Raw Milk Is No Better for the Lactose Intolerant

Researchers oppose popular belief
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 13, 2014 12:58 PM CDT
Raw Milk Is No Better for the Lactose Intolerant
Raw milk, a study says, is no better for lactose-intolerant people than the pasteurized kind.   (Shutterstock)

Among lactose-intolerant people—who make up some 30% of Americans, according to Medical Daily—raw milk has become a popular alternative to the pasteurized stuff. The FDA says it's no better for them, and it warns that raw milk can actually be fatal, Time reports. Are raw-milk advocates right? A new study says no. Researchers had 16 self-identified lactose-intolerant subjects drink three kinds of milk: raw, pasteurized, and soy. All were vanilla-flavored so participants couldn't identify them, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Over an eight-day period of consuming the milk varieties, subjects were tested for malabsorption; they also reported their allergy symptoms, Time notes. After a weeklong break, they tried another type of milk for eight days. In the end, there was "no evidence that raw milk is better tolerated by adults positive for lactose malabsorption, either objectively or subjectively," researchers say. They acknowledge, however, that more than eight days might be necessary to account for adjustment to raw milk. Meanwhile, the Daily Mail points to the genetics behind lactose intolerance, noting that it was found in a 7,000-year-old man. (Read more lactose stories.)

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