Most of the foods available today contain milk and some traces of it. This is the reason why people with milk allergies find it difficult to find foods that would not cause allergic reactions. They have to be extremely careful with what they eat. Milk is divided into two components. Curd is the part that usually forms chunks wherein 80% of milk’s protein is found. Whey is the watery part of milk and contains the remaining 20% of milk proteins. Allergies occur when the body detects milk proteins to be intruders rather than as a nutritional source.
The immune system then releases armies of antibodies that promote the release of histamines. This greatly affects the body, thus, causing allergic reactions on the skin, the gastrointestinal tract, and the respiratory tract.
Symptoms of Milk Allergy
The allergic reactions associated with milk include skin irritations that may present it in forms of red and quite bumpy rashes, often referred to as hives. There may be symptoms of eczema and red swelling of the lips or the areas surrounding the mouth. Milk allergies symptoms in the gastrointestinal tract may cause stomach cramps, nausea, dizziness, diarrhea, and vomiting.
The respiratory tract is also affected during occurrences of allergies. It can cause a runny nose, itchy and watery eyes, as well as sneezing that somehow triggers coughing and wheezing associated with asthma. In sever cases, anaphylaxis might even occur. This is when the mouth, throat, as well as the air passages start to swell causing difficulty in breathing. Progression of this condition may lead to anaphylactic shock.
Like any other food allergies, symptoms with regards to milk allergy may occur within minutes or even hours after it has come in contact with the person allergic to it. It is important to remember that an allergy with milk is different from lactose intolerance. With the allergy, the body does not accept milk proteins at all whether it is taken orally or if the body is exposed to a certain product that contains milk. Intolerance has something to do with the digestive system’s lack of enzymes responsible for breaking down milk proteins.
What and What Not to Eat
People should be aware of what to eat with a milk allergy. This may mean that they should refrain from eating food with milk such as pizza, ice cream, cakes, and the likes. Other foods that should be strictly avoided are butter, margarine, pastries, creams, cheeses, chocolate (although there are some that are completely dairy free), creamer, condiments like mayonnaise and mustard, tuna and chicken broth, cold cuts, and most breads.
Allergy to milk products may mean that most of the available food today should be avoided. However, there is no reason to feel sad because there are many delicious alternatives to these prohibited foods. A dairy free diet can still include milk but not those derived from cows. Milk, cheese, and ice cream made from soy, oat, or rice are alright and the great thing is that each one comes in their own different flavors. You can get your daily calcium from calcium-fortified juices. You can add broccoli, sardines, and almonds in your diet, too.
Aside from knowing what a dairy free diet should consist of, people with milk allergy should also be careful about eating out. Unless you want to ask the server all the time about which meals in the menu contains dairy products, you can just avoid eating in most restaurants and fast food chains altogether. Restaurants that serve Asian cuisine are recommended because they rarely make use of dairy products in their recipes, except for ice cream and some cakes. Your best option is to head to the salad bar and bypass the cheeses and any milk based dressings.