by Lana Aga
What exactly is it?
It is never inherited because babies must be able to digest breast milk or they cannot survive or get their necessary nutrients. Becoming lactose intolerant has to do with your diet, where you live, your age, and your ethnicity. However, the very rare case of an infant being born with lactose intolerance is called Cogenital Lactase Deficiency, and it only occurs in infants with the autosomal recessive pattern which is extremely rare.
How common is it?
Who is lactose intolerant?
How likely am I to get it?
How do I know if I have lactose intolerance?
No proteins are affected in lactose intolerant people, so doctors cannot diagnose lactose intolerance except by its symptoms. In fact, being tolerant of lactose is where proteins are affected (yet the change is so minor it is barely observed); children are born with lactase in order to digest breast milk, but this enzyme is usually lost on the way to adulthood. The few cases where it stays is a mutation, so being lactose intolerant is actually normal.
If I am lactose intolerant, what does my karotype look like?
There is also a pedigree showing that most lactose tolerant people have lactose tolerant children, and vice versa. Although affected through adulthood, lactose intolerance is also affected by genetics.
Can I never eat dairy again?
Doctors can determine lactose intolerance and its seriousness upon a specific person through a test involving lactose or a hydrogen breath test.