What Is Milk Protein Intolerance

Milk Allergy Vs Lactose Intolerance

Cow’s milk protein allergy (CMPA) and lactose intolerance

The difference between a milk allergy and lactose intolerance is the involvement of the immune system. When a child has a milk allergy, the bodys immune system creates IgE antibodies to milk protein which lead to release of histamine and other chemicals that cause symptoms typical of allergic reactions

Lactose intolerance, on the other hand, involves more of the GI system. Those with lactose intolerance lack an enzyme that breaks down the sugars in milk and dairy products. This causes GI symptoms that may include nausea, cramps, gas, bloating and diarrhea.

Uses Dosage And Recommendations

Milk protein isolate is relatively cheap, versatile, and easy to add to your diet.

Its neutral flavor makes it easy to add to foods to boost their protein content. Thats a key reason companies often add milk protein isolate to protein supplements such as protein bars.

You could add milk protein isolate to smoothies, casseroles, cereals, and soups.

Because it digests slowly, milk protein isolate may be helpful to take before bed or right before a time period when youre likely to be without food. Your body will digest it over a longer period, helping you stay full.

That said, its perfectly fine to take milk protein isolate at any time of the day.

One way to take it is to mix 12 scoops of milk protein isolate powder with water and drink it close to bedtime.


Milk protein isolate is highly versatile and easy to incorporate into dishes due to its neutral flavor. Its high casein content makes it ideal as a nighttime protein supplement. However, you can enjoy it at any time of day.

What Are The Hidden Sources Of Milk

The proteins in milk can appear in some unexpected places, inadvertently exposing patients to this allergen. While one might expect milk or casein to be in baked goods, for example, casein might also be used in canned tuna, sausages, or meats. Milk protein is even found in chewing gum, on occasion.Reviewing the list of all ingredients in processed foods is the best way to avoid exposure to milk proteins. Patients can also compile a list of safe foods in consultation with their doctor.

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What Is The Cause Of Milk Protein Intolerance

The causative agents for milk protein intolerance are usually 2 proteins found in milk called casein and whey. They are present in varying amounts in all types of milk and products that are made from milk e.g. cheese.

Before I delve further into this topic, I need to make a very clear and important distinction. Cows milk protein intolerance is different to cows milk protein allergy.

Tips For Living Well With A Milk Allergy

Is It Cow
  • Find other ways to get vitamins and minerals. Dairy products are an important source of calcium, protein, and vitamins D and B12. If you or your child has a milk allergy, foods such as broccoli, spinach, and soy products can help fill the void. A registered dietitian can help you develop a well-balanced eating plan.
  • Try dairy substitutes. Drink soy, rice, oat, and almond milks that are fortified with calcium and vitamin D. Look for non-dairy ice cream, chocolate, cheese, and yogurt. Use margarines made with vegetable oil instead of butter. A tablespoon of vinegar in a cup of rice milk or soy milk works as a buttermilk substitute.
  • Be careful with kosher products. Some may contain milk protein, even those labeled “pareve,” which are considered milk-free under kosher guidelines.
  • Stay away from foods without labels, like from salad bars, deli counters, and bakeries. They’re more likely to accidentally have your allergy triggers in them.
  • Always read labels, even on things that you buy every week. Food companies change ingredients all the time. Just because something has been safe for you in the past doesn’t mean it always will be.
  • Ask your pediatrician about safe formula. If you have a baby with a milk allergy, the doctor may suggest an extensively hydrolyzed, casein-based formula.
  • Avoid milk outside the kitchen. Check labels on cosmetics, creams, and ointments to see if they contain cowâs milk in any form. Some medicines also contain whey, which is made from milk.

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Intolerance Vs Allergy: Whats The Difference

Milk protein allergy is the most common food allergy in infants.

But tummy troubles dont necessarily mean your baby has an allergy it could be an intolerance . Thats a common misunderstanding, Dr. Goldman says.

Sensitivity to dairy or soy. This is much more common than an actual allergy to milk and is what Dr. Goldman says she sees most often in her practice. Parents bring in an infant that is irritable and spitting up a lot, and they may see little flecks of blood in the stool.

This is frightening for new parents,but Dr. Goldman says you can easily resolve it by switching to a dairy- orsoy-free formula and avoiding dairy and soy yourself, if you are breastfeeding

Soy protein is similar to cow milk protein and often prompts a similar reaction in children who have this sensitivity, she says.

Milk protein allergy. An actual allergic reaction to milk protein is much less common. During an allergic reaction, an infants immune system sees milk proteins as a foreign material. It creates antibodies against the offending proteins, triggering the release of chemicals such as histamine.

With this cycle going on, your babyis likely irritable and may seem inconsolable. Symptoms may include:

  • Diarrhea
  • Vomiting or excessive spit ups
  • Blood in the stool
  • In severe cases, anaphylaxis, an emergency requiring immediate medical attention and a shot of epinephrine

What Is Cow’s Milk Protein Allergy

Cow’s milk protein allergy is an allergic condition which is triggered by drinking cow’s milk or by drinking or eating products made from cow’s milk.

It can cause:

  • Skin symptoms, such as rashes and eczema
  • Gut symptoms, such as feeling sick , being sick and abdominal pain
  • Breathing symptoms, such as a runny nose and wheezing.

The symptoms are often vague and sometimes it is very difficult for a definite diagnosis to be made.

Cow’s milk protein allergy occurs in about 7% of babies who have formula milk, but in only about 0.5% of exclusively breast-fed babies, who also usually have milder reactions. Exclusive breast-feeding may also protect babies from developing an allergy to cow’s milk protein after they are weaned.

Cow’s milk protein allergy is more likely in children who have other allergic conditions such as asthma, eczema or hay fever, or if close family members have those conditions.

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Examples Of Methods Of Analysis

Cow’s milk contains a number of different proteins. Caseins and the whey proteins lactoglobulin and lactalbumin are present in highest concentrations. Allergic individuals may react to one or several of these milk proteins. In addition, other proteins in cow’s milk have been associated with allergic reactions. The caseins are the dominating proteins in milk and constitute about 80 percent of the proteins. The caseins are heat stable and thus suitable for the analysis of milk/milk proteins in food. The whey proteins are the residual proteins in milk after removal of the caseins, i.e. about 20 percent of the proteins in milk.

Lactoglobulin is one of the proteins in the whey fraction. Lactoglobulin is not as heat stable as the caseins but can be used as a complement for the analysis of milk in food products. The caseins are a better indicator for the presence of milk/milk proteins in compound food products unless only the whey fraction was included in the product to be analyzed.

Sensitive commercial ELISA test kits are available for the analysis of casein or lactoglobulin. The limit of quantification varies somewhat between different test kits and depends also upon the matrix. The limit of quantification for casein is as low as 0.5 mg/kg in certain matrixes.

Accredited methods should be used in official control. The Swedish Food Agency is accredited for analysis of casein in food.

Is This A Life

Lactose Intolerance vs. Milk Protein Allergy – Dr. Elaine Barfield & Shara Wagowski, RD

Babies and young children outgrow CMA, usually by the time they turn one. 99% of CMA are resolved by six years old. Introducing dairy back into the diet typically happens around 9-12 months of age. If symptoms recur at that time, dairy should be removed again. Dairy can be reintroduced every three months thereafter until tolerated. Always consult your doctor or dietitian before reintroducing dairy in your child’s diet.

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Avoiding A Milk Allergy Reaction

If You’re Breastfeeding

If your breastfed infant has a milk allergy, talk to the allergist before changing your diet.

If You’re Formula Feeding

If you’re formula feeding, your doctor may advise you to switch to an extensively hydrolyzed formula or an amino acid-based formula in which the proteins are broken down into particles so that the formula is less likely to trigger an allergic reaction.

You also might see “partially hydrolyzed” formulas, but these aren’t truly hypoallergenic and can lead to a significant allergic reaction.

If you’re concerned about a milk allergy, it’s always best to talk with your child’s doctor and work together to choose a formula that’s safe for your baby.

Do not try to make your own formula. Commercial formulas are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and created through a very specialized process that cannot be duplicated at home. Other types of milk that might be safe for an older child with a milk allergy are not safe for infants.

If you have any questions or concerns, talk with your child’s doctor.

Milk Or Casein Allergy Treatment

If you are diagnosed with a food, or specifically milk or casein, allergy, your doctor may advise you to carry injectable epinephrine with you in case you accidentally eat a food containing casein and have a reaction. Your doctor or pharmacist can show you how to give the epinephrine. You may also want to keep an over-the-counter antihistamine on hand to help alleviate allergy symptoms. In the case of a severe or serious reaction, though, the antihistamine will not be effective. In that caxse, you need epinephrine, which is the same as adrenaline, the chemical your body produces at times of excitement or stress.

If you experience a severe allergic reaction with symptoms of anaphylaxis, give yourself the epinephrine to counteract the reaction until help arrives. Do not hesitate to use the epinephrine auto-injector, even if you arenât sure that you are having an allergic reaction. The medication wonât hurt and could save you. Call 911 for emergency help. Because up to one-third of anaphylactic reactions can have a second wave of symptoms several hours following the initial attack, you may need to be observed in a clinic or hospital for four to eight hours after the initial reaction.

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Cows Milk Protein Allergy In Babies

A cows milk protein allergy is the same as a cows milk allergy. A cows milk allergy typically develops when cows milk is first introduced into your babys diet, either in formula, or when your baby starts eating solids. More rarely, babies who are exclusively breastfed can develop a cows milk allergy. This happens because of the cows milk in their mothers diet passing to the baby through breastmilk2.

Its common for babies who are allergic to cows milk to be allergic to goats milk and sheeps milk, too. Thats because they contain similar proteins.

If you think your baby could have a cows milk allergy, its important to talk to your doctor to establish whether or not this is the case.

Managing Your Childs Cows Milk Allergy

How to spot Cow

When your baby is diagnosed with a cows milk allergy, its only natural to feel worried. But once you know the cause of your babys symptoms, you can take positive steps to keep them healthy.

Your GP will discuss the options for management with you, and you may be referred to a dietician to look at the foods your baby is eating6.

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Working With Your Doctor To Make A Diagnosis

Providing your doctor with as much information as possible about your babys symptoms will help them to make a diagnosis. The more evidence and information you can provide, the better.

Its a good idea to keep a diary of your babys symptoms, including when they occur and how long they last for, as this can help your doctor identify or rule out a cows milk allergy. For example, if your baby comes out in a rash after feeding, take a photo, make a note of how long it took for the rash to appear and how long it lasts. In addition, take a note of any vomiting, diarrhoea, stomach cramps or difficulty breathing, and when these happen in relation to eating, drinking or other activities.

Look particularly for two symptoms in two separate areas of the body, such as vomiting and a skin irritation. If this happens, be sure to inform your doctor and let them know if theres a history of allergies in your family.

Diagnosing And Treating A Milk Protein Allergy

Your doctor may do blood work tolook for signs of allergies in your babys system. But youll likely confirm amilk protein allergy through the process of elimination.

If youre breastfeeding, youll needto stop consuming products that contain dairy or soy. Then, for about twoweeks, you can pump and dump while you feed your baby either a hypoallergenic formula or one made of amino acids.

If your baby is on traditional formula, switching to one of those alternatives should improve his or her tummy issues after about two weeks.

In severe cases, your doctor might use a scope to look for allergic inflammation in your infants system. This typically is necessary only if your child cant gain weight or is in the hospital with the condition, Dr. Goldman says.

In some cases, your medical team may stop feeding altogether and give nutrition intravenously until its safe to slowly reintroduce a specialized milk- and soy-free formula or breast milk free from a mothers intake of milk.

If you think your baby may have amilk protein allergy, its important to seek treatment as soon as possible toavoid severe illness later on.

A small number of children may have long-term milk protein issues. But most outgrow the condition by the time they reach 18 months to 2 years old, Dr. Goldman says.

We see very few older children or adults with a milk protein allergy, she says. By that time, peanuts become the No. 1 allergen.

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Examples Of Cooked Curd Cheeses

Some other semi-hard to hard cheeses like Morbier, Cheddar and Manchego are made from larger curds that have been more gently heated. Overall, this process, coupled with a long maturation period, will reduce the whey protein content as well.

Does this mean that you wont get any reaction to the cheese? Not necessarily because the extent of the sensitivity varies from one person to the next. What it does mean though is that there are options that you can try in small amounts if you are craving cheese.

Do you have milk protein intolerance? Or know someone who does? Leave me a comment below.

How To Treat Milk Protein Intolerance

Cow’s Milk Protein Allergy in Babies (Dr. Marie-Josée Answers Common CMPA Allergy Questions)

Once you have confirmed your child has milk protein intolerance, it is important to learn how to manage it properly. Here’s what you can do:

1. For Breastfed Babies

If your baby has a milk allergy, it is important that you reduce the amount of dairy products you eat because it may transfer to your baby through your breast milk and may cause milk protein intolerance. Also, talk to your doctor about other alternative ways of providing your baby with enough calcium and nutrients.

2. For Babies Drinking Formula

If your baby is allergic to formula milk, you may consider switching to another formula, which should resolve the issue and the symptoms will go away completely in a couple of weeks. It is still important to give your baby a hypoallergenic formula until your baby is one year old.

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Moderate Symptoms Of An Intolerance

On the other hand, milk protein intolerance causes more mild to moderate symptoms such as skin rashes , swelling of the lips, face or eyes, stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhoea.

Whilst it is still caused by your bodys immune system reacting to casein, it is much less severe than an allergy and is not life-threatening. Moreover, this type of reaction tends to be more delayed and can appear a few hours after consumption.

Not All Reactions To Cows Milk Are Due To Allergy To Cows Milk Protein

Lactose intolerance: This is caused by the lack of the enzyme lactase, which helps to digest the milk sugar called lactose. Symptoms include diarrhoea, vomiting, stomach pain and gas . This condition is uncomfortable but not dangerous and does not cause rashes or anaphylaxis. Allergy tests to cows milk are negative in people with lactose intolerance. Diagnosis is by temporary elimination of lactose and reintroduction.

Milk, mucus and cough: Some people complain that when they drink cows milk or eat other dairy foods, that their throat feels coated and mucus is thicker and harder to swallow. Research has shown that these sensations occur with similar liquids of the same thickness and are not due to increased production of mucus.

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Milk Intolerance In Babies And Children

6-minute read

Some babies and children have a reaction when they drink cow’s milk or formula made from cow’s milk. This could be due to 2 things: a lactose intolerance or an allergy to milk. If your child has one of these conditions, you will have to alter their diet to cut down on milk or avoid it altogether.

  • wheezing or difficulty breathing
  • they are pale and floppy or unconscious

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