The mere thought of a latte or cappuccino brings some people out in a cold sweat and they like nothing more than to bore others with the virtues of soy milk. But researchers say lactose intolerance may be all in the mind.
Many people who claim to be intolerant to the milk sugar lactose are simply stressed, anxious or depressed. While their symptoms are real, the cause is in their mind, rather than in their coffee cup. The discovery by Italian researchers has important implications for health, because many people who believe they are lactose intolerant cut out dairy products from their diet. This could leave them severely short of calcium, raising the odds of brittle bones and falls and fracture in old age.
The study is the latest to question whether many of the millions of people who claim to have food intolerances are actually fussy eaters.