Milk and Yogurt For Those Who Are Dairy Intolerant Due to Casein Proteins

Welcome to the 390th Metamorphosis Monday!

I was away this weekend visiting family so don’t have a Before and After to share from home, but I do have an interesting discovery to share. During my visit I stopped by one of my favorite grocery stores in the area, Dorothy Lane Market. While shopping in Dorothy Lane, I overheard one of the product vendors talking with another customer about a milk they have for folks who are lactose intolerant or can’t tolerate the casein proteins in regular milk. My ears perked up since that’s definitely something I struggle with. I love milk but it doesn’t love me.

This was the milk they were discussing. It’s by Snowville Creamery and what makes it special is it’s from cows that have been tested and only have the A2 gene for beta-casein, not the A1 gene. Per Wikipedia, A2 milk is “cow’s milk that contains only the A2 type of beta-casein protein rather than the more common A1 protein found in regular milk.” From the little bit of research I’ve been able to do online, I learned that the A1 gene is a mutated gene and the milk we find and buy in grocery stores today is normally from cows with this mutated gene.

Yesterday while shopping at Dorothy Lane, I purchased a typical “gourmet” style yogurt I thought my son, grandson and DIL would enjoy. It was in a bottle and was a pourable yogurt. The flavor was Banana Mango and it looked like a rich milkshake.

I had a small amount once home and it was delicious, but I paid the price about an hour later with an upset stomach and stomach cramps. It almost kept me from going on a walk we had planned to the park that afternoon, but fortunately the “attack” didn’t last too long.

Later that evening after our trip to the park, I had a glass of Snowville milk from cows that have been tested and do not have the A1 gene. The result? No upset stomach at all. It was wonderful!

A2 Tested Milk

 

Feeling brave, I decided to try some of the Snowville yogurt I had purchased that is also made from cows without the A1 gene. Again, no tummy upset at all. Unfortunately, Snowville milk products are not available in Georgia where I live. I hope I can find someone in my area who sells milk products that come from A2 tested cows. I love milk and would love to enjoy it again, pain free.

Yogurt from A2 Test Cows

 

Here’s a blurb from Wikipedia explaining a bit more about the A1 vs A2 gene and the cows that carry these genes.

A1 and A2 beta-casein are genetic variants of the beta-casein milk protein that differ by one amino acid. The A1 beta-casein type is the most common type found in cow’s milk in Europe (excluding France), the USA, Australia and New Zealand. A genetic test, developed by the A2 Milk Company, determines whether a cow produces the A2 or A1 type protein in its milk. The test allows the A2 Milk Company to license milk producers once proven their cows produce only A2 beta-casein protein in their milk, to the exclusion of the A1 beta-casein protein type.

You can read more about the differences in A1 and A2 beta-casein milk proteins and the cows that carry these gene variants here: A2 Milk

Have you had an opportunity to try any milk products from A2 gene cows? If so, did you have any digestive upset afterwards? I wonder if Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s store carries A2 milk. Anyone know?

 

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Comments

  1. Sounds like your weekend visit was a success, not only with being with your son & family, but finding these products. I don’t have lactose intolerance, but I have family members who are, and know how hard it is for them. I’m sure it won’t be long before you find those products in your area, but it could take awhile before it would hit ours. Hope you have a great week, Susan, and thanks for hosting Met Monday.

    • Thanks, Rita! That’s what I was thinking, too…becoming such a common problem these days. I bet the milk/ice cream industry has noticed it in their sales.

  2. Thanks for hosting. 4 out of 5 in our family are lactose intolerant. It is crazy. I’d never even heard of it until 15 years ago. It certainly explains my childhood.
    Thanks for sharing.

    • Yeah, mine too. I remember first noticing the issue during my college years and never understood what was going on back then,

  3. Susan…
    I share your misery as I am also lactose intolerant. I have used successfully
    for years lactose free products made by Lactaid. They make milk, ice cream
    and cottage cheese that I have enjoyed very much. The ice cream comes in a variety of flavors and is delicious as is the milk which comes in all varieties of whole, skim, low fat, etc. So far I seem to be able to tolerate Oikos Greek Yogurt made by Dannon. Their salted caramel flavor is to die for…yummy!
    I doubt the Snowville product is available most places but we can hope.
    Do you ever try over the counter tablets one can use before consuming regular milk products? I hear they work but seem like too much
    inconvenience and trouble for me but some say they work for them. I would guess lactose intolerant products are becoming more available as there seem to be quite a few people, like us, who experience this problem in
    all age categories. Meanwhile, maybe we should consider getting one of those A2 cows tied up in the backyard and hire a milkmaid instead of
    a cleaning lady.

    • I wish I could drink the lactose free milk but I just don’t like how sweet it is. I probably would like the ice cream since ice cream is always sweet anyway.
      I wonder if Oikos Greek Yogurt is made with milk from A2 cows, that would be an interesting thing to look up. 🙂
      I have tried to tablets but you have to take several tablets, depending on much lactose type food you’re eating. And the pills can be pretty expensive. Also, it doesn’t seem to always work well for me. It’s helps, though.
      lol about the cow! 🙂
      I hope I can find the A2 milk once I get back to my area and start looking for it.

  4. Barbara Schneider says:

    Having lactose intolerance myself, I found this very interesting. I have been buying Green Valley Organics lactose free yogurt, sour cream and cream cheese. I’ve also bought Traderspoint pourable yogurt from grass fed cows that I seem to be able to tolerate as part of my smoothies. I will definitely look for this. I find that traveling is more challenging with lactose intolerance. Have you found this to be the case with all your traveling Susan?

    • Yeah, I definitely have because so often foods and sauces have milk or cream in them and you don’t realize it. It is harder to control what you’re eating when you’re traveling so I was really worried we’d have lunch somewhere and then be on a long bus drive back and I’d have an attack. I started taking a probiotic every day a year or two ago and that helped a lot. Fortunately, on most of the trips, you’re always near a bathrooms when touring places.

  5. Thanks so much for hosting each week!
    Hugs,
    Debbie

  6. I too am L.I. and have never heard about the A1 and A2 gene. Fascinating! I will look for it at my grocery stores. Thank you so much.

  7. Wow, I’ve never heard about this A1/A2 gene information! Thanks so much for sharing! Also, thank you for once again hosting the link party. It’s a highlight of my blog-reading week to come and look at all the great articles that folks share here. Have a great day! -Jenny

  8. Very interesting!….and I can see why the A1 gene cow is not in France as they are so very much against most common fertilizers and GMO’s…could that be why? The cows in France are also very beautiful!….Thanks for hosting and hope you had a great visit with your family!

    • I think I read that the A1 gene that some cows have is actually a mutated gene, so I think the A2 is the traditional, older breed of cows. That does make sense about France. You know, the entire time I was on the cruise in Holland and Belgium, I never had any tummy issues. They told us that ship’s chefs used a lot of local food wherever we docked. Maybe the creams/cheeses they used from that area were from A2 cows. Would be interesting to know! Thanks, Shirley!

  9. Gorgeous party this morning, Susan. Thanks so much for hosting each week. It’s appreciated!

  10. I’ve bought Snowville yogurt at Whole Foods here in MD. I don’t have lactose issues, but love their yogurt. I’ll share your info with friends that have lactose issues. Thanks for sharing.

    • Their rep in the store said she thought they went as far south as Washington, DC, but I will check my Whole Foods just in case though. Thanks, Sherri!

  11. I have seen products in the grocery store that say something like lactose free milk. Have you seen/tried those? I also believe that there is an over the counter pill called Lactaid which you can take before drinking milk. Have you tried that?

    • I have tried the lactose free milk, but it tasted a bit too sweet for me. I googled to read why and found this explanation: “Lactose-free milk tastes sweeter than regular milk because the milk sugar lactase is broken down into two simple sugars, galactose and glucose. Simple sugars taste sweeter on your tongue than complex sugars.”
      I have used the Lactaid in the past but it doesn’t always work very well, at least not for me. It helps but just doesn’t totally work for me, unfortunately. It’s also a little expensive to buy regularly. Thanks for those suggestions, Joellen! I think we’ll be seeing more and more companies offering milk from A2 gene cows since there are so many folks that have this issue these days.

  12. Robin Lambert says:

    Did you have brownies at Dorothy Lane? The best! Also, Ben and Jerry’s now has several ice cream flavored that are lactose free.

    • I was just there a few minutes ago and was eyeing those brownies but I left with just some of their fresh sandwiches and resisted. The cookies in the coffee shop looked good, too. lol Dangerous place!

  13. Publix usually has a by request department where they bring in small amounts of special items. Might be worth asking your local store if they could carry any of these items……

    • Thanks, Jae…I’ll ask them if I can’t find it in Whole Foods tomorrow. Wonder if Trader Joe’s carries A2 milk…will have to check there, too.

  14. I know this kind of sensitivity must be a challenge, Susan and I know everyone will appreciate your tips on these products. Thanks for another great Monday party

  15. Another proud OHIO product! Pomeroy is a fairly small city, in Southern Ohio… Not far from my Alma Mater, Ohio University…. We used to get Snowville Creamery products in our CSA packages. So happy to see them doing well and making new customers satisfied…

    • I wish they were here in GA! Hopefully I can find someone with A2 milk here. I just got back to GA this evening so I’ll be checking Whole Foods tomorrow to see if they carry it. Apparently, it’s not that easy to find.

      • It is carried by Whole Foods, in Ohio… So they do have contacts! Perhaps if not already in your local store, a request to carry it, might do the trick… Being that you have an influential and popular blog, you have the power to direct consumers to them!

  16. I might try this. I have given up on milk and have been buying cashew and almond milk. The cramps are horrible, so I understand your pain

  17. Susan-I believe lactose free milk is lacking the milk sugar-not a casein/protein issue. I have many food allergies and the Caedin vs lactose issues are quite different allergies. Most regular stores have lactose-free products-never knew there were products out there that deal with the differing makeup genetically of the cows. Most of us with such Carsin allergy issues can tolerate goats milk. Thanks for sharing the source of our issues. Fascinating! As a whole, Europe/EU is much stricter about all additives and accept little from US producers–they seem to reject our additives, coloring and antibiotics. GMOs are also a no-no! Folks who have wheat gluten issues can often est their bread/pastas there. U.S. Manufacturers have different formulas for many, many things exported to foreign soils! Lots of the things we get fed here cause these allergies/sensitivities too-as well as genetics!!

    • Yeah, I was reading more about it late last night and they seem to just call it “dairy intolerant” when it’s an issue with the protein. I’m starting to think my issue isn’t the milk sugar at all which would explain why when I take the lactaid tablets, it never really completely works. Sometimes it doesn’t seem to help at all. I didn’t have any issues with A2 milk I bought at Dorothy Lane Mkt. and don’t have any issues with goat cheese, so I guess my problem has been the beta casein protein all along. I feel like I’m finally on the right track. I’ve had some improvement taking probiotics so those must help a little, but it will be so much easier if I just drink A2 milk and avoid A1 milk altogether.

      • I just now saw this post. My computer got wiped, destroying my link to your blog. The difference between lactose intolerance and allergy is milk sugar vs milk protein. I was so glad to see a clarification. Like you, Susan, I began with lactose free products, but they didn’t solve the problem. An Allergist helped me understand. Thanks so much for the recommendation for a new product. I will call our Whole Foods

  18. I have noticed I have become much more sensitive to milk recently. Thanks for the tips and for hosting the party!
    Shelley

  19. Anne Shaheen says:

    I am so thrilled you visit Dorothy Lane Mkt.when in Dayton area.I take a cooler with me so I can bring back favorite items. You really must try the brownies though

    • Anne, I went four times in five days while there. lol I’m obsessed with Dorothy Lane Mkt. You and another person mentioned the brownies so I looked for them when I went yesterday and purchased some. They are insanely good! I’m back home now, missing my grandbabies tonight.

  20. Costco sells their equivalent of Lactaid tablets and they are not expensive. They are very small and easy to swallow. They come in individual packets so that you can carry them with you easily. They are simple to use and they make it so that you can eat whatever you want. One thing to keep in mind, though, is that regular milk on its own is more difficult to digest than milk in combination with other foods, even with these tablets. But try the tablets–they are so worth it!

    • Thanks, Mary for that suggestion. I used to be a member but it’s so hard for me to get over to Costco, I dropped my membership. The one closest to me is by a mall and the traffic here is insane, especially around malls.
      I typically drink a lot of milk so I would be eating a lot of tablets, I’m afraid. I’m hoping I can find A2 milk here and then I won’t need to take them, although A2 milk can be pricey. Hopefully more and more farmers will start working with A2 cows and it will become more common and less expensive. There’s definitely a need for it.

  21. Hi Susan, My computer is working finally. Read about lactose ~ Here’s what I know …
    I am in Rochester, NY, and we have the Wegman’s stores. If you are looking for something, they will research it for you. I am a frozen yogurt lover. Check the ingredients, Buttermilk seems to be my problem !
    Can’t d0 Citrus either.
    Good luck Susan

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