Because of spam, I personally moderate all comments left on my blog. However, because of health issues, I will not be able to do so in the future.

If you have a personal question about LI or any related topic you can send me an email at I will try to respond.

Otherwise, this blog is now a legacy site, meaning that I am not updating it any longer. The basic information about LI is still sound. However, product information and weblinks may be out of date.

In addition, my old website, Planet Lactose, has been taken down because of the age of the information. Unfortunately, that means links to the site on this blog will no longer work.

For quick offline reference, you can purchase Planet Lactose: The Best of the Blog as an ebook on or 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.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

International Vegetarian Union

Happy Cow, the subject of yesterday's post, is a member of the International Vegetarian Union.

Based in Britain, the IVU is a huge organiation with a long history.

The International Vegetarian Union is a growing global network of independent organizations which are promoting vegetarianism worldwide.


The International Vegetarian Union (IVU) was founded in 1908 when the first World Vegetarian Congress was held in Dresden, Germany. The idea for IVU came from the French Vegetarian Society, the first Congress was organised internationally by the British Society and locally by the Dresden Society with support from the Deutsche Vegetarier-Bund. Since then a series of World Congresses have been held all around the world, and in 2008 IVU returned to Dresden for the Centenary 38th Congress. See the list on the right and full details at The History of IVU.


The International Vegetarian Union is a non-profit making organisation.

• Full Membership is open to any non-profit organisation whose primary purpose is to promote vegetarianism and is governed exclusively by vegetarians.
• Associate Membership is open to any non-profit organisation which advocates vegetarianism.
• A Supporter of IVU may be any individual, family or organisation that supports the aims and objectives of IVU, regardless of whether they are vegetarian or not.

For the purpose of membership of IVU, vegetarianism includes veganism and is defined as the practice of not eating meat, poultry or fish or their by-products, with or without the use of dairy products or eggs.


The aim of the IVU is to promote vegetarianism throughout the world. In order to achieve this aim the main objectives are:

• To encourage the formation of local, national and regional vegetarian organisations, and co-operation between them.
• To promote both World and Regional Vegetarian Congresses to publicise and develop interest in the vegetarian cause and to give opportunities for vegetarians to meet together.
• To raise funds to support member societies wherever possible.
• To encourage research into all aspects of vegetarianism and the collection and publication, in all media, of material on all aspects of vegetarianism, by IVU itself and by all member societies.
• To represent the vegetarian cause on appropriate international bodies and to speak on behalf of the global cause when appropriate.

If you seriously want to persue these interests, the IVU is having it biannual World Vegetarian Congress in Jakarta, Indonesia from October 1-6, 2010. American readers may want to wait until 2012 when it will be held in San Francisco.

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Happy Cow Compassionate Eating Guide

While searching on sites to help travelers, I came across Happy Cow Compassionate Eating Guide.

HappyCow's vegetarian restaurants guide is a global, searchable vegetarian dining guide and directory of natural health food stores, including nutrition & health tips, vegan recipes, raw foods, travel, veganism and other vegetarian issues.

The site also contains a Healthy Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes page.
Are you new to the vegetarian diet and would like to find some healthy recipes? Or maybe you are a veggie food lover who likes to dabble in the kitchen? Need a veggie recipe for holiday entertaining or a romantic dinner? HappyCow's Vegetarian Recipes features international vegetarian cuisine from healthy, low-fat recipes, including Vegan food dishes, Raw food recipes, Low calorie recipes, Low fat meal ideas,

Vegan desserts, and Macrobiotic cooking. Our collection of plant-based, pure vegetarian, vegan recipes will satisfy every palate. Feel free to experiment, add your comment & review for each recipe, and share your vegetarian cooking tips. Also email us your original veggie recipes for posting here!

Bookmark and Share

Monday, June 28, 2010

My Grocery Master iPhone App

Nicole VanderPloeg brought her iPhone app to my attention.

I wanted to let you know about a new iPhone application that’s perfect for your readers! My Grocery Master is a first-of-its-kind iPhone application that enables people following lactose-free diets to find specialty food products at grocery stores near their location. Simply type in your zip code, search a food product and "My Grocery Master" will scan its database of the top 100 grocery store chains in the country to identify the nearest store that carries the desired items. In addition, the app will provide convenient driving directions from your location to the selected grocery store.

Whether you’re on the road, visiting a friend, or cooking a meal at home that requires a certain product, people following lactose-free diets can now find comfort in knowing their food needs are at their fingertips.

Here's the direct link to the iTunes app page for My Grocery Master.

Thanks, Nicole.

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A Healthy Sampling of Non-Milk Cheeses

Out in the Pacific Northwest Inlander, Leah Sottile surveyed a range of non-dairy cheeses available in local stores.Since most of those sounded like they'd be available elsewhere as well, I thought I'd convey her report to you.

Over the course of the last few weeks, I’ve sampled all kinds of faux cheeses to see how they measure up to the real thing. And maybe it’s because I don’t have a physical ailment that prevents me from eating them — but most of them aren’t very good at all.

There are exceptions, however. At Yoke’s on Argonne and at Huckleberry’s (at the Y and on the South Hill), you can get your hands on a sizable bag of Daiya cheese in either cheddar or mozzarella. Vegans are going nuts for Daiya, a fairly new brand, because unlike so many faux cheeses it melts and stretches and gets all goopy for nachos and things like that. We used the mozzarella in a veggie lasagna, and the Daiya acted just like the real stuff — adding body and a creaminess when intermingled with our homemade marinara, whole-wheat pasta, mushrooms, spinach and spices.

And a week later, a friend threw Daiya in a bread and-mushroom panade — again, I was impressed. The cheddar was a little more over the top in the flavor department, delivering a surprising punch that tasted like Velveeta. We made a Mexican pizza with it and it was a little much — but would have been great in a mac ’n’ cheese.

In searching for good cheese alternatives, creamy, spreadable “cheeses” seemed to be a safe bet. I was shocked by how addictive all of the We Can’t Say It’s Cheese spreadable cheeses were. I picked up their Cheddar-style Spread and Hickory-Smoked Cheddar-Style Spread at Rosauers on 29th and was totally shocked at how tasty they were on everything. Crackers. Sandwiches. Tortillas. Chips. And, oddly, all of spreads are made from oats. And they taste like cheese. Weird. If for some reason I couldn’t eat cheese any more, this stuff would definitely become a cornerstone of my diet. Tofutti cream cheese and sour cream were both spot-on with the flavor of the real stuff — I’m sure I could sneak either of them to an unwilling vegan cheese consumer and they’d have no idea.


Though not vegan (it contains a milk product called casein), the Lisanatti Almond Garlic & Herb style cheese alternative surprised me with its peppery flavor and toothsome texture. You’ll see it as often as the Tofutti brand in stores, and it’s definitely superior. I ate a few pictures by it self — and wasn’t blown away, but didn’t throw it in the garbage like the Follow Your Heart stuff. However, on the way back to the fridge, I dropped it and was slightly grossed out by how high off the ground the block bounced. Ew.

The brands don’t end at the grocery store: Online, you can find Dr. Cow Aged Cheeses made from cashews, the Daiya-like Teese Cheese, and the Edam, Gouda and Cheshire-style Sheese.

She really didn't like the products from Follow Your Heart at all. Bad odor.

She's still on the trail of the perfect cheesy substitute. She just hasn't found it.

Bookmark and Share

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook

The Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook: 125 Easy and Delicious Recipes to Jump-Start Weight Loss and Help You Feel Great, by Neal Barnard and Robyn Webb was reviewed on by Miss Bob Etier.

Instead of concentrating on what The Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook may lack, let’s have some fun and look at what it contains. Authors Neal Barnard, MD, and chef Robyn Webb serve up 125 recipes that forgo meat, animal products, and nasty animal byproducts (yeeesh, just the thought of byproducts is scary!). Dr. Barnard is the author of the best-seller, Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes as well as seven other health and nutrition titles. This man is seriously into nutrition. But what about taste?

Barnard and Webb’s recipes are especially appealing to those who are not fans of TVP (texturized vegetable protein). When I visit a vegetarian/vegan restaurant, I don’t want to eat things that are made to look like meat; I want veggies. Okay, so I’m old school. I’m also not vegetarian; meat makes cameo appearances in my diet, and if I want something that looks and tastes like meat, I’ll eat meat. Usually, I do not.

The first fifty pages of The Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook serve as a primer on vegan cooking, the health-benefits of a vegan diet, and nutrition. If you’re hungry, skip them and move on to page 55 where you will find breakfast: green chile and oyster mushroom crepes. Anything with mushrooms is a winner, but these crepes can also be filled with blueberries or strawberries as the authors suggest, or anything else you may like in your crepes.

Product Description

In Dr. Neal Barnard’s Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook, the country’s leading diabetes team weighs in on America’s hottest dietary trend. The cookbook is based on a landmark two-year study conducted by Dr. Barnard, which showed that a vegan diet more effectively controls type 2 diabetes. In fact, it‘s also beneficial for weight loss, the reversal of heart disease, and the improvement of many other conditions. Dr. Barnard and nutritionist Robyn Webb now offer easy, delicious meals to improve your health.

Featuring 125 flavorful recipes, readers will find all-occasion dishes that use familiar ingredients and require minimal effort. All recipes are free of animal products, low in fat, and contain a low-to-moderate glycemic index.

Barnard and Webb explain how diet changes can have such dramatic health effects and provide simple ways to get started. With convenient menus, scientifically proven advice, and inspiring stories from real people who have used Barnard’s recommendations to turn their health around, there’s no better cookbook to help you eat well and feel great.

Da Capo Lifelong Books Trade paperback
List Price: $18.95
248 pages

Bookmark and Share

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Submit Comments on Dietary Guidelines for Americans

Every five years, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services must revise its dietary guidelines. These get more controversial each time as more and more special interest groups chime in demanding that the government protect or promote their interests and more and more special interest groups put in their two cents demanding that the government stay out of their business. Somewhere in between are you, who are probably represented by one or more of those groups who you know it - or like it - or not.

But you get a say in the whole process. You can submit comments just like any well-funded outfit with a squadron of lobbyists.

Written comments can be submitted at or mailed to Carole Davis, Co-Executive Secretary, Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion, Room 1034, Alexandria, VA 22302.

To provide oral testimony at the July 8 public meeting, you must register by going to or by calling Crystal Tyler at (202) 314-4701 prior to 5 p.m. EDT on June 30. The meeting will be held in the Jefferson Auditorium in the USDA South Building, 14th Street and Independence Avenue, S.W., on July 8 beginning at 9:00 a.m. and ending not later than 5:00 p.m.

Just so you know exactly what you're commenting on, the entire report is available online as a series of pdf's. Go to this page for the report, plus appendices and special supplemental information.

Bookmark and Share

Monday, June 21, 2010

The Intolerant Family Cookbook

No family's cooking is like any other family's cooking. That's the big lesson I've taken from the millions of mothers who have confronted the problem of allergies and intolerances in their own households and found none of the hundreds of cookbooks already on the market suitable.

Nancy Strohs of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel wrote Family learned to tolerate food intolerances about Ellen Fitzgerald, who within two years found she was both lactose and gluten intolerant, and her daughter Molly Lepeska, who got a diagnosis of type 1 diabetes.

They self published The Intolerant Family Cookbook: Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free, Family Friendly Food.

The 120 or so recipes, a mix of family favorites and recipes adapted from food magazines such as Bon Appetit, are not intended to comprise a comprehensive collection for all occasions and tastes. Recipes are arranged under appetizers, soups, salads, main courses, veggies, breads and desserts. The authors worked especially hard on the starters.

Recipes in their book marked with a "faster than takeout" carryout box require less than 45 minutes to prepare.

You can order the book from their website,

Bookmark and Share

Sunday, June 20, 2010

13 Frugal Shopping Tips For Food Allergies

The Coupon Sherpa at CT provides a baker's dozen of hints for families needing to buy special, allergy-free food and don't want to break the bank while doing so.

I'll just list the 13 tips. You should click over and read the full article for the good details.

1. Meal Planning
2. Read Labels Carefully
3. Strike-Point Shopping
4. Coupons
5. Buy In Bulk
6. Buy Online
7. Warehouse Clubs
8. Supermarkets
9. Specialty Stores
10. Ethnic Stores
11. Food Co-ops
12. Medical Expenses
13. Epinephrine Auto Injectors

Check out the Coupon Sherpa on the site:

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Lactose Is Not High Fructose Corn Syrup

I found an odd comment through Google News but was frustrated when I clicked on the link. Apparently you can only view broadcasts from the Christian Broadcasting Network if you are a logged-in member, yet the comments on the programs are completely open to all. It took me some hunting before I accidentally changed onto the article itself.

But the comments are not on, but on This comment page is on the program and article, "Are You Being Processed to Death?" I can't find a way to get from one to the other.

The article has some standard rants against high fructose corn syrup.

Former FDA toxicologist Dr. Dana Flavin says while sugar is burned and turned into energy, high fructose corn syrup turns into fat, causing what's known as "fatty liver." She says sugar can make you feel full, but high fructose corn syrup does not trigger the body's satisfaction gauge, so you always desire more. ...

Also on the list are other syrups and sweeteners like dextrose, glucose, lactose and maltose.

What is the body's satisfaction gauge? I can't tell you. A Google search indicates that only this article and the comments on it use the phrase.

But that is the problem. One of the comments contains this paragraph.
The different names for "high fructose corn syrup" are "dextrose, glucose, lactose, maltose." These turn into fat (causing "fatty liver") and do not trigger the body's satisfaction gauge.

Not a single word of that paragraph is correct. High fructose corn syrup (HFCS) is not the equivalent of dextrose or glucose or lactose or maltose. No such labeling is allowed in the U.S. Nor do any of these sugars turn into fat any more than any other excess calories taken in the body might eventually be stored as fat. Although some preliminary studies with rats showed that diets contained as much HFCS as they wanted to eat could cause fatty liver disease, these studies have not been carried out with humans. The studies that recently made the papers was one which took people who already had fatty liver disease and showed that those who ate foods with fructose might end up with liver scarring. An article at said that its not clear if the sweetener directly caused the scarring. And the study used fructose found in many foods, including healthy diet food like fruits. HFCS was only a small part of the overall study.

Basically, the article was overly broad, the comment scientifically illiterate. Yet the fear they produce will go much farther than the qualified findings of a proper medical study. Such is the way of the internet.

Bookmark and Share

Friday, June 18, 2010

NIH Conference Report on Lactose Intolerance and Health

Yeah, I know that I already did a 28-part series on this. However, I wanted to get the official journal citation onto the record.

The summary statement from the National Institutes of Health Consensus Development Conference: Lactose Intolerance and Health by Frederick J. Suchy et al. was published in Annals of Internal Medicine, June 15, 2010, vol. 152 no. 12 792-796. Full text at:

Bookmark and Share

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Shaved Ice the Coming Hot Summer Cooler

Mexicans have raspados, Koreans bingsu. The Taiwanese flavor their bao bing with palm sugar syrup. Cubans call their version granizados, Puerto Ricans name them piraguas because of the pyramid shape, and in the Dominican Republican they are known simply as frio-frio or cold-cold.

Americans have them as well. In Baltimore they're sky-blue and topped with marshmallows.

They're all versions of simple flavored shaved ice, the sophisticated adult version of the snow cone. (Sophisticated but down-to-earth. In a large enough city Indian street vendors sell golas and chuskis, which are flavored with rose, cardamom, orange and saffron.)

As Julia Moskin explained in The New York Times, the difference between the two forms of syrup and ice is profound.

[A] snow cone is usually a mound of crunchy hailstones sitting in a pool of synthetic sugar syrup. The ice is crushed into pellets that send shivers up into the brain, and the flavoring has no chance of being absorbed into the ice.

But there is another way. A way of scraping ice so that it falls softly into cups like a January snowfall, and soaks up flavor the way dry ground soaks up rain in July.

Apparently shaved ice will be the next Pinkberry. Eventually. Maybe. Unless you happen to be traveling or live in a city that is experimenting with these stores, though, you might be better off trying to make shaved ice concoptions at home. Moskin rated home machines.
Commercial ice-shaving machines cost thousands of dollars, but some low-tech home versions have recently come onto the market, for about $25 to $35. The two simplest, the Back to Basics (also called the Hawaiice) and the Hamilton Beach Snowman, both work well, if noisily, with ice cubes. The mechanics of these are simple: a plastic cup filled with ice has a blade on the bottom. A motor spins the ice while you press down, forcing it over the blade. It takes about a minute to shave enough heaps of dry, fluffy snow for four snow cones.

The machines work even better with the provided ice molds, though that requires some planning. The molds can be filled with plain water, or with mixtures of water, fruit purées and syrups to produce flavored snow (try making café con leche ice, then topping the snow with chocolate syrup). I plan to put some favorite sorbet, granita and cold-soup mixtures through the shaver, as the texture is so lovely and the process so simple.

A more complicated Hamilton Beach device, the Icy Treats, can supposedly be used to mix frozen cocktails as well as for shaved ice, but in my experience it didn’t do a good job of either.

You can find them at the usual online retailers or try a specialty service like Hawaiian Shaved Ice. Not surprisingly, the Hawaiians have been experimenting with ice and fruit for a long time.

Now the warning. People will put almost anything onto shaved ice, and that includes milk and cream. The New Orleans snoball, for example, comes in a regular and a "cream" variety.

If you have a milk allergy or want to stay strictly vegan, you should ask carefully for all the ingredients of what you're about to put into your mouth. To be sure, that always holds true. Just never more so when a new type of food comes onto the market.

Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Win a Lactose-Intolerant Space Alien

Futurama returns. And it's dragging the Simpsons down with it. Into the pages of a two-part crossover graphic novel, The Simpsons/Futurama Crossover Crisis.

What would happen if the Planet Express crew and the citizens of New York City in the 31st Century met The Simpsons and the citizens of Springfield . . . and how is it even possible? Prepare yourself for a Simpsons saga filled with Futurama! A Futurama fable suffused with The Simpsons! Featuring a plethora of pleasing plot devices including: evil brain spawn, lactose-intolerant space aliens, a giant ball of yarn, flying cars, mistaken identities, world domination, the brittle fabric of reality torn asunder, a comic book-collecting sentient planet, the Dewey Decimal system, self-eating watermelons, slave labor, space pirates, power-crazed vampires, super hero battles, unflattering underwear, mad science run amok, and much, much more!

Much, much more? They don't want to tell you the details, but I'll break the secret.

You could win a copy of ◦The SimpsonsFuturama Crossover Crisis graphic novel. (Which, I have to break it to you gently, are repeats of comics published in 2002 and 2005 repackaged with a "reprint of the very first Eisner Award-winning issue of Simpsons Comics from 1993.")

If you still want to enter, go to this Movieweb page and find the Click Here link.

Lactose intolerance! ...../...../..... IN sPACE!!!!!!!

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Cubs Game Postponed Due to Frozen Kefir Deliciousness

Babe Ruth was a legendary gourmand. A couple of dozen hot dogs tided him over from a pre-game snack to the after game meal, where he might memorably wash down a 36 ounce steak with a 16 ounce steak.

So what might he think of the news that "frozen kefir, custom parfaits and low-fat smoothies, is prominently featured in the Wrigley Field locker room and soon–to-be in the press room." Low-fat smoothies. I believe that in the unlikely event that the Babe called up a mental picture of the phrase low-fat smoothies he visualized a group of thin young hoors. Not even hors, as in hors d'oeuvre, which he might devour a tray or two of if stuck at a fancy-smancy party of the type where he once refused the asparagus on the grounds that it made his piss stink.

But no. These are health foods, perpetrated upon the machoness of the brawny shoulders of the Chicago baseball scene by the Starfruit Cafe, a subsidiary of Lifeway Foods.

Lifeway Foods will sponsor the company's second "Lifeway Foods Day" at Wrigley Field. The first 10,000 children entering Wrigley Field on Sunday, June 20 will receive a "ProBugs" toy courtesy of Lifeway Foods. All fans will be able to sample Lifeway Kefir products at a specially-marked booth on the main concourse.

Lifeway Foods is America's leading supplier of the cultured dairy product known as Kefir and Organic Kefir. Lifeway Kefir is a dairy beverage that contains 10 exclusive live and active probiotic cultures. Starfruit Cafe, a subsidiary of Lifeway Foods, serves frozen kefir products at four local Chicago stores.

The horror, the horror. The Horror can be read in a press release in the Sacramento Bee by the Lifeway People.

Want to know more about kefir? Try my earlier posts, How Good for You Is Kefir? and an even earlier post about Lifeway bringing frozen kefir to Chicago.

The Babe like beer that was cold, and probably oysters that were chilled, and meat that was as sizzling hot as his bat. Kefir? It's a different world.

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Is Beta-Lactose Bad for You?

Why does the subject of raw milk bring out so much bad science presented under the guise of being good science? I'm baffled. You'd think that drinking raw milk wouldn't prevent you from using the internet to look up basic facts.

And yet here we go again, At, another of those deadly sites that allow anybody with a computer to post nonsense, JD Moore wrote Why I Got Raw Milk.

After the usual attack on pasteurization Ms Moore goes on to say:

The problem with pasteurization is that it kills the good as well as the perceived bad, and destroys some of the most beneficial and nutritious aspects of the living raw food. The lactose enzyme is killed, making the milk indigestible for many. Lactose becomes beta-lactose, a sugar far more rapidly absorbed, leaving the child feeling hungry sooner.


Let's go to an expert and unbiased page on milk chemistry from Cornell University:
Lactose is dissolved in the serum (whey) phase of fluid milk. Lactose dissolved in solution is found in 2 forms, called the α-anomer and ß-anomer, that can convert back and forth between each other. The solubility of the 2 anomers is temperature dependent and therefore the equilibrium concentration of the 2 forms will be different at different temperatures. At room temperature (70°F, 20°C) the equilibrium ratio is approximately 37% α- and 63% ß-lactose. At temperatures above 200°F (93.5°C) the ß-anomer is less soluble so there is a higher ratio of α- to ß-lactose. The type of anomer present does not affect the nutritional properties of lactose.

In other words, not only does the presence of beta lactose not make a particle of difference to the digestibility of lactose, the higher temperatures of pasteurization promote the alpha variety over the beta variety, exactly the opposite of Moore's contention.

If for some reason you don't want to believe milk scientists, try checking out the folks at They do mention the two forms of lactose. They don't say a single word about either form being more or less digestible.

The Raw Milk Facts site also doesn't provide any evidence for Moore's next sentence, "Up to 20 percent of the iodine in milk is destroyed along with part of the Vitamin C."

Where does this contention, so often found in pro-raw milk diatribes, come from? From the raw milk proponents, the Weston A. Price Foundation. Or, more accurately, from a page they have on their site quoting a 1938 article from Armchair Science. You may think I'm kidding, but this is really cited.
This is a statement from Armchair Science, London (April 1938) Armchair Science is, or was, a British Medical Journal.

Chris Gupta
This 1938 BMJ (British Medical Journal) is yet again destroy's [sic] the mistaken notion that pasteurized milk is safe when to the contrary it has been repeatedly shown that most diseases from milk are not from the raw milk (which in fact has curative factors in it) but form [sic] the sloppy and filthy handling during milking and subsequent handling. Both of which can be prevented today yet we choose not too.

My Toxic Tummy
Armchair Science is a British Medical Journal

No, no, and no. And no to all the others who say this, easily found in a Google search.

The British Medical Journal is a British medical journal. Armchair Science was an ordinary popular science magazine, not a peer-reviewed research publication.

This is what the internet is for, what it is best at. A universal library of convenient facts and information at your fingertips, allowing you to check whether what you are saying is anywhere close to accurate in a few seconds.

So what does it say about the people who post nonsense and quote other peoples' nonsense without ever bothering to check any of it?

Bad things. Very bad things.

Please ignore them. Please.

Bookmark and Share

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Lactaid Changing Its Look

Lactaid sent me an email to announce that the design of its milk carton is about to change. Or may already have changed, if the tense in the announcement is to be trusted.

We've put our old look out to pasture, but the milk you love remains unchanged. It's still 100% lactose-free and 100% delicious, with all of the calcium and vitamin D of regular milk.

Check all the Lactaid products on their site.

Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Hot and Raw, Just Like You Like It

Headlines aren't headlines any more. They're just lures for content crawlers. The more spicy, lurid, dramatic, eye-catching, and stupid they are, the more chance they'll be clicked on.

Why? Because there are no editors any more. When you picked up a newspaper or magazine or book you knew that the contents had passed through the hand of an editor, so you could expect to read something that had some meaning and was somewhat professional. No longer. Now everything is equal and you read whatever happens to catch your eye.

End of rant. I just wanted to let you know about the "Hot Raw Chef" Video Recipe Contest. Disappointed? Hey, with $1800 in prizes it's a happier ending than most of those come-on headlines will ever be.

Here's the press release.

Living Light Culinary Arts Institute, a gourmet raw food teaching facility in Northern California is launching a “Hot Raw Chef” Video Recipe Contest as part of the Living Light Chef Showcase, streaming live August 27-29, 2010. Entries must be 100% raw vegan recipes, with a minimum of 90% raw (never heated over 118 degrees Fahrenheit) ingredients by weight. $1150 Grand Prize includes a Food Styling for Photography Class, taught by Living Light Director Cherie Soria, author of The Raw Food Revolution Diet, and Denise Vivaldo, a professional food stylist and author of How to Start a Home-Based Catering Business. The Grand Prize winner will also earn a place as a featured chef during the event. Runner up receives $450 worth of prizes, and the People’s Choice Award, valued at $250, goes to the aspiring chef who wins the most votes online. A total of more than $1800 in prizes will be awarded.

The contest is open to both professional and amateur chefs who submit a 5 minute video demonstrating an original raw vegan recipe. Entries will be evaluated on presentation, teaching style, recipe quality, and adherence to judging criteria. Deadline for submissions is Midnight June 30, 2010 Pacific Daylight Time. Visit for contest guidelines and details. ...

The Living Light Chef Showcase will highlight step-by-step demonstrations of healthy, sustainable, earth friendly dishes with a gourmet spin—everything from dairy-free vegan "cheeses" and pates, to appetizers, soups, entrees, breads, crackers, sauces, dips, and incredible desserts. 12 top raw food chefs and one lucky "Hot Raw Chef" Video Recipe Contest winner will translate the flavors of the world into a brand new language.

And now... hot, raw nudes!

Bookmark and Share

Monday, June 07, 2010

Attention Lawyers: The Other MooTopia

In my last post I talked about MooTopia, a "designer milk" that's been around for years, yet has such a low profile that its own company's website doesn't even mention it.

It gets funnier. Unless you're a corporate lawyer.

Mootopia is also the latest ad campaign from the California Milk Processor Board. Which you shouldn't care about in the least, unless you're one of the people who live for this sort of stuff. In that case you know them as the progenitors of the insanely successfully "got milk?" ad avalanche that's been running for 17 years!

Every once in a while, though, they crank out a variation. And starting just this past April, the new ad campaign - from the same fabled ad firm - has been "the comic complications of living someplace where one’s milk cup always runneth over — a 'milky magical land' known as Mootopia."

You read that correctly. The most powerful force in the milk world stole another milk manufacturer's brand name as the focus of their new campaign.

[Disclaimer: Hey, for all I know there was a deal made by Select Milk Producers Inc., the makers of MooTopia milk, to license the name MooTopia to the California Milk Processor Board. But I haven't yet found a single reference that links the two. Yes, you're reading about it here first. A Planet Lactose exclusive. Stop the presses!]

Here's what Stuart Elliott of New York Times has to say about the campaign.

On a Web site ( and in television commercials, female inhabitants of Mootopia, using straws to drink from a lake of milk, learn how problematic having beautiful, shiny hair can be. The men are all so strong from drinking milk that arm-wrestling contests settle no arguments.

And the dentist in Mootopia realizes he chose the wrong profession because he cannot even give away free cleanings to people with what he calls "perfect teeth."

Running ads about the effects of deprivation "was a strategy that worked well for us lo those many years," said Steve James, executive director of the milk board in San Clemente, Calif.

But some recent, short-term initiatives that played up the functional benefits of milk — like a campaign spoofing the steroids scandal in baseball, proclaiming milk was a "performance-enhancing substance" — were well received, he added.

That led to consideration for a shift in the direction of the campaign, Mr. James said, to portraying milk as a "superdrink," superior to sports drinks, sodas or energy drinks, "without getting all clinical."

The website is, a flash animation hog that takes forever to load. (Forget about viewing it on your iPads.) All the commercials are there. And only there. They've been removed from YouTube. (And quite properly, since they were uploaded without permission. There is a mootopia channel, but oops: it's a user named mootopia.)

I love corporate screw-ups because I'm a one-person operation and I have to do all the work and make sure everything is right all the time. Corporations pay hundreds of people thousands of dollars to do similar stuff and still manage to get it wrong astoundingly more often than I do.

Oh, please send this around until it goes viral. I'd love to read about the milk ad superfirm of Goodby, Silverstein & Partners looking for Dewey, Cheatum, and Howe to whip up a quick settlement wiping the white milk from their red faces.

Bookmark and Share

Saturday, June 05, 2010

MooTopia: Designer Lactose-Free Milk

Whenever you think of members of Congress taking exotic junkets to some tropical resort or luxury hotel, think upon this. Work has already begun on the 2012 Farm Bill. And members of the U.S. House Agriculture Committee went to Lubbock, TX last month to attend the seventh in a series of field hearings on the Texas Tech University campus. That's not glamorous, not sexy, and not calculated to get their names on cable news.

A story by Jerry Lackey covering the hearings for the San Angelo, TX Standard-Times featured Brad Bouma, a fifth-generation dairy farmer from Plainview in the Texas Panhandle. Bouma has another distinction. He "also serves as president of Select Milk Producers Inc., a marketing cooperative owned by dairy farmers who have dairies in Texas, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Kansas."

And what milk does Select Milk make? Bouma said:

"Through patented technology, Select has developed the means to create 'designer milks.' High quality milk fresh from the farm goes through several filtration processes separating the fat from the protein, from the sugars, from the calcium and other solids from the water. These then are recombined in different ratios to provide a different profile of milk."

The lactose, is also removed, converted to two simple sugars, glucose and galactose.

"For six years, H-E-B has been marketing one such milk in Texas," Bouma said. "This milk is produced by Select Milk and bottled by H-E-B at its plants in Texas. This designer milk, called 'Mootopia,' has more protein and more calcium (all fresh from cow’s milk) but with fewer carbohydrates. This lactose-free milk still tastes the same sweetness as regular milk."

I don't understand this, since glucose and galactose are still carbohydrates and are sweeter than regular milk, but Lackey may have left a step out of the process.

But the answer is surely at the Select Milk website, right?

Wrong. If you drill in several levels, you come to a .pdf labeled designer milk for women.

It's not immediately obvious that this is the same milk as MooTopia, but it sure seems close. A story on the website by David Phillips lists the attributes of MooTopia:
In 2005, H.E. Butt Grocery Co. (H-E-B), based here on the Texas Gulf Coast introduced MooTopia, milk that features 60% less sugar, 35% more calcium, 75% more protein and 4g carbohydrates, per serving.

MooTopia is also lactose free, and it is substantially creamier and more flavorful than traditional milk, according to H-E-B. The company says taste tests show that MooTopia skim milk is creamier than traditional 2% milk, while MooTopia 2% is creamier than traditional whole milk.

H-E-B, along with partner Select Milk Producers Inc., Artesia, N.M., patented the process.

Designer milk for Women claims 175% More Protein; 60% Less Sugar; 160% More Calcium; and 100% Lactose Free. What happens when you match them up? Claims are made for the same nutrients. Both have 60% less sugar. MooTopia has 75% more protein which would be the same if what Designer Milk meant was that its protein is 175% of the protein in standard milk. The calcium percentages are harder to reconcile. 35% more is not quite the same as saying 160% of the original calcium. 4g of carbohydrate may be 100 lactose free, however. Otherwise, why two separate lactose-free designer milks? That's not as big a question as asking why MooTopia never appears by name at the Select Milk website, though. That one baffles me. MooTopia goes back five or six years. You should be able to find out more about it much more easily. People still write about it. Dairy Business News had a major article on it and another designer milk, Athlete's Honey Milk, made by the same people, as recently as January 2010.

Where is it marketed? Who buys it? What does it taste like? All seems steeped in mystery.

And that's not the only Mootopia mystery. More next time.

Bookmark and Share

Friday, June 04, 2010

Josie Brooklyn Duggar Going Home After LI Scare

I watch The Soup, the snarky snow about weird and annoying people on television. I've been a fan since the early days when Greg Kinnear was hosting it as Talk Soup. I need my Soup, because otherwise I would be blankly ignorant about most of American television, especially the reality show part of it. I've never watched a reality series. Ever. I may have watched a full episode of one at some point but my memory's hazy because of all the brain cells that would have killed.

So programs like E's The Soup - and its compatriots like Style's The Dish and Current's InfoMania - are what keep me from being the grandfather in the comic strip The Pickles. And thanks to The Soup I recognize a reference to 19 Kids and Counting, the deeply disturbing show about a family that started the series with 17 children and couldn't stop reproducing. The mother, Michelle Duggar, is now 43, an age when problems can often occur with greater frequency. Baby #19, Josie Brooklyn, was born premature though an emergency C-section, weighing a tiny and dangerous 1 lb., 6 oz. Josie has been in and out of the hospital since.

RealityTVWorld reported in early May that:

Despite the weight gain, doctors are still trying to learn why Josie is suffering from several digestive issues that require her to receive enemas at six-hour intervals.

Since May Josie's gained two more pounds, up to 7 lb, 6 oz now, and doctors have figured out what her problem was.

Lactose intolerance.

Now it's often true that premature babies suffer from lactose intolerance. The ability of the intestines to make lactase is one of the last aspects to develop and is usually not up to near-full strength until shortly before birth. Those babies are therefore born with intestines that do not handle lactose well. This is extremely well-known and any competent pediatric gastroenterologist will compensate for it.

I can't begin to explain why a baby would need enemas four times a day for any issues relating to lactose intolerance. None of the articles I could find give any additional explanation.

I have to believe this was a highly unusual outcome. Most premature babies begin drinking milk normally within a few weeks of birth. Josie Brooklyn was born extremely early and may have had other problems as well, so she is not indicative of what is likely to happen to your premature infant. I'm glad the doctors did figure things out. She is going home, this time hopefully permanently. I wish them all good health.

Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

Lactase Drops: Downbeat Update

I recently wrote about Pharmax Liquid Lactase Drops being unavailable. I wasn't sure then whether that meant only a temporary problem, though.

No sure luck. Another site that featured the drops from their very introduction has bad news. The IBS Treatment Center site wrote:

Liquid Lactase Drops

This product has been discontinued. The manufacturer indicates they hope to replace it with a new product but the schedule for release is not currently available.

Sorry, everyone. I'll try to get word of any new product out as soon as it's available.

In the meantime, there's always Canada.

Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Two Books for Dairy-Allergic Kids

Cody the Allergic Cow is one of a series of books about children with various food allergies, along with Chad the Allergic Chipmunk (nut allergies) and Allie the Allergic Elephant (peanut allergies), all written by Nicole Smith and illustrated by Maggie Nichols.

Cody the Allergic Cow is a cleverly written book that will help those of us in public education support one more sector of our population. Through such enlightened awareness students, teachers and parents will serve as a catalyst for more inclusiveness and normalization. --Lew Davis, Principal, Foothills Elementary School

Cody through its delightful illustrations, lets a child learn about milk allergy, understand responsible behavior, and know that kids can be allergic to milk yet still have fun. Kids with milk allergy are special, just like Cody! --Lynda Mitchell, Mother of milk-allergic child, Food allergy support group facilitator

Thank you, Nicole and Maggie, for another child friendly, informative book on food allergies. I'm delighted to have another one of your books and will recommend Cody the Allergic Cow for the little ones in my practice with milk or other food allergies. --Bonnie Baswell, M. D. Allergist, Colorado Springs, CO

Product Description
Cody the Allergic Cow helps children learn about milk allergies and how to recognize an allergic reaction. Cody explains milk allergies in a way that parents, teachers, and children themselves can talk about allergies and understand them better. Written by the author of Allie the Allergic Elephant, Cody is her next book discussing severe food allergies.

Allergic Child Publishing Group
26 pages
List price: $12.95

Another option is The No Biggie Bunch Dairy-Free Dino-Licious Dig, written by Heather Mehra and Kerry McManama and illustrated by Michael Kline.

Product Description
Grab your shovels! Join Davis and Natalie as they scour the backyard for dinosaur parts and bone up on allergen-free snacking. You never know what they might dig up! The No Biggie BunchTM is a new book series for Kids Creatively Coping with Food Allergies. Their stories are meant to act as springboards for conversation among children, parents, teachers, friends and family members.

The other books about the No Biggie Bunch are Trade-or-Treat Halloween, Peanut-Free Tea for Three, and Sports-Tastic Birthday Party, all by the same creative team.

Parent Perks, Inc.
32 pages
List price: $14.99

Bookmark and Share