Have you ever wondered, “should I go lactose-free (LF) or dairy-free?” If so, you’re not alone. There’s a growing curiosity behind choosing a lactose-free diet. Our clients often bring up questions about dairy, such as: 

  • Could dairy be causing my inflammation
  • Is my bloating caused by the lactose in the foods I’m eating? 
  • Could there be a relationship between my acne and dairy foods? 

It’s understandable that questions may arise. But, there are many unfounded myths that surround dairy and lactose. Dairy is often wrongly accused! We recommend not to avoid a food group based on suspicion; yet lactose intolerance is quite common impacting over 30-50 million Americans. 

What is Lactose? 

Lactose is the sugar within milk. With a lactose intolerance or allergy, the body is not able to digest lactose. Going lactose-free might help relieve symptoms, but removal of all dairy products may have unintentional consequences. Dairy contributes important nutrients such as protein, calcium, magnesium, vitamin D, and potassium. 

Do You Need to Ditch Dairy? 

If you’re avoiding lactose for lactose-intolerance purposes, we have good news. You may not have to avoid all dairy products to be lactose-free or lactose-low! 

There are many ways to still enjoy dairy. Did you know? 

  • Dairy foods have varying levels of lactose that make some of them more tolerable than others. For example you may tolerate cheese while ice cream causes uncomfortable side effects. 
  • You can take an enzyme to digest dairy foods. Enzymes, such as Lactaid, can be taken before you eat dairy to help with digestion. 
  • Lactose-free dairy foods, such as Prairie Farms’ LF milk, taste great and provide the same nutritional value
visual of dairy foods on spectrum from low to high lactose, butter is at the low end and milk is at the highest end
chart of dairy rich foods and corresponding lactose amounts

Expanding Your Dairy Lineup with Prairie Farms 

two gallon jugs of prairie farms lactose free milk, one container of lactose free sour cream and one container of lactose free cottage cheese

As a proud Midwest company, we support our friends from Prairie farms who recently launched their line of locally-produced and locally-sourced lactose-free products. Not only do they offer milk without lactose, but they’ve also got cottage cheese and sour cream minus lactose, too! With these products, you can be assured that they have the same nutritional value and versatility as their regular dairy foods. Prairie Farms’ lactose-free dairy options provide nutrients like calcium, vitamin D and protein minus the lactose. 

Where to Purchase Prairie Farms Lactose-Free Foods

In the Midwest? You can find Prairie Farms dairy foods at Schnucks as well as Wal-Mart and Dierbergs. You can also find a “where to buy” search function on their page as well!

Lactose & Fancy Free

While they’re many reasons to go lactose-free, it’s important to ensure your dairy-free diet still contains the important nutrients the milk, cheese and yogurt contain. Choosing lower lactose dairy foods as well as LF items, such as those available from Prairie Farms, are wonderful options to make that happen. 

Concerned you might still need support? Our team of dietitians can analyze your diet to assess any nutrient deficiencies and aid in improving your nutritional status.