Just because you or yours have a lactose intolerance doesn’t mean that you can’t have ice cream and other dairy products! Minus the Moo is a premium ice cream made with local New England dairy, available in variety of artisan flavors – lactose free! Not only is Minus the Moo lactose free, but it takes ice cream back to basics, using an entirely custom mix made from pure, locally sourced ingredients free of harmful chemicals and additives. I sat down with Katy, the co-founder of Minus the Moo, to find out more about lactose intolerance and to learn about popular milk products that don’t have lactose.
1. What is lactose intolerance?
Lactose intolerance is the inability to digest lactose, the sugar naturally found in milk. People who suffer from lactose intolerance cannot make any or enough lactase, which is the enzyme responsible for breaking down lactose.
2. How can you tell/diagnose it in parents and kids?
In my experience the best way for me was to eliminate lactose completely for 1 week and reset my system. The next week, when I reintroduced food that contained lactose, the message was pretty clear. Please email me separately for the gory details, if you must. I am happy to share my tale, if it will help prevent the pain and agony that I experienced from not knowing I was lactose intolerant for so long!
The other way to determine if you are lactose intolerant is to talk to your health care provider about taking the “breath” test. This test must be taken on an empty stomach. It requires you to drink a lactose-containing substance in increments and then breathe into a device that will allow the provider to determine how much hydrogen you are giving off in your breath. That may sound “sciencey,” but let me really talk nerdy to you – There are typically very low levels of hydrogen found in your breath but elevated levels of hydrogen indicate increased levels of gas in the system… i.e. a storm is occurring within. Your body is trying to give off the gas, that makes your stomach hurt and makes you want to lay down, in any way it can. After 2 hours and some potential gastrointestinal distress, you will have a very clear answer as to whether it is lactose that is the culprit!
3. Is lactose the same as a milk allergy?
Lactose intolerance is not the same thing as having a milk allergy. Lactose intolerance is the body’s inability to break down lactose, the sugar found in milk where as a milk protein allergy is something very different. For someone who is allergic to milk proteins or more specifically casein & whey, if they ingest milk it will cause their immune system to overreact. These reactions can range from mild symptoms such as hives, itching etc. to severe symptoms, such as wheezing, difficulty breathing or result in anaphylaxis. If a person has a milk protein allergy they should be very careful not to consume milk.
4. What are common alternatives/substitutes for people with lactose intolerance?
Minus the Moo! All the flavors!
– Sea Salt Chocolate Chip
– Mint Chip
– Sour Cream
– Cream Cheese
– Coffee creamer (Half & Half)
There of course is always the dairy-free alternatives. These products are made with soy, almond, coconut milk etc, but I still prefer items that are real dairy, lactose-free.
5. What motivated you to start Minus the Moo?
Minus the Moo started because I love ice cream. Growing up it was a treat that my family and I always shared together. As I got older the thing I loved so much, stopped loving me back and I had to face the facts that I was lactose intolerant. Ice cream is something that is meant to be enjoyed and shared, I couldn’t imagine living the rest of my life not being able to eat the best ice cream I possibly could. Determined to fill the void in my life, I started making my own ice cream at home and dreamed of one day bringing my creations to market. I knew that other lactose-intolerant consumers had the same desire for real, creamy, premium ice cream too!
6. What makes your ice cream safe for people with lactose intolerance?
Great question! It may sound like a contradiction, but we use the enzyme lactase to break down the lactose. This way we can use all the traditional ingredients you love in ice cream like milk, sugar, eggs, and of course cream. It is called ice CREAM after all.
Are you as hooked as we are? Check out more about Minus the Moo on:
– Their Website