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Lactose Intolerance Diet

Lactose intolerance diet is lactose-free diet that is especially formulated for the people experiencing problem in digesting lactose. Lactose is defined as a natural sugar mainly present in all kinds of milk, be it goat, cow or human milk.

‘Lactase’ is an enzyme present in the body by birth that starts decreasing as age increases. The main function of this enzyme is to help in digesting milk lactose. In adulthood, when the enzyme stops being produced or is produced in less quantity the lactose digestion become difficult and causes lactose intolerance. Though severity and symptoms of lactose intolerance differ in individuals, the main symptoms are diarrhea, stomach-pain, cramps in stomach and even vomiting. However, either complete elimination of milk and milk products or limited consumption of these foods is the key factor kept in mind while formulating lactose intolerance diet.

Lactose Intolerance Diet: Recommendations

Lactose free diet is the main solution for inhibiting the symptoms of lactose intolerance. It is suitable for people of all age-groups. Another thing that should be kept in mind while following a lactose-free diet is the adequate supply of calcium. Milk and milk products abundantly provide calcium to the body and restriction of these foods may cause calcium deficiency. However, various vegetables, fruits and other food items are good for calcium needs. Here are a few points that should be taken care of while suffering from lactose intolerance:

  • High amount of lactose is present in dairy products, hence all kinds of milk should be avoided.
  • Sour cream, processed cheese, condensed milk, milk powder, yogurt and ice cream all are milk products that contain the same amount of lactose as milk. Therefore, these are either eliminated or restricted from the diet.
  • Though butter, cream cheese, swiss, cottage and cheddar cheeses contain small amount of lactose, they can be sparingly used as few lactose intolerant people can tolerate these food items.
  • Some people can experience the lactose intolerance symptoms even after consuming breads and cereals that contain little amount of lactose.
  • Lactose is sometimes used as a sweetener in chocolates and sweetened drinks. Therefore, labels should be read before purchasing these items.
  • Calcium-rich diet is extremely necessary in this situation. Vegetables, fruits and even calcium supplements can be effectively included in lactose intolerance diet.
  • The protein rich foods, such as meats, poultry and seafood can be enjoyed in this diet.

Suggested Lactose Intolerance Diet Plan


Lactose-free milk, non-dairy creamer, Soy milk, rice milk

To avoid: Aged cheese, condensed milk, Buttermilk

Breads and Starches

Breads without milk, breads containing milk, Pasta, noodles, potatoes, rice and Whole-grain breads

To avoid: muffins, milk cakes and milk pancakes


Margarine without milk and Butter, oils, salad dressings

To avoid: butter, cream cheese, creamy dips

Fruits & Vegetables

Fresh fruits & vegetables, juices and baked fruits and vegetables dishes

To avoid: Creamed vegetables, fruit smoothies

Meats/Meat substitutes

Fresh cooked meats, poultry and fish, Soy products, tofu, eggs and peanut butter

To avoid: creamed meats, batter-fried meats, cheesy meat pizza and egg Soufflés containing milk

Soups and seasonings

Gravies, clear soups and broth without milk

To avoid: chowder, cream soups and white sauces

Desserts and sweets

Jams, jellies, pureed fruit bars, gelatin desserts without cream and milk, desserts made with soy and rice

To avoid: Cream and milk desserts, ice cream, pastries and toffees

Note: Recommended foods should be consumed in limit and diet plan should be followed with an expert advice.


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