Late-onset “Lactose Intolerance”

I’m starting off slow this morning.  I was up until 3am finishing up a batch of cheddar curds and pressing my parmesan.  I really have to start earlier in the day with my cheeses!  We’ll see if I get around to any today.  I’d like to try making some Gouda.  I need to get back to my Gnowfglins course, so I’ll probably make some lacto-fermented mayo and hot sauce… and maybe some sourdough, chocolate brownies.  I also need to get ready for our Medicinal Herbs CSA drop-offs starting tomorrow and into the week-end.  The theme for this month will be natural mood enhancement and seasonal affective disorder…. normally,  ’tis the season… the weather has been nice though.  Anyone out there felt this yet this year?

So I wanted to share a little more about our raw milk experiences by talking about my dad- hi dad!  My dad used to drink milk like I drink water (which is a LOT).  His whole life he loved milk and I’m pretty sure he’s had both raw (when he was a kid) and pasteurized.  Around about the age of 50 he suddenly found he couldn’t have it anymore without getting sick.  Why is it that so many people “become” lactose intolerant after years of eating milk with no problem?  I see this pretty typically in my practice.  For someone with this late onset intolerance, it is not the milk at fault, but the pasteurization process.  When milk is pasteurized it destroys the enzymes (lactase chief among them) it naturally contains to help us digest lactose.  We can still ingest it obviously, it just causes irritation and inflammation in our digestive system.  By the time we reach 40-50, our body has had enough.  One day it just says “look, I’ve worked extra hard for years putting this through the system…. and I’m done!”  This late onset, coupled with the fact that they usually can eat butter and yogurt, is a great distinction between “pasteurization intolerance” and true “lactose intolerance” that usually starts at birth.  As a result of pasteurization intolerance, many of these people experience arthritis, high cholesterol and other inflammatory disorders along with their digestive upset.  At this point, most folks drop milk products from their diet.

Dropping pasteurized dairy from the diet is actually a good idea, but instead of alternative milks (which contain a lot of sugars and chemicals), some are switching to raw milk.  Understandably, this can be a scary trial if you have been getting sick after drinking store milk.  However, I have read about countless folks who make this switch successfully and have now seen it in my personal life.

My dad was reluctant to try raw milk.  He started with butter, then moved to cheese and ice cream and just this week tried milk straight out of the jar just like he used to.  He reports a mild reaction…. he’s not getting sick, but he’s sort of aware his body is working a little harder.  I will refer back to my post a couple days ago here.  I wouldn’t expect him to get noticeably sick, but I would expect his body to go through a very small healing crisis.  His gut flora is repopulating with some of the good bacteria that may have been missing or impaired.  Before long I expect he will be able to drink as much of Ruby’s milk as he wants without fear of reprisals.

Are any of you lactose intolerant after a lifetime of drinking pasteurized milk?  Have you tried raw milk?  If so, what was your experience?


About Dawn Combs @ Mockingbird Meadows

I am a stay at home mom, homesteader and practicing herbalist who owns and operates an herbal health farm. I raise bees and medicinal herbs and am passionate about teaching others how to use herbs for health in their everyday lives.
This entry was posted in Common Ailments, Homesteading, Weston Price Dietary and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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