Lactose content in products


I was recently diagnosed with lactose intolerance by my doctor.
That’s why I now try to avoid products that contain lactose.

Lactose is milk sugar, so if a product does not contain sugar, does it theoretically not contain lactose ??

I am confused about this product…

Proteins|THE Nutrition® Sports Nutrition (

Casein usually contains a lot of lactose, but this product says it has 0 sugar… So does that mean it’s lactose free ??

Hi airmT - I’m sorry you’ve had that diagnosis. As I am sure you are finding, there are so many products which have milk products in them, often where you wouldn’t expect. Most of the people close to me are extremely lactose sensitive so we have to be super-careful. For the most part if an ingredient originates from milk (whey, casein…the list goes on and there is a pretty comprehensive one here Milk Allergy Avoidance List {Dairy Products List} - Make It Dairy Free)
Zero sugar does not mean there is absolutely none in, it can mean that there is none detectable or it is below a limit which is set by local standards bodies - an analogy is alcohol-free beer which can contain up to 0.5% EtOH in the UK. So sugar-free is always a relative term and depending on your sensitivity, residual lactose sugar in a product can cause distress.
You may be able to use a laccase product to clean up any residual lactose sugar in whatever you are drinking/eating - but you will have to look for what is available in your country, good luck

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One of our daughters is lactose intolerant and thrives - it depends how severe your reaction to it are and how much you can tolerate.
You want to avoid foods that have milk in bold on the ingredients listed. You may be ok with foods that list “may contain milk” or be produced in a place where milk products are used.
Getting back to your question lactose is the sugar from milk and dairy products so if something listed sugar and not milk or a milk derivative you should be fine. Good example here in the UK Oreo Cookies are dairy free. They do have lots of sugar in them…its the third thing listed on the label. Our daughter can eat them without any reaction. Give her something with milk in and if it gets over her tolerance level its puke city.
If I were you I’d look/aim for dairy free products. There are some good plant based substitutes - oat milk cappuccino for example.
You can also look at the milk ladder which is a way to test how tolerant you are and see if you can re-introduce milk products. Baked products with milk as an ingredient are the starting point.
Maybe talk to a dietition (the one with a degree if uk based and you can get referred by your doctor) for advice too if you’re worried about not getting enough of something in your normal diet.
Best of luck.

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