Tag Archives: Lactose intolerance

Different Types of Milk & Their Health Benefits

 

CLICK & SEE……Cow’s milk.
Whole cow’s milk packs 150 calories per cup, and about half of those calories come from fat. (See the related chart for a nutritional breakdown of all these different milks.) The 8 grams of fat in a cup of whole milk includes 5 grams of saturated fat, which can raise blood cholesterol. The American Heart Assn. recommends limiting saturated fat intake to 7% or less of daily calories: An adult consuming 1,800 calories per day would get more than one-third of that in an 8-ounce glass of whole milk.

Skim and reduced-fat milks provide the same amount of protein without the high levels of saturated fats or the cholesterol whole milk also contains. They also retain all of the calcium found in whole milk — up to 300 milligrams, about one-third of the recommended daily intake. According to the Institute of Medicine, adults require between 1,000 and 1,300 milligrams of calcium a day for optimum bone strength. And cow’s milk has long been promoted by nutritionists and dietitians as a good source of this important mineral, as well as the vitamin D needed to absorb the mineral.

But “there’s a fair amount of controversy in that whole area,” says Larry Kushi, associate director for epidemiology in the division of research at Kaiser Permanente Northern California in Oakland. The issue is just how important calcium — and milk as a source of calcium — truly is for bone health.

Scientists increasingly began to question the relationship after several studies, including two unusually large ones, failed to find evidence linking increased milk consumption to a decreased risk of fractures, a sign of bone health.

A 12-year study of more than 77,000 women, conducted by Harvard researchers and published in 1997, found that women who drank two glasses of milk a day had roughly the same risk of hip or forearm fractures as women who drank one glass or less per week. A 2003 investigation of the same population found that although vitamin D intake reduced the risk of hip fractures in post-menopausal women, high calcium and milk intake did not.

The science on the relationship between cow’s milk and cancer is also somewhat murky, and researchers are working to clarify this. Population studies have produced good evidence that increased dairy consumption, including that of milk, may decrease the risk of colorectal cancer. But studies also suggest that the risk of prostate cancer may increase with increasing milk consumption.

The evidence for female cancers — including breast, ovarian and endometrial cancers — is more mixed. Studies conducted several decades ago were less likely to demonstrate a link between dairy consumption and female cancers than more recent ones, and some nutrition experts think this difference may be linked to industrial practices that have increased the levels of the hormone estrogen in cow’s milk.

Then there’s the issue of milk allergy, an immune-system reaction to any of the several types of casein, whey or other proteins in milk. About 2.5% of children develop cow’s milk allergies in their first year, according to the National Institutes of Health, and 80% outgrow it in adulthood.

Other individuals suffer from lactose intolerance, the inability to digest the dominant sugar found in milk. The intolerance (which causes gas, bloating and diarrhea) stems from a lack of lactase, the enzyme required to break down the milk sugar lactose. It is far more common than milk allergy. “Most of the world’s population can’t digest milk,” says Dr. Scott Sicherer, professor of pediatrics at the Jaffe Food Allergy Institute at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York, and co-author of the 2009 book “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Dairy-Free Eating.” “Our bodies are not made to drink this stuff.”

CLICK TO SEE.Buffalow milk

Buffalo milk contains higher total solids than cow milk, which makes it thicker. Buffalo milk has 100% more fat content than cow’s milk, which makes it creamier and thicker. Due to high peroxidase activity (family of enzymes that are a catalyst for reactions), buffalo milk can be preserved naturally for a longer period. Buffalo milk contains more calcium, a better calcium to phosphorous ratio and less sodium and potassium which makes it a better nutritional supplement for infants. Cow’s milk is extremely rich in iodine. It has good amount of minerals like Calcium and Phosphorus.

 

CLICK & SEE……..Goat’s milk
The popularity in the U.S. of cow’s milk makes us a bit of an anomaly: Globally, goat’s milk is a far more popular drink.

But Americans may be getting a taste for it. Tracy Darrimon, director of marketing for Turlock, Calif.-based Meyenberg Goat Milk Products, the top producers of commercially available goat milk in the U.S., says that over the last four years the company has increased production more than 30% to keep up with demand.

Consumers choose goat’s milk because they perceive it as less allergenic, easier to digest and more healthful all round than cow’s milk. Some of those perceptions may be wrong. Since goat’s milk, like cow’s milk, is derived from mammals, “It’s much more likely to have similar effects on long-term health,” Kaiser’s Kushi says.

Consumers looking to avoid saturated fat and cholesterol, for instance, may do well to eschew whole goat’s milk: It has more saturated fat than cow’s milk and similar levels of cholesterol and is higher in calories and total fat. And goat’s milk, like cow’s milk, contains lactose. Though the levels can be slightly lower than those in cow’s milk, “It’s not enough to really make a difference if someone has lactose intolerance,” Bastyr’s Kazaks says.

In Europe, where goat’s milk consumption is far more common than in the U.S., a few studies have suggested that goat’s milk is less likely to cause allergies than cow’s milk. But Ohio allergist Dr. Julie McNairn, a spokesperson for the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology, doubts that this is true. She says the proteins triggering allergy to cow’s milk are very similar to those found in goat’s milk.

More than 90% of the time, people allergic to cow’s milk are allergic to goat’s milk, Sicherer adds: “If someone’s allergic to cow’s milk, I tell them to stay away from mammalian milks.”

Click & see…Sheep milk
Sheep milk (or ewe’s milk) is the milk of domestic sheep. Though not widely drunk in any modern culture, sheep’s milk is commonly used to make cultured dairy products. Cheeses made from sheep milk include the feta of Greece, Roquefort of France, Manchego from Spain, the Pecorino Romano (the Italian word for sheep is pecora), the Pecorino Sardo and Ricotta of Italy, and the ?bejna from Malta. Yogurts, especially some forms of strained yogurt, may also be made from sheep milk. Though sheep produce a far smaller volume of milk than cows, it is richer in fat, solids, and minerals. This makes it ideal for the cheese-making process.

It is a delicious and healthy alternative to cow’s milk. It is particularly popular among those with lactose intolerance because of sheep milk’s low lactose properties.

Sheep milk can be used in every way that cow’s milk can: over cereal, cooking, baking, and desserts. The taste is often preferred over cow’s milk bland taste.

There are several reasons that you should choose sheep milk over traditional cow’s milk:

*Taste: After trying sheep milk, many people often conclude that cow’s milk is “tasteless” whereas sheep milk is sweet and creamy. It is comparable to goat’s milk, yet sheep milk does not have the faint bitterness or tanginess of goat’s milk, which makes it a more preferable option. With all changes, sheep milk may take a little while to get use to, but after the initial trial stage many people come to prefer the rich taste of sheep milk over any other milk on the market. Therefore if you prefer a sweet and creamy treat any time of the day, sheep milk is a viable and healthy option.

*Digestion:Nearly 75 percent of the world’s population is considered to have a lactose allergy, or are “lactose intolerant”. Those with a lactose allergy have difficulty digesting cow’s milk causing symptoms such as gas and diarrhea. However, most people with lactose intolerance are able to drink and enjoy sheep milk without the symptoms because of sheep milk’s low lactose content. With sheep milk being used in cheeses and yogurts, those that are lactose intolerant now have more options to enjoy dairy products once again.

*Nutrition:It may be a surprise to learn that sheep milk is actually more nutritious than cow milk and even goat milk. Though it contains a high level of butterfat, it is lower in saturated fat than cow or goat milk.

CLICK & SEE……CAMEL MILK

Compared to cow, buffalo and ship or ewe milk fat, camel milk fat contains fewer short-chained fatty acids, but the same long-chained fatty acids can be found. Some researchers claim that the value of camel milk is to be found in the high concentrations of linoleic acid among other polyunsaturated fatty acids, which are essential for human nutrition.

Camel milk has a high vitamin and mineral content and immunoglobin content. The composition of camel milk depends on its feed and species: Bactrian milk has a higher fat content than dromedary milk.

Camel milk is low in lactose compared with cow’s milk. However, levels of potassium, magnesium, iron, copper, manganese, sodium and zinc are higher than in cow’s milk.

*Cholesterol in camel milk is lower than cow or goat milk.
*Camel milk is three times higher in vitamin C than cow’s milk and 10 times higher in iron.
*It is also high in unsaturated fatty acids and B vitamins but lower in vitamin A and B2 (than cow milk).
*Camel milk has more fat and protein than cow’s milk

Camel milk is believed to modulate the immune system. A study showed its ability to ameliorate allergies in children. (Shabo Y, Barzel R, Margoulis M, Yagil R., Camel milk for food allergies in children.) However, the sample size of this study is evidently small.

Camel milk is also used as a medicinal product in India. The Bedouins of the Middle East believe it to have curative powers.. Click & read> ..Diabetic? Try camel’s milk
CLICK & SEE…Donkey milk

Donkey milk is considered to be the closest to woman’s milk. It is very nourishing because it contains more lactose and less fat than cow’s milk.  It was used until the beginning of the twentieth century as a substitute to breast milk. The 1928 testimony of Dr. Charles Porcher (1872-1933) of the Lyon National Veterinary Institution showed that the practice was still used, to a lesser extent, in the interwar years:

It seems that we are getting back to ass milk to raise children in the earliest infancy, notably when the child is of delicate health. Ass milk has not been quite totally abandoned, but if 25 or 30 years ago, a few well looked-after asses were easily found in the city to provide milk nourishing young babies, it is no longer the case today.

More recently, studies have shown that that ass’s milk could serve as an alternative to cow’s milk for children allergic to bovine proteins.

It has several other medicinal and cosmetic uses

CLICK & SEE………...Soy milk
Because soy milk is made from a plant, it contains no cholesterol and negligible amounts of saturated fat: just half a gram per cup.

Compared with whole cow’s or goat’s milk, it is lower in calories too, but a glass still provides the same levels of key nutrients present in those milks, including calcium, protein, vitamin A, vitamin D and potassium. That’s partly because soybeans contain calcium, protein and potassium. But soy milk is also fortified to be nutritionally comparable to cow’s milk.

Soy milk’s lack of cholesterol and low levels of saturated and total fat have made it a popular choice for people looking to improve their heart health, says Stacey Krawczyk, a research dietitian with the National Soybean Research Laboratory at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. For the last 10 years, soy foods have been allowed to bear the FDA-approved claim that a low-fat, low-cholesterol diet containing 25 grams of soy protein per day may reduce the risk of heart disease.

Soy milk may have another benefit: In recent decades, several large population studies have suggested consuming soy may be linked to a lower risk of cancer, including prostate, colorectal and breast cancer.

But the relationship between soy milk consumption and cancer remains unclear — largely because most studies have focused on populations, such as those in Asia, that consume whole soy products, such as tofu, tempeh and edamame, as a large part of their diet. Studies on the general U.S. and European populations have not been able to replicate the findings, in part because soy consumption levels here are much lower, Kushi says.

This protective effect against cancer, if there is one, is thought to be at least partly due to estrogen-like compounds in soy that may compete with human estrogen in the body, hindering it from prompting the cell proliferation that can trigger cancer. But the link between soy consumption and cancer may invert in women after menopause, when natural estrogen levels plummet. “The evidence is still unclear,” Kushi says.

Soy can be a good dairy alternative for most people with allergies to cow’s milk. Soy allergies affect 0.4% of children — more common than most food allergies but far less common than ones to milk. Soy milk allergy in children is often outgrown. And though people allergic to cow’s milk are often likely to have another food allergy, the differences in the two milks’ proteins means an allergy to one doesn’t automatically translate into an allergy to the other, McNairn says.

Soy milk also lacks lactose, so it’s easier for people with lactose intolerance to digest it.

A downside? Because soybeans have an inherently bitter taste, soy milk is often heavily processed — and sweetened — to mask that flavor, says Kantha Shelke, a food chemist with the Chicago-based food-science think tank Corvus Blue. Sweeteners are often high on the list of ingredients in soy milks, adding sugar and calories that consumers might not be aware of. Still, with about 5 grams of sugar per cup, even the more sugary soy milks contain fewer sugars than the 12 grams per cup in cow’s milk. (Soy milks labeled “unsweetened” contain about 1 gram.)

Soy milk presents its own digestibility challenges, Kazaks says. The milk contains high levels of oligosaccharides, carbohydrates that are hard for the body to break down. “It can really cause a lot of gas in some people,” she says.

CLICK & SEE…......Almond milk
“With almond milk, it’s more about what you don’t get” than what you do, says Sam Cunningham, an independent food scientist and consultant specializing in nuts, who helped develop almond milk for Sacramento-based Blue Diamond Growers as an employee of the almond processor in the 1990s.

Like soy milk, almond milk contains zero cholesterol. It’s free of saturated fats, so it’s a healthful option for people with, or at risk for, heart disease. It doesn’t contain lactose, so it’s an option for people with lactose intolerance. And it’s even lower in calories and total fat than soy milk: a glass contains just 60 calories and 2.5 grams of fat to soy milk’s 100 calories and 4 fat grams.

But although almonds, among nuts, are a good source of calcium and protein, almond milk’s calcium and protein levels don’t compare to the levels in cow’s, goat’s or soy milks. A glass of almond milk provides just 1 gram of protein. Some brands provide up to 20% of the daily recommended calcium intake (about 10% less than the other milks), but other brands provide none.

Almonds are also a good source of iron, riboflavin, vitamin E and some essential fatty acids. A cup of the ground-up nuts contains more than 11 grams of omega-6 fats (but very few omega-3s).

In recent years, several studies have hinted at a link between nut consumption and lower blood cholesterol and a reduced risk of heart disease. Since 2003, the Food and Drug Administration has allowed almonds (and other nuts) to bear the claim that eating 1.5 ounces of nuts daily, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, may reduce risk of heart disease.

Still, nuts are one thing — almond milk is another. The fraction of almond milk that’s actually comprised of finely blended almonds varies between products and can be minimal, Kazaks says. In many commercially available almond milks, almonds are the second or third ingredient, after water and sweeteners. (The same is true for many soy milks as well.) So despite the high vitamin E and omega-6 content of almonds, a glass of almond milk may contain none of the vitamin and just 300 to 600 milligrams of the omega-6s.

Almond milk is a fine alternative for people allergic to cow’s and soy milks, Jaffe’s Sicherer says, but almonds pose their own allergenicity hazards. Allergies to tree nuts, including almonds, are among the top allergies in the population, affecting 0.2% of children. And although cow’s and soy milk allergies are often outgrown, nut allergies are more likely to persist.

CLICK & SEE……..Rice milK
Like almond milk, rice milk’s main advantages are what it doesn’t contain. It is free of cholesterol and saturated fat. It doesn’t contain lactose. Allergies to rice are rare.

In fact, rice milk manufacturers commonly promote their product as safe for people with any of a number of allergies or intolerances — including cow’s milk, soy and nut allergies, as well as lactose and gluten intolerance. (Gluten, found in wheat and other cereal grains, is not present in any of the milks mentioned here.)

Rice milk, like soy and almond milk, is formulated to contain levels of calcium, vitamin A and vitamin D similar to (albeit lower than) those in cow’s milk. But it is not a good source of protein, with just 0.67 grams per serving, and often contains more calories than almond or soy milk: about 113 calories per cup. Its vitamin E levels exceed that of cow’s, goat’s and soy milk but don’t compare with that of some almond milks.

One more thing rice milk doesn’t have: flavor in need of masking with sweeteners. “It’s a very mild-flavored product,” Corvus Blue’s Shelke says.

CLICK & SEE……….Hemp milk
Among plant-based milks, hemp milk is unique, and not just because the cannabis plant it’s made from poses legal challenges for farmers.

A glass of hemp milk contains the same number of calories as soy milk, one-third to one-half of the protein, but 50% more fat: 5 to 6 grams. However, most of the fats in hemp milk are omega-3 and omega-6 essential fatty acids, key for nervous system function and healthy skin and hair. Certain omega-3 and omega-6 fats also appear to reduce inflammation and lower blood lipid levels.

Plant oils typically have an excess of omega-6 fats relative to omega-3s — and the hemp seed is no exception. A cup of hemp milk (which is made from the “nut” of the hemp seed but can also contain some of the hull) often provides about 1 gram of omega-3s and 3 to 4 grams of omega-6s. Still, that level of omega-3s is high for plants, making hemp milk a useful source of them — especially given that American diets typically provide too few omega-3 fats and too many omega-6s.

In fact, some nutrition experts recommend a dietary ratio of omega-3s to omega-6s of between 1:1 and 1:3, a ratio that occurs naturally in hemp milk.

But the story is more complicated than that. It is unclear whether the predominant omega-3 fat in hemp, alpha linolenic acid (ALA), has the same heart-health benefits of those found abundantly in fish oils (known as EPA and DHA for short), says William Harris, director of the Cardiovascular Health Research Center at the University of South Dakota.

Like soy milk, hemp milk is low in saturated fat and cholesterol-free. It’s also free of lactose, and allergies to hemp are rare. Christina Volgyesi, vice president of marketing for Portland, Ore.-based Living Harvest Foods, which makes hemp milk, says the milk is made from different cannabis varieties than those used to produce marijuana, and contains none of the mind-altering active ingredient THC.

Hemp milk contains many of the nutrients found in cow’s milk (including calcium, vitamin A and vitamin D) since it’s fortified. In fact, some brands provide 40% to 50% of the daily recommended allowance of calcium, as compared with the 30% found in cow’s milk.

Nutritionally, hemp seeds are similar to flax seeds, which have become increasingly popular sources of essential fatty acids in recent years. But not all seeds rich in the fats lend themselves to a palatable milk alternative.

“Flax milk would probably be dark brown,” Shelke says. “We are probably not prepared to drink something dark brown in color.”

Unless, of course, it’s chocolate milk — be it of cow’s, goat’s, soy, almond, rice or even hemp.
Resources:
The Los Angeles Times
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Camel_milk
http://www.diffen.com/difference/Buffalo_Milk_vs_Cow_Milk
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sheep_milk
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ass%27s_milk_%28Donkey%27s_milk%29

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Mare’s Milk to Ease Gut Ache

Mare’s milk is being tested as a treatment for inflammatory bowel problems, such as ulcerative colitis.  …..CLICK & SEE

CLICK TO SEE
This follows an earlier study which showed that the milk from horses reduced eczema symptoms by an average of 30 per cent.
The same study found that the patients also had higher levels of ‘good’ bacteria after treatment. Good bacteria are thought to have an antiinflammatory effect, as well as boosting the immune system.
In the latest German trial, conducted at the University of Jena, patients were given either 250ml of mare’s milk or a placebo daily for two months. Those who had the milk suffered less abdominal pain and needed less medication.
It’s not clear what is in the milk that is beneficial, but the researchers believe it ‘could improve the well-being of patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis’.

Other Health Benefits:

Toward the end of the 19th century, kumis had a strong enough reputation as a cure-all to support a small industry of “kumis cure” resorts, mostly in southeastern Russia, where patients were “furnished with suitable light and varied amusement” during their treatment, which consisted of drinking large quantities of kumis. W. Gilman Thompson’s 1906 Practical Diatetics reports that kumis has been cited as beneficial for a range of chronic diseases, including tuberculosis, bronchitis, catarrh, and anemia. Gilman also says that a large part of the credit for the successes of the “kumis cure” is due not to the beverage, but to favorable summer climates at the resorts. Among notables to try the kumis cure were writers Leo Tolstoy and Anton Chekhov. Chekhov, long-suffering from tuberculosis, checked into a kumis cure resort in 1901. Drinking four bottles a day for two weeks, he gained 12 pounds but no cure.

 

Nutritional properties of mare’s milk
87.9% of Inner Mongolians are lactose intolerant. During fermentation, the lactose in mare’s milk is converted into lactic acid, ethanol, and carbon dioxide, and the milk becomes an accessible source of nutrition for people who are lactose intolerant.

Before fermentation, mare’s milk has almost 40% more lactose than cow’s milk According to one modern source, “unfermented mare’s milk is generally not drunk”, because it is a strong laxative.    Varro’s On Agriculture, from the 1st century BC, also mentions this: “as a laxative the best is mare’s milk, then donkey’s milk, cow’s milk, and finally goat’s milk…”; drinking six ounces (190 ml) a day would be enough to give a lactose-intolerant person severe intestinal symptoms.

You may click to learn more about  Mare’s milk……(1)…….(2)……(3)


Resources:

Mail Online. Aug.21.2009
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kumis

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Food Intolerance

Definition:
Food intolerance or food sensitivity is a negative reaction to a food that may or may not be related to the immune system or to food poisoning. It can be caused by the absence of specific chemicals or enzymes needed to digest a food substance, or to the body’s responses to certain food constituents (chemicals) both natural or artificial.

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Not to be confused with food allergies, a food intolerance can cause various symptoms including bloating, abdominal pain and diarrhoea. It is an adverse reaction to some sort of food or ingredient that occurs every time the food is eaten, but particularly if larger quantities are consumed.

This isn’t the same as a food allergy, because the immune system isn’t activated. Neither is it the same as food poisoning, which is caused by toxic substances that would cause symptoms in anyone who ate the food.Food intolerance doesn’t include psychological reactions to food either.

Symptoms:
Symptoms of food intolerance vary greatly, and can be mistaken for the symptoms of a food allergy. While true allergies are associated with fast-acting immunoglobulin IgE responses, it can be difficult to determine the offending food causing an intolerance because if the immune system is involved, the response is likely to be IgG mediated and takes place over a prolonged period of time. Thus the causative agent and the response are separated in time, and may not be obviously related. A deficiency in digestive enzymes can also cause some types of food intolerances. Lactose intolerance is a result of the body not producing enough lactase used to break down the lactose in milk. Gluten intolerance results in damage to villi in the small intestine, which makes it difficult for the body to absorb water and nutrients from foods. Another type of food intolerance is an intolerance to food chemicals such as salicylates or salicylate sensitivity. Salicylates are chemicals that can occur naturally in many foods. Salicylate sensitivity causes many symptoms the most common of which are: hives, stomach pain, head aches, mouth ulcers, and it has even been linked to ADD and ADHD.

Food intolerance can exist as a separate condition or contribute to the symptoms of complex syndromes such as Chronic Fatigue Syndrome CFS/CFIDS, Myalgic Encephalomyelitis ME, Post-Viral Fatigue Syndrome PVFS and may involve causes such as Leaky Gut Syndrome. For these reasons diagnosis is best carried out by experienced practitioners.

Symptoms of a food intolerance include gas, intermittent diarrhea, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, skin rashes, migraine headaches, and an unproductive cough.

Food intolerances are rarely harmful but may cause unpleasant symptoms, including nausea, bloating, abdominal pain and diarrhoea, which can begin hours or days after eating or drinking the food in question.

The severity of symptoms varies depending on the amount of enzyme the person makes and how much of the food has been consumed. In alcohol intolerance, there may be intense flushing of the skin, nausea, palpitations, headache and feeling faint.

Causes:
Food intolerance occurs when the body is unable to deal with a certain type of foodstuff. This is usually because the body doesn’t produce enough of the particular chemical or enzyme that’s needed for digestion of that food.

For example, one of the most common types is intolerance of cow’s milk, which contains a type of sugar called lactose. Many people have a shortage of the enzyme lactase, which is normally made by cells lining the small intestine. Without this enzyme they can’t break down milk sugar into simpler forms that can be absorbed into the bloodstream.

Lactose intolerance can cause symptoms very similar to irritable bowel syndrome.

Another common example is a deficiency of an enzyme called alcohol dehydrogenase. Drinking even small amounts of alcohol can make affected people feel unwell.

Some people have adverse reactions to chemical preservatives and additives in food and drinks, such as sulphites, benzoates, salicylates, monosodium glutamate, caffeine, aspartame and tartrazine.

The lack of a specific enzyme in the body may lead to the build up of toxic byproducts and histamine, which then mimic the symptoms of an allergy. This is called a ‘pseudo-allergic’ reaction.

Who’s affected?

There’s a strong genetic pattern to food intolerances. Lactose intolerance is less common among northern and western Europeans (10 to 15 per cent are affected) than in Asian, African, native American and Mediterranean populations (70 to 90 per cent are affected).

Babies are usually born with higher levels of lactase, so lactose intolerance usually only begins after the age of about two, as the body begins to produce less of the enzyme. But many people don’t experience symptoms until they’re much older. A temporary lactase deficiency may follow gastroenteritis, especially in children.

Alcohol intolerance is common among Asian people – 50 per cent are affected.

Diagnosis:
Diagnosis can include elimination and challenge testing, clinical investigation is generally undertaken only for more serious cases, as for minor complaints not affecting lifestyle the cure may be more inconvenient than the problem. Treatment can involve avoidance, and re-establishing a level of tolerance.

Individuals can try minor changes of diet to exclude foods causing obvious reactions, and for many this may be adequate without the need for professional assistance. For reasons mentioned above foods causing problems may not be so obvious. Persons unable to isolate foods and those more sensitive or with disabling symptoms should seek expert medical and dietitian help. The dietetic departments of teaching hospitals is a good start. (see links below)

Guidance can also be given to your general practitioner to assist in diagnosis and management. Food Elimination Diets have been designed to exclude food chemicals likely to cause reactions and foods commonly causing true allergy problems and those foods where enzyme deficiency cause symptoms. These elimination diets are not every day diets but intended to isolate problem foods and chemicals. Avoidance of foods with additives is also essential in this process.

Individuals and practitioners need to be aware that during the elimination process patients can display aspects of food addiction, masking, withdrawals, and further sensitization and intolerance. Those foods that an individual considers a ‘must have everyday’ are suspect addictions, this does include tea, coffee, chocolate and health foods and drinks, as they all contain food chemicals. Individuals are also unlikely to associate foods causing problems because of masking. Where separation of time between eating and symptoms occur. The elimination process can overcome addiction and unmask problem foods so that the patients can associate cause and effect.

Lactose intolerance can be tested for more thoroughly using a lactose tolerance test, a hydrogen breath test and a stool acidity test. Your doctor can arrange these and other food intolerance tests if necessary.

Click to see:->Food Intolerance Test

Food IntoleranceTreatment:

Food intolerance can be managed simply by cutting the food out of your diet. Babies or younger children with a lactose intolerance can be given soya milk or hypoallergenic milk formula instead of cow’s milk.

It takes around 5 days of total abstinence to unmask a food/chemical, during the first week on an elimination diet withdrawal symptoms can occur but it takes at least 2 weeks to remove residual traces. If symptoms have not subsided after 6 weeks, food intolerance is unlikely involved and a normal diet should be restarted. Withdrawals are often associated with a lowering of the threshold for sensitivity which assists in challenge testing, but in this period individuals can be ultra sensitive even to food smells so care must be taken to avoid all exposures.

After 2 or more weeks if the symptoms have reduced considerably or gone for at least 5 days then challenge testing can begin. This can be carried out with selected foods containing only one food chemical, so as to isolate it if reactions occur. In some countries such as Australia purified food chemicals in capsule form are available to doctors for patient testing, these are often combined with placebo capsules for control purposes. (see link below) This type of challenge is more definitive. New challenges should only be given after 48 hours if no reactions occur. Or after 5 days of no symptoms if reactions occur.

Once all food chemicals are identified a dietitian can prescribe an appropriate diet for the individual to avoid foods with those chemicals. Lists of suitable foods are available from various hospitals and patient support groups can give local food brand advice. A dietitian will ensure adequate nutrition is achieved with safe foods and supplements if need be.

Over a period of time it is possible for individuals avoiding food chemicals to build up a level of resistance by regular exposure to small amounts in a controlled way, but care must be taken, the aim being to build up a varied diet with adequate composition.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Food_intolerance
http://www.bbc.co.uk/health/conditions/foodintolerance1.shtml

Colic

Definition:
Colic is when an otherwise healthy baby cries more that three hours a day, for more than three days a week, between ages three weeks and three months. The crying usually starts suddenly at about the same time each day. This is actually just an arbitrary definition made years ago . By this definition, a surprising number of babies actually would have colic: some experts have even estimated as many as half of all babies!

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If your baby is crying a lot, you should call your doctor. Your pediatrician will want to check your baby to make sure there is no medical reason for the crying. If your baby’s doctor finds no underlying cause, then they will probably say your baby has colic. Colic is perfectly normal, and does not mean there is anything wrong with either baby or parents. Colic can be distressing for both you and your baby. But take comfort in the fact that it’s not permanent. In fact, in a matter of weeks or months — when your baby is happier and sleeping better — you’ll have weathered one of the first major challenges of parenthood.It does not have any lasting effects on the child or the mother in later life.

Signs and symptoms:

The baby’s cry is loud and they may have a red face and a tense, hard belly, because the abdominal muscles tighten with crying. Baby’s legs may be drawn up and fists clenched. This is often just the typical baby crying posture. However, the first time your baby has a long jag of inconsolable crying like this—with a tense, hard belly—you should call your doctor. This can sometimes be a sign of a serious condition that requires medical attention.
A fussy baby doesn’t necessarily have colic. In an otherwise healthy, well-fed baby, signs of colic include:

*Predictable crying episodes. A baby who has colic often cries about the same time every day, usually in the late afternoon or evening. Colic episodes may last anywhere from a few minutes to three hours or more on any given day. The crying usually begins suddenly and for no clear reason. Your baby may have a bowel movement or pass gas near the end of the colic episode.
*Intense or inconsolable crying. Colic crying is intense. Your baby’s face will likely be flushed, and he or she will be extremely difficult — if not impossible — to comfort.

*Posture changes. Curled up legs, clenched fists and tensed abdominal muscles are common during colic episodes.
*Colic may affect up to about 25 percent of babies. Colic usually starts a few weeks after birth and often improves by age 3 months. Although a few babies struggle with colic for months longer, colic ends by age 9 months for 90 percent of babies.

Causes:
No one really knows what causes colic. Researchers have explored a number of possibilities, including allergies, lactose intolerance, an immature digestive system, maternal anxiety, and differences in the way a baby is fed or comforted. This last idea speculates that Baby’s immature nervous system can’t handle the stimuli of everyday life, and that crying is their only way of communicating this “overload.” An opposite hypothesis is that Baby needs more stimulation, and gets it through crying. Colic is mysterious, but not harmful to your baby. et it’s still unclear why some babies have colic and others don’t.

Diagnosis:
Your baby’s doctor will do a physical exam to identify any possible causes for your baby’s distress, such as an intestinal obstruction. If your baby is otherwise healthy, he or she may be diagnosed with colic. Lab tests, X-rays and other diagnostic tests aren’t usually needed.

Treatment:
Colic improves on its own, often by age 3 months. In the meantime, there are few treatment options. Prescription medications such as simethicone (Mylicon) haven’t proved very helpful for colic, and others can have serious side effects.

A study published in January 2007 suggests that treatment with probiotics — substances that help maintain the natural balance of “good” bacteria in the digestive tract — can soothe colic. More research is needed, however, to determine the effects of probiotics on colic.

Consult your baby’s doctor before giving your baby any medication to treat colic.

Risk factors:
Infants of mothers who smoke during pregnancy or after delivery have twice the risk of developing colic.

Many other theories about what makes a child more susceptible to colic have been proposed, but none seem to hold true. Colic doesn’t occur more often among firstborns or formula-fed babies. A breast-feeding mother’s diet isn’t likely to trigger colic. And girls and boys — no matter what their birth order or how they’re fed — experience colic in similar numbers.

Popular Myths related to colic?
Let’s debunk some of the popular myths about colic. Here are the facts:

*Babies do not cry to manipulate their parents.
*Holding babies and picking them up when they cry cannot “spoil” them.
*We do not know whether colicky babies are in pain or not, but they sure seem to be, and that can really stress out parents. Keep in mind that your baby may not actually be in pain or distress, but just doing what they need to do for their immature nervous systems.
*Giving rice cereal does not help solve colic.
*Studies have shown that Simethicone (Mylicon) and lactase (the enzyme that helps digest lactose—the sugar in cow’s milk—which is in breast milk if the mother consumes dairy products) do not help colic. ,
*Sedatives, antihistamines, and motion-sickness medications, like dicyclomine (Bentyl) are NOT safe or effective in treating colic in babies. Often grandparents will suggest these medications. They were commonly used years ago, but now we know better.

Self Care:

Your baby’s doctor may not be able to fix colic or make it go away sooner, but there are many ways you can try to soothe your baby. Consider these suggestions:

  • Feed your baby. If you think your baby may be hungry, try a feeding. Hold your baby as upright as possible, and burp your baby often. Sometimes more frequent — but smaller — feedings are helpful. If you’re breast-feeding, it may help to empty one breast completely before switching sides. This will give your baby more hindmilk, which is richer and potentially more satisfying than the foremilk present at the beginning of a feeding.
  • Offer a pacifier. For many babies, sucking is a soothing activity. Even if you’re breast-feeding, it’s OK to offer a pacifier to help your baby calm down.
  • Hold your baby. Cuddling helps some babies. Others quiet when they’re held closely and swaddled in a lightweight blanket. To give your arms a break, try a baby sling, backpack or other type of baby carrier. Don’t worry about spoiling your baby by holding him or her too much.
  • Keep your baby in motion. Gently rock your baby in your arms or in an infant swing. Lay your baby tummy down on your knees and then sway your knees slowly. Take a walk with your baby, or buckle your baby in the car seat for a drive. Use a vibrating infant seat or vibrating crib.
  • Sing to your baby. A soft tune might soothe your baby. And even if lullabies don’t stop your baby from crying, they can keep you calm and help pass the time while you’re waiting for your baby to settle down. Recorded music may help, too.
  • Turn up the background noise. Some babies cry less when they hear steady background noise. When holding or rocking your baby, try making a continuous “shssss” sound. Turn on a kitchen or bathroom exhaust fan, or play a tape or CD of environmental sounds such as ocean waves, a waterfall or gentle rain. Sometimes the tick of a clock or metronome does the trick.
  • Use gentle heat or touch. Give your baby a warm bath. Softly massage your baby, especially around the tummy.
  • Give your baby some private time. If nothing else seems to work, a brief timeout might help. Put your baby in his or her crib for five to 10 minutes.
  • Mix it up. Experiment to discover what works best for your baby, even if it changes from day to day.
  • Consider dietary changes. If you breast-feed, see if eliminating certain foods from your own diet — such as dairy products, citrus fruits, spicy foods or drinks containing caffeine — has any effect on your baby’s crying. If you use a bottle, a new type of bottle or nipple might help.

If you’re concerned about your baby’s crying or your baby isn’t eating, sleeping or behaving like usual, contact your baby’s doctor. He or she can help you tell the difference between a colic episode and something more serious.

How you can help your baby relieve their colic distress?

Colic usually starts to improve at about six weeks of age, and is generally gone by the time your baby is 12 weeks old. While you are waiting for that magic resolution, try these techniques to help soothe your infant:

  • Respond consistently to your baby’s cries.
  • Don’t panic and don’t worry. If you are worried, bring your baby to their pediatrician.
  • When your baby cries, check to see if they are hungry, tired, in pain, too hot or cold, bored, over-stimulated, or need a diaper change.
  • Some parents find that carrying their baby more reduces colic. You can try different baby carriers to make it easier and free your hands. Many parents (and babies!) love slings once they get the hang of them—but sometimes it takes a little experimentation. One study found carrying babies four to five hours a day resulted in less crying at six weeks of age, as compared to carrying them only two to three hours a day. On the other hand, a later study by the same researcher did not find significantly less crying in babies carried more. So your best bet is just to see if it makes any difference with your baby.
  • Vacuum while wearing your baby in a baby carrier.
  • Rock your baby.
  • Change formula. Talk with your baby’s doctor first.
  • Breastfeeding moms can try changing their diets. In a recent study , researchers found that taking out allergenic foods (cow’s milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, wheat, soy and fish) from the breastfeeding mom’s diet reduced crying and fussing in babies under 6 weeks.
  • Play music and dance with your baby.
  • Talk a walk with your baby in the stroller. This can really help with your stress level, in addition to soothing your baby.
  • Get support from family, friends, your religious community, neighbors, etc. Let them help in any way possible.
  • Take care of yourself and manage your stress. Eating a well-balanced diet, getting sleep and exercise, and having people to talk to can do wonders. If the stress or blues become too much, it’s good idea to get professional help. Your or your baby’s doctor might be able to help you figure out where to start.
  • Nurse your baby every 2-3 hours if you are breastfeeding.
  • Don’t smoke, and don’t allow anyone to smoke around your baby. Babies of smokers cry more, and get sick more often, too. Smoker’s babies also have an increased risk of SIDS.
  • Quitting smoking during pregnancy may reduce the likelihood that your baby will develop colic . in addition to all the other benefits to you and your baby.
  • You could try a device that attaches to the crib. It’s designed to simulate a car ride, but it is not clear that the device actually works. The Sleep Tight Infant Soother consists of a vibration unit that mounts under the crib and a sound unit that attaches to the crib rail. Your pediatrician can tell you whether it would be a good idea to try in your baby’s case. The device is not promoted directly to consumers. Some insurance companies may reimburse the cost if you have a physician prescription. You can reach the manufacturer at 1-800-NO-COLIC or 1-800-662-6542. There is no research to prove that the Sleep Tight works, and some parents have been dissatisfied with it.
  • Provide white noise, such as running the vacuum cleaner, clothes dryer, or hair dryer near your baby while in their car seat. (Do not put your baby on top of the dryer—they could fall off!) White noise machines are also available. White noise simulates the whooshing sound your baby heard constantly while in utero. You can also do your own “whooshing” or “shushing” with your voice as you rock or carry your baby.
  • Go for a car ride.
  • Massage your baby. Find out how to do infant massage for colic. Massage has many benefits for both the baby and the giver of the massage.
  • Some parents have found that herbal tea is helpful. The combination of chamomile, fennel, vervain, licorice, and balm-mint was found to be effective in one study. Other traditional herbs for colic tea include anise, catnip, caraway, mint, fennel, dill, cumin, and ginger root. Gripe water, available in Britain and Canada, is made from dill. These remedies are not produced or regulated in the same standardized ways that medications are—so you don’t know exactly what you are getting. These herbs have not all been studied, and therefore it is not certain that they are all safe. More research is needed to be sure these preparations are safe and effective. If you choose to give herbal tea, start by giving only an ounce, and never give more than four to six ounces per day. Babies who fill up on tea don’t drink enough breast milk or formula and then have trouble growing. Please remember that just because something is “natural”, it is not necessarily safe.

Places where you to get more information about colic:
On the Web:

Recommended reading:

  • The Happiest Baby on the Block: The New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Baby Sleep Longer, by Harvey Karp
    This book teaches you simple techniques based on other cultures where babies do not get colic, and on the idea a baby’s first three months are like a fourth trimester.
  • Check out the chapter on colic in the book, The Holistic Pediatrician (second edition), by Kathi Kemper.
  • Infant Massage: A Handbook for Loving Parents, by Vimala Schneider McClure
  • Crying Baby: Resource List—recommended books about soothing crying babies.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.

Resources:
http://www.med.umich.edu/1libr/yourchild/colic.htm
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/colic/

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Baby Colic

Definition:Colic is a form of pain which starts and stops abruptly.

Spasmodic pain in the adomen in infants,accompained by irritability or crying. Colic also refers to condition of gas or the digestive irritability in infants up to three months old. It is often due to alkaline, high-sodium internal conditions, but can also be caused by overfeedin, awallowing of air, or emotional upset.
Infant colic (also known as baby colic and three month colic) is a condition in which an otherwise healthy baby cries or screams frequently and for extended periods, without any discernible reason……………….CLICK & SEE

The condition typically appears within the first two weeks of life and almost invariably disappears, often very suddenly, before the baby is three to four months old . It is more common in bottle-fed babies, but also occurs in breast-fed infants. The crying frequently occurs during a specific period of the day, often in the early evening.

Since the cause is not conclusively established and the amount of crying differs between babies, there is no general consensus on the definition of “colic”. Having ruled out other causes of crying, a common rule of thumb is to consider a baby “colicky” if it cries intensely more than three days a week, for more than three hours, for more than three weeks in a month.

From the age of about 3 weeks, many babies start to cry vigorously at approximately the same time each day, usually in the evening. This crying sounds different from crying at other times, and the baby may also draw up his or her legs. During these episodes, the baby will usually not respond to any form of comfort, such as feeding or holding, for more than a few minutes. the baby may continue crying for up to 3 hours.

Although the may appear to be in pain, colic is not due to an illness, and the crying does not cause permanent harm. However, parents may find the condition distressing. Episodes of crying that do not have this pattern are not called colic. The cause of colic is unknown, and it is thought to be due to abdominal pain or gas. however, crying may be worsened by tiredness, an unsettled environment, or a baby’s temperament.

Causes

There is no commonly accepted explanation for colic. Traditionally, colic was ascribed to abdominal pain resulting from trapped gas in the digestive tract. This theory is not yet discredited, and some recent scientific evidence seems to support it, yet it is no longer universally accepted as the general cause.

There is solid and mounting evidence that the causes are related to gut flora, from multiple studies which have shown that colicky babies have different gut flora patterns, which includes a lack of Lactobacillus acidophilus. Some of these studies suggest the administering of a probiotic, such as Lactobacillus acidophilus, will improve the condition. Probiotics have been shown to improve other conditions associated with colic, such as lactose intolerance, necrotizing enterocolitis, and gastric inflammation. In addition to that probiotics have been shown to generally improve the health of children who take them.

Some doctors claim that it is a combination of a baby’s sensitive temperament, the environment, and its immature nervous system which makes him/her cry easily and without control. Others believe that it originates in problems in the baby’s digestive system, specifically because of the buildup of gas which cannot be released. New studies at the Colic Clinic at Brown University demonstrate that nearly half of babies with colic have mild gastroesophageal reflux. Some cases may be the result of lactose intolerance.

Recent research raises a number of hypotheses including the onset of melatonin production by the pineal gland (which does not begin until 12 weeks of age, about the time colic seems to disappear), circadian rhythms,and smoking and stress of the mother in the third trimester.

Because of the links between prenatal stress, birth trauma, maternal stress etc, and colic, it has also been suggested that some ‘colic’, or excessive crying may actually be a healthy stress release requiring support and facilitation rather than suppression or ‘cure’.

Treatment
There is currently no generally-accepted medical treatment for colic, and the approach taken by medical professionals varies substantially from country to country and indeed from doctor to doctor. Many believe that the condition is currently untreatable, and is best left to run its course. Other doctors prescribe simethicone, which treats trapped gas; some parents report that this is effective, but for many others it is not, and research suggests that it is not useful.

One study showed a moderate success when infants with colic were treated with dicyclomine, an anti-spasmotic drug commonly found in some anti-diarrheal medications.

Other studies have found success with probiotics such as Lactobacillus reuteri, which were intended to reduce gas.

Gripe water is believed by some to relieve the symptoms associated with baby colic, teething and baby’s gas.

In addition to herbal teas it is believed that the organoleptic effects of certain herbs can help calm and relieve colic symptoms.

Scientists warn that further studies are necessary before any specific cure should be recommended.

There is general agreement that soothing measures, such as pacifiers, listening to white noise and rocking, are often effective in calming the baby during crying periods. Also known as the “cuddle cure”, the five S’s are known as Swaddling, placing the baby on their Side or Stomach, Swinging the baby, making a Shhh sound in the baby’s ear, and giving the baby something to Suck on. Some parents take turns holding the baby upright (which may reduce the pain and crying) to enable the other parent to catch up on sleep. Babies with lactose intolerance or reflux cry harder and longer when left to lie on their backs, but parents are not advised to put the baby to sleep on their front as it is considered a risk factor for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

Various tactics, such as changes in diet or routine, an increase in fresh air or certain herbal teas, are popularly believed to cure colic. There is also the theory that rubbing warm olive oil on the hands and feet, then rubbing the stomach with olive oil in a clockwise motion will cure colic. While some of these may help in certain cases, none of them is known to be universally effective. The widespread belief in them may be partly due to the suddenness with which colic naturally resolves itself. Many parents keep trying different approaches until the colic suddenly stops, at which point they presume that the last thing they tried was the cure.

Some breastfed babies have problems digesting milk proteins, or have a milk protein sensitivity(milk allergy) due to the mother’s diet. The proteins from cow’s milk are able to pass through the mother’s milk to the baby. Because baby’s intestines are still developing this sensitivity causes gas that is extremely painful. It can also cause the excessive spitting up and reflux. It can be helped with reflux medication, but not cured. The only cure is to have the mother completely avoid all milk products, even foods with traces of milk. Although this has been documented, it is still under debate. This is because La Leche League experts agree that there is already enough stress on a new breastfeeding relationship without having to deal with radical diet changes as well, and blaming the mother’s milk for baby’s malady puts pressure on mother to wean unnecessarily. Formula may actually be more harmful than helpful in this situation, and will not cure the colic.

In cases where ‘colic’ or excessive crying is possibly the infants innate healing mechanism helping them to recover from birth trauma or other past or current stress, appropriate holding and facilitation techniques may be able to increase the effectiveness of the release process and reduce the overall amount of crying time needed. In any case parents may benefit from learning these techniques, as this can help them to cope better psychologically with their child’s distress, and to feel more empowered in the midst of an extremely trying situation.

Click to learn Ten Effective and Comprehensive Tips to Help Your Colicky Baby

Natural Herbal Remedy for Colic
Childhood Colic – American Institute for Preventive Medicine

Click for Homeopathic remedy of baby colic ……………...(1).….(2)….(3)……(4)

What might be done?
You should try to arrange your day so you can comfort your baby when he or she is crying. If you have problems coping and require advice and support, consult your baby’s doctor. You should also consult the doctor if your baby develops additional symptoms, such as fever, which may indicate an underlying infection. the doctor will examine your baby and exclude other causes of the crying. Occasionally, he or she may suggest that you try giving your baby an over-the-counter remedy to relieve the colic. however, the treatment is only helpful in some cases. Colic disappears suddenly, on its own, usually when a baby reaches about 3 months of age.

Disclaimer: This information is not meant to be a substitute for professional medical advise or help. It is always best to consult with a Physician about serious health concerns. This information is in no way intended to diagnose or prescribe remedies.This is purely for educational purpose.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baby_colic
http://www.charak.com/DiseasePage.asp?thx=1&id=321

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