Is Milk Possible With Gastritis

Alexander Bruni
Author: Alexander Bruni Time for reading: ~13 minutes Last Updated: September 12, 2022
Is Milk Possible With Gastritis

Milk and dairy products - is it possible to include them in the diet for gastritis? Or for a comfortable life with such a diagnosis, they should be completely excluded from the food basket?


Diet is one of the main tools for correcting gastritis. If you understand which foods help relieve its symptoms and which worsen it, you can easily create a complete, tasty and varied diet that turns food into medicine.


What is gastritis

Gastritis is an inflammation of the lining of the stomach. A common disease among both adults and children.

It is believed that the diet for gastritis implies a lot of restrictions, that it is tasteless, boring and easier to ignore gastritis than follow nutritional recommendations. But it's not. With gastritis, you can eat tasty, varied and healthy, but for this you need to correctly diagnose. It depends on the characteristics of the disease which products should be excluded.

Whether milk is possible with gastritis depends on a number of conditions:

  • the presence of lactose intolerance or allergy to milk protein and the degree of their manifestation;
  • the form of the course of gastritis;
  • secretory activity of the stomach.

First of all, you should determine if you have lactose intolerance.


Dairy products as part of the diet for gastritis

It is not recommended to exclude dairy products from the diet without serious reasons. They are rich in nutrients, they are balanced and well absorbed:

  • fermented milk products (yogurt, kefir, cottage cheese) - a source of probiotics - beneficial bacteria that improve bowel function and help the body digest food;

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  • calcium - 250 ml of milk contains about 30% of its daily intake in an easily digestible form. If for some reason it is necessary to limit the consumption of milk and dairy products, it is necessary to control the intake of calcium from other sources, for example, enrich the diet with kale, kale, bok choy, edamame beans, fish with small bones (sardine), sesame;
  • phosphorus - 250 ml of milk contains approximately 25% of the daily requirement;
  • B vitamins - in 250 ml of yogurt there can be up to 20% of the daily value;
  • fat-soluble vitamins A and D, which are especially rich in fermented milk products (100 g of sour cream can contain up to 20% of the daily requirement of vitamin A, 50 g of cheese - up to 5% of the daily requirement of vitamin D);
  • a protein based on casein and whey. Casein provides long-term saturation, supplies the body with energy, is used to synthesize hormones, strengthen nails and hair, improve blood clotting, stimulate the nervous system, and increase muscle mass. Whey proteins are digested more easily and faster than casein, great for muscle recovery after exercise.

In addition to vitamins and minerals, milk and dairy products contain lactose (milk sugar), which, on the one hand, is very important for the functioning of the organs and systems of the body: it is involved in the synthesis of fats, proteins, vitamins and is involved in intracellular metabolism, the liver, kidneys, brain and nervous system. But on the other hand, lactose can be poorly absorbed or not absorbed at all. And if so, the benefits of drinking milk and dairy products are small.

Determining the presence or absence of lactose intolerance and its degree is an important step in compiling a complete diet and understanding what place should be given to milk and dairy products in it, regardless of the presence of gastritis.


Lactose intolerance and milk protein allergy

These two different conditions are often confused due to the similarity of symptoms.

Lactose intolerance is related to the amount of lactase enzyme that is needed for its full absorption. If there is not enough lactase, lactose is not absorbed, and this provokes problems with digestion and the functioning of the gastrointestinal tract.

Lactase deficiency exists:

  • congenital - manifests itself from birth and is genetic in nature;
  • primary (adult type) - associated with a decrease in lactase activity;
  • secondary, associated with damage to intestinal cells as a result of various diseases.

The most common type of lactase deficiency is primary. In the European part of Russia, 16-18% of the population suffers from it, in the USA - 20%, in Asia - almost 100%.

The topic of lactase deficiency is now very popular, and laboratories offer various tests to diagnose it, which you can take yourself, without a doctor's referral and regardless of the presence of symptoms.

But the diagnosis and treatment of lactase deficiency is justified only in the presence of symptoms of lactose intolerance.

The classic symptoms of lactase deficiency usually appear 1-2 hours after drinking milk and disappear after 2-3 hours:

  • flatulence, bloating;
  • intestinal colic, abdominal pain - from aching to cramping;
  • stool disorders - diarrhea (frequent, copious, watery, with a lot of gas, may be green), less often constipation;
  • swelling, feeling of fog in the head.

Symptoms of intolerance to dairy products can also be conditions that manifest themselves for a long time, which at first glance have nothing to do with eating food. For example, chronic diseases (tonsillitis, sinusitis), mucus in the nasopharynx, mucous discharge with feces.

Acne can be an indirect symptom of lactase deficiency.

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If you suspected lactase deficiency based on your symptoms, you can check your concerns with the help of diagnostics:

  • diet diagnostics is the main and free method that you can turn to first of all. If, after reducing the amount of lactose in the diet, unpleasant symptoms disappear, and after the return of lactose they worsen, this is the first sign of lactose intolerance and a signal that it is necessary to control lactose in the diet. Under the supervision of a physician, the diagnosis can be checked by ingesting the lactase enzyme with each meal containing dairy products or lactose. If after taking lactase for 3-7 days there is an improvement, this confirms the correctness of the diagnosis;
  • determination of the total carbohydrate content in feces is a method that reflects the overall ability of the body to absorb carbohydrates. It does not allow you to unambiguously identify problems with the absorption of lactose, therefore it cannot be the basis for excluding dairy products from the diet, but it can be used to diagnose enzymatic pancreatic insufficiency;
  • hydrogen breath test - measures the amount of hydrogen in the exhaled air before and after taking a liquid with lactose. An increase in the amount of hydrogen is a sign that lactose is not processed in the small intestine, but in the large intestine, which means that there is a lack of lactase;
  • determination of lactase activity in the mucous membrane of the small intestine is the “gold standard” for diagnosing lactose intolerance, but it is invasive, and therefore rather complicated method;
  • a genetic test to evaluate mutations in the LCT gene (if it is present, a person from childhood will not tolerate any dairy products, even breast milk) and the MSM gene (the mutation explains the intolerance to milk and dairy products that appeared with age). Possible test results: T / T - high lactase level. Dietary correction is not required; C/T - decrease in lactase level (approximately 2 times). Restriction of consumption of milk and dairy products, control of symptoms and use of enzymatic support (lactase intake) if necessary are recommended; С/С — decrease in lactase level (up to 5%). Milk replacement, use of enzyme preparations.

The cost of the test is from 1000 rubles (depending on the laboratory). On the sites of research centers, you can follow promotions and take a test at a reduced price. The result of this test will help to better understand the risks and make an individual diet.

Most of the existing methods of laboratory diagnostics are either insufficiently indicative or invasive and expensive. The most effective method for assessing the ability to absorb lactose is diet therapy and self-observation.

If, according to the symptoms and diagnosis, you really have a lactase deficiency, this does not mean that dairy products should be completely excluded from the diet.

What to do if you suspect lactase deficiency or confirm the diagnosis:

  • keep a food diary and record the type of product, its amount, the amount of lactose it contains, the manufacturer and the reaction of the body. This information is needed to compile a more specific list of acceptable dairy products;
  • in case of primary lactase deficiency and at the stage of secondary treatment, it is recommended to exclude from the diet whole condensed and concentrated milk, confectionery products with milk fillers (butter cream, caramel, milk candies), but with the preservation of fermented milk products with a low lactose content in the diet (kefir, yogurt is good tolerated and useful for people with lactase deficiency, contribute to the breakdown of lactose due to the lactobacilli included in their composition), butter and cheeses in an amount that, using self-observation and keeping a diary, is determined as acceptable;
  • with secondary lactase deficiency, 1-3 months after the relief of symptoms and the restoration of the health of the intestinal mucosa, all types of dairy products can be gradually introduced, monitoring the reaction and forming a list of exactly those options that are acceptable for a particular person;
  • to improve the absorption of lactose, it is possible to take probiotics, which improve the enzymatic activity of intestinal microorganisms and reduce the symptoms of lactase deficiency, fermented milk products, which include natural probiotics, will also be useful.

With lactose intolerance or allergies, it is important to choose the allowable rate of dairy products that the body can absorb without negative manifestations.

If at the same time a person is diagnosed with gastritis, then, depending on its characteristics, dairy products can be part of the diet, but under certain conditions:

  • do not worsen the course of gastritis;
  • do not exceed the maximum allowable rate (track your reaction in the diary of food and self-observation).

Pay attention to how different dairy products affect the course of gastritis.

Dairy products and gastritis

With gastritis, the set of permitted dairy products will vary depending on several factors:

  • forms of gastritis;
  • secretory activity of the stomach.


According to the form of the course, gastritis is divided into the following types:

  • acute - a form of gastritis, which can be caused by inappropriate food, bacterial infections, stress and other traumatic factors. The symptoms of this form of gastritis are very obvious, they are difficult to miss or ignore. At the same time, dietary correction is rarely sabotaged - a person is ready for any dietary restrictions, if only to achieve an improvement in his condition;
  • chronic gastritis is characterized by chronic inflammation of the gastric mucosa with its gradual thinning, a disorder in the production of gastric juice, a violation of the functions of gastric motility and hormone production. Unlike the acute form, it is often asymptomatic, so the diet for chronic gastritis outside the acute stage is often sabotaged.

In acute gastritis or exacerbation of chronic gastritis, a therapeutic diet is indicated with a preference for dishes that will help stop inflammation and restore the gastric mucosa:

  • meals 5-6 times a day, in small portions;
  • the basis of the diet is boiled or steamed dishes, mashed, chopped, liquid, cooled to a comfortable temperature, for example, mucous porridges and mashed cereals (buckwheat, oatmeal, flaxseed, amaranth, green buckwheat) and vegetables, kissels, liquid soups and soups - puree, etc.;
  • the exclusion of very hot or very cold, hard to digest foods that stimulate the secretion of gastric juice - spicy, fatty, carbonated, strong drinks, etc.

Features of the intake of dairy products in acute gastritis and during an exacerbation of chronic:

  • fermented milk products are not recommended due to excessive stimulation of the secretion of gastric juice;
  • in the absence of lactose intolerance, milk, cream, steam soufflé from non-acidic fresh grated cottage cheese can be included in the diet.

The diet for chronic gastritis consists not only of cereals and jelly, it is close to full-fledged, but differs depending on the secretory activity of the stomach:

  • with gastritis with high acidity, fermented milk products are not allowed;
  • with gastritis with low acidity, whole milk and products from it are not allowed.


Dairy products for gastritis with high acidity

A diet for gastritis with high acidity without exacerbation is a complete diet, which is based on the following principles:

  • fractional meals up to 5-6 times a day, without overeating, while the food should not be too cold or too hot so as not to put an extra burden on the inflamed mucosa;
  • restriction of products that stimulate gastric secretion (strong broths, canned food, jelly, pickled, spicy, salty, smoked, fried foods, rich flour products, black bread, sweets, ice cream, cabbage, turnips, rutabagas, radishes, radishes, green and onions , garlic, sorrel, spinach, mushrooms, raw eggs, legumes, millet, refractory fats);
  • it is allowed to use foods that help reduce the acidity of the stomach or have little effect on its secretion (vegetable yogurts, ghee, raw-pressed vegetable oils as an additive to dishes, soft-boiled eggs or omelets, soups and cereals from cereals, cereals - buckwheat, oatmeal - and vegetables, soufflé and rice cereal dishes;
  • drinks - it is allowed to drink weak tea and coffee with milk, kissels, non-carbonated drinking water. Alcoholic drinks and soda should be excluded.

Dairy products with high acidity:

  • fermented milk products are not recommended - cottage cheese, kefir, yogurt, fermented baked milk, sour cheeses, skim milk and whey;
  • in the absence of lactose intolerance, milk or cream is allowed, as they do not irritate the gastric mucosa. With any form of lactose intolerance, their use is possible only in safe individual quantities.

Dairy products for gastritis with low acidity

The ration is built according to the principles:

  • sparing attitude to the gastric mucosa with the help of frequent fractional meals and warm food;
  • the choice of products that provide moderate stimulation of the production of gastric juice (lean meat, soups with low-fat fish or chicken broth);
  • exclusion of foods and dishes that linger in the stomach for a long time and are difficult to digest (spicy, smoked and salty dishes, fried and rolled in breadcrumbs and flour, fatty meats and fish, pilaf, pizza, canned food, raw fruits and vegetables, fresh dough products, black bread, ice cream);
  • adding products to increase the acidity of gastric juice, for example, a mixture of lemon, ginger juice and salt before each meal, sour fruits and berries, natural vinegar as dressing for salads, marinating meat with pineapple or kiwi, etc .;
  • reducing the amount of sweets and simple carbohydrates to prevent fermentation in the intestine against the background of low acidity;
  • drinks - tea, coffee, cocoa with milk is allowed (drink if tolerated).

Dairy products with low acidity:

  • it is not recommended to drink whole milk in its natural form due to the possibility of fermentation processes in the intestine against the background of low acidity;
  • in the absence of intolerance, high-quality fermented milk products are allowed without additives and sugar (kefir, yogurt, cottage cheese, sour cheese, sour cream 15–20%). They have a positive effect on the digestive organs, prevent the development of infections and are very easy to digest. If the drunk milk is digested only by 30% within an hour, then kefir is digested by 90% in the same time. This is due to the fact that it enters the stomach treated with its own bacteria, due to which its use improves digestion processes and promotes the speedy absorption of other products. In case of intolerance, they should be consumed only in an acceptable amount.


  1. Nutrition for gastritis can be tasty, varied and can help improve the quality of life and general condition, if gastritis is correctly diagnosed and a diet is formed taking into account the characteristics of the disease.
  2. The first thing to look for when including dairy products in your diet is if you have symptoms of lactose intolerance or milk allergy.
  3. Only if symptoms are present, it makes sense to undergo additional diagnostics, but dietary diagnostics, keeping a food diary and determining a safe amount of lactose are considered the “gold standard”.
  4. Dairy products are the most valuable component of the diet. It is not necessary to exclude it from the diet, even if there is a confirmed intolerance. May be of benefit in safe amounts based on food diary and self-monitoring.
  5. Particular attention should be paid to the quality of dairy products, look for trusted manufacturers, do not buy milk and dairy products from dubious sellers.
  6. Depending on the type of gastritis, the form of its course and the secretory activity of the stomach, nutrition and the list of allowed dairy products will vary. 

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