Can Lactose Intolerance Cause Constipation – Find Out Here!

Lactose intolerance is a  digestive problem common in children and impacts not only patient’s everyday life but also their families. It is the inability to break down lactose, a sugar found in milk and milk products. It is a reaction in your digestive system to lactose, but not as dangerous as other health conditions.

It comes due to the lack of enzyme lactase, which helps to complete the digestion of whole milk. Lactose intolerance causes several symptoms after you eat dairy products, such as bloating, diarrhea, gas trouble, etc. The symptoms may vary based on the physical condition of an individual. In some people, lactose intolerance can cause even constipation.

You may have doubts regarding how lactose intolerance affects constipation, their relationship, etc. The article analyses how lactose intolerance cause constipation and other symptoms associated with this digestive problem. Before getting into the topic, let’s know about constipation.

Can Lactose Intolerance Cause Constipation

What is Constipation?

Constipation is a condition of having difficulty in passing stool and it remains in the colon for too long. It is a common gastrointestinal problem faced by most people. The condition mostly occurs due to changes in diet or fiber deficiency.

A person who has constipation might have experienced dry bowel movements accompanied by blood and cough. This condition occurs when your colon absorbs too much water.

Normally the food moves through the large intestine, and the colon absorbs water while forming the stool. When the waste moves slowly through the digestive tract, it cannot be eliminated effectively from the rectum. The slow muscle contraction absorbs the water and makes the stool solid. 

The symptoms of constipation may vary depending on the physical status of an individual. A person who has constipation might experience the following symptoms. 

large intestine
  • Abdominal pain
  • Painful bowel movements
  • Feeling Uncomfortable
  • Dry and hard stool 
  • Lethargy
  • Decreased appetite

What are the 4 types of Lactose Intolerance? 

Lactose intolerance occurs when your small intestine stop making enough of the enzyme lactase. When your lactose didn’t break down, the undigested lactose moves into the large intestine and interacts with the bacteria that are present in that area.

It causes several gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, etc. Lactose tolerance is also known as lactase deficiency. 

There are four types of lactose intolerance, such as 

  • Primary lactose intolerance
  • Secondary lactose intolerance
  • Congenital or developmental lactose intolerance
  • Developmental lactose intolerance

Each type of lactose intolerance has several causes.

  • Primary lactose intolerance

This is a common type of lactose intolerance. This type of condition might occur due to the normal result of aging. People need enough amount of lactase to digest milk and dairy products. But the amount of lactase may gradually become less over time. It happens due to aging, and a more diverse diet. The gradual decline of lactase is called primary lactose intolerance.

  • Secondary lactose intolerance

This type comes due to illness, injury, or possibly surgery. Any of these can affect the amount of lactase. Celiac disease and Crohn’s disease are common intestinal diseases that are associated with lactose intolerance. The lactase level can be restored by treating these disorders. 

  • Congenital or developmental lactose intolerance

This is a very rare type of lactose intolerance. It’s a genetic disorder that happens when no lactase is produced from birth. In this type, the baby will be intolerant of breast milk. Baby will have diarrhea as soon as human milk is introduced. The condition can be manageable by giving the baby a lactose-free infant formula.

  • Developmental lactose intolerance

This type of lactose intolerance occurs when a baby is born prematurely. Compared to other types, it can last for only a short time. 

Can Lactose Intolerance cause Constipation?

Lactose intolerance is a digestive disorder that occurs when the body cannot digest lactose. Lactase is an essential enzyme that helps to break down lactose into glucose and galactose. When the body lacks the amount of lactase, it can’t digest lactose properly which ultimately results in lactose intolerance. A person with lactose intolerance cannot digest milk and any dairy products. 

Lactose Intolerance cause Constipation

In some cases, lactose intolerance can cause constipation. But it is a rare symptom associated with this condition. Constipation and the symptoms of lactose intolerance are connected. People with lactose intolerance might have experienced gas or bloating.

People think that the bacteria in dairy products produce gas trouble. The excess gas trouble affects the food that passes through the intestines, and this slow-down process causes constipation. 

What are the other symptoms caused by Lactose Intolerance?

As aforementioned, the symptoms of lactose intolerance vary. Some of the common gastrointestinal symptoms related to lactose intolerance are,

  • Vomiting
  • Nausea
  • Diarrhea
  • Abdominal cramps
  • Gas
  • Bloating
  • Discomfort
symptoms of Lactose Intolerance

In some people, lactose intolerance doesn’t show any symptoms or they may experience minor ones, such as bloating or gas while in others it may also lead to conditions, such as osteoporosis. Osteoporosis is a condition that occurs due to calcium deficiency.

People with osteoporosis have weak, porous bones. People who do not consume a proper amount of calcium are more prone to this health condition. Taking a high amount of calcium-based food is the solution that helps you to avoid osteoporosis. In addition, people can also take calcium supplements.

However, it’s better to seek advice from healthcare professionals before choosing any supplements. 

How can you control Lactose Intolerance symptoms?

You can follow a number of ways to control lactose intolerance symptoms. In most cases, it can be controlled by a proper diet like limiting or avoiding foods and drinks that contain lactose. This method is only possible for people who need to limit the amount of lactose they drink or eat, while others may need to avoid lactose completely.

Consuming lactase supplements can help to manage the symptoms associated with lactose intolerance. Lactase supplements are available in both tablet and drop forms. When you consume lactose products, it helps to break down the lactose in foods and drinks and lowers the chance of getting lactose intolerance symptoms. If you consider any lactase supplements, take advice from your health physician before actual use. 

Also Read : Lactose Intolerance Pills – Is It Safe To Use?

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