Lactose and your training

Learning how to overcome intolerances to lactose.

When training with a condition such as being lactose intolerant it can be difficult to try and manage your diet and still be achieving effective results with your training goals and efforts.

So what does being lactose intolerant actually entail? Intolerance to anything can mean a lot of distress and self management of problems but in particular being intolerant to lactose can be really hard as many foods contain lactose such as milk, cheese, yoghurt and certain protein supplements even. So what's the issue with consuming lactose when you are intolerant?

Well the problem arises when you consume the natural sugar and your body rejects it. This can come in the form of something quite basic like an irritable bowl and go as far as a skin irritation or rash because of the presence of lactose. The resulting issues can vary and it is because the body cannot break down this occurring sugar and therefore rejects it with symptoms such as excessive wind it diarrhoea.

Lactose intolerance can be an issue for people who workout as the aim is to build strong muscles with strong bones and the ability to gather the calcium from foods like milk and cheese becomes almost to do. Without calcium levels being high in your diet it can affect your ability to strengthen bones. So how can you as a fitness enthusiast go about gaining enough calcium and protein being intolerant to lactose?

A big part of this can immediately begin supplementing your diet with things such as high strength calcium tablets and vitamins making up for the deficit you may experience with not taking it in naturally from your food. Another interesting thing to keep an eye on when considering your protein intake especially is the amount of whey protein you are consuming. If you are struggling with keeping whey supplements down in your system you might want to swap it out for a whey isolate supplements as the difference between the two is quite staggering and research has shown that those with an intolerance to lactose have prospered from going onto an isolate intake.


The key points -

Whey protein lactose percentage

Anywhere between 63-75%


Whey isolate lactose percentage

Anywhere up to 0.6%


As you can see the difference between whey protein and isolate is staggering with the levels of present lactose differing massively. This is why some who struggle to digest the lactose will move to an isolate formula in order to cut out a huge portion of naturally occurring sugars that they simply cannot break down and use effectively. So why not take a look at how your diet differs when you change the protein source and switch to the isolate if you are currently working with a whey solution.

Having an intolerance to lactose can be seen as a bad thing but just try to figure what your body can handle with certain intakes of foods high in calcium and what you simply cannot process. It's all about trial and error and is about learning to listen to your body’s needs and wants. Work around your gaps with smart supplementation and you should be on the way to success and your training goals will benefit in the long run also. With a little learning and dose of research you can beat anything.


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