. Hinkle correctly. Unfortunately, it's within the realm of possibility. Dr. Hinkle is an ND, of Naturopathic Doctor, which North Carolina does not regulate or allow to prescribe medications, according to Wikipedia. Her site does include citations of medical journal articles about the possible efficacy of camel milk for diabetics, but also includes the false "fact" that "Camel milk can be easily digested by lactose-intolerant individuals."

No. It can't. Camel milk has almost exactly the lactose content of cow's milk. The protein segments are slightly different from those in cow's milk so that the immune systems of people with milk allergies may not get triggered by camel milk.

So where is the backing for that weird fact?

There's a link on that page of Dr. Hinkle's website that leads to Camel Milk for Food Allergies in Children by Yosef Shabo et al., Israeli Medical Association Journal, vol. 7, December 2005, pp. 796-798.

It does contain the following line:
Lactose is present in concentrations of 4.8%, but this milk sugar is easily metabolized by persons suffering from lactose intolerance [5].

But if you go to footnote 5, you find this:
5. Hanna J. Over the hump. In: Jack Hanna’s Animal Adventures. TV series (USA) 2001 season; #2190. www.animaladventures.com.

I kid you not. The justification for human lactose intolerants "easily metabolizing" camel's milk in an article in a medical journal comes from a syndicated television show for kids.

We're beyond surreal here. I can't compete with a guy who brings cute cuddly animals on television for a living. Why would anyone listen to me while they're watching Jack Hanna hold a bottle to the mouth of a baby camel? Awww. But he's not right about this.

And nobody in a medical journal should be citing his television show.

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