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Eat Better Feel Better

The IBD-AID Diet: Dairy and Milk Alternatives

Monday, May 06, 2019
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The four components of the IBD-AID diet include:

  1. Probiotics
  2. Prebiotics
  3. Good Nutrition
  4. Avoidance

Avoidance of certain foods is important to “starve” the bad bacteria present in the gut. Lactose is a sugar found in dairy products such as milk and cheese and when there is lack of lactase, the enzyme to break down the sugar, the bad bacteria can feed off the undigested lactose. This can lead to increased symptoms such as diarrhea. Avoidance of lactose is a key component of the IBD-AID diet.

Plant-Based Milks

There are several dairy milk alternatives on the market today that can replace dairy, as desired. These plant-based milks are enriched and fortified with calcium and vitamin D making them great alternatives. When choosing milk alternatives always select the “Unsweetened” variety with no added sugar. Also, be sure to check the ingredients list and avoid products containing these emulsifiers:

  • Carrageenan
  • Maltodextrose
  • Polysorbate 80
  • Carboxymethyl cellulose

Non-Dairy Milks available (nutrition information based on 8oz serving):

Almond Milk

35 calories 1g protein 3g fat

Soy Milk

100 calories 9g protein 5g fat

Coconut Milk

45 calories 0g protein 4.5g fat

Oat Milk

90 calories 3g protein 1g fat

Hemp Milk

70 calories 2g protein 6g fat

Flax Milk

25 calories 0g protein 2.5g fat

Cashew Milk

90 calories 0g protein 8g fat

Pea Protein Milk

100 calories 8g protein 4.5g fat

Other Dairy Foods

There are also several non-milk dairy foods that naturally do not contain lactose that can be consumed. These foods are great sources of probiotics as well and promote the good bacteria present in the gut! These foods include:

  • Dry curd cottage cheese or fermented/cultured cottage cheese
  • Kefir - plain
  • Yogurt plain - regular low fat or Greek

What about cheese?

Cheese can be a source of saturated fat which should be limited. Aged hard cheese such as cheddar, parmesan, Swiss, and provolone are OK as they are often very low in lactose.