Breath Testing at Home

Could Lactose Intolerance be All in Your Head?

by admin on April 8, 2012

Many people connect gastric distress with the consumption of dairy products and assume they are lactose intolerant.  However, a research study conducted in Milan, Italy suggests that only one-third actually have lactose intolerance.  In the study, 102 subjects with self-reported lactose intolerance were tested using the hydrogen breath test which is used to diagnose the condition.  The patients  filled out a psychiatric questionnaire asking about depression, anxiety and other symptoms of mental stress.  The hydrogen breath testing showed that only one third of the subjects had lactose intolerance, but upon analysis of the questionnaire, the researchers found that patients with stress-related issues were more than four times as likely to report being lactose intolerant, compared with other people. When someone believes they are lactose intolerant, they often avoid dairy leading to a dangerous lowering of their calcium and vitamin D intake.  Therefore, direct testing of this condition, using the hydrogen breath test, should be recommended before dairy avoidance is adopted.

Reference: Time Magazine May 2011

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