Understanding the difference
As dairy allergies can be severe, it is very important to understand the difference between dairy allergies and lactose intolerance. A medical diagnosis and ongoing professional management is essential for a dairy allergy.
Dairy allergies are an immune system response to cow’s milk proteins. Dairy allergies occur in only 4% of the population, primarily in infants and young children.
Key differences between lactose intolerance and dairy allergies
|Lactose Intolerance||Dairy Allergies|
|Trigger||Small amounta of dairy can normally be tolerated without symptoms.||Even trace amounts of dairy can cause a reaction.|
|Symptoms||Symptoms are related to gastric upset – excess bloating, gas or flatulence, abdominal discomfort, and diarrhoea.||Many symptoms are the same as those for Lactose Intolerance – stomach pain, nausea and diarrhoea. In addition, allergic reactions are systemic (body-wide) and may include an itchy rash or hives, runny nose, swelling of the lips or throat, coughing, wheezing or difficulty breathing.|
|Management||Consumption of dairy can be managed with enzyme supplements or reducing intake of dairy. Continued exposure to dairy does not make the condition or symptoms worse.||Allergic reactions can be very severe, even life threatening, and often get worse with continued exposure to the allergen. Strict avoidance of milk proteins is normally recommended.|