I’m lactose intolerant and, therefore, don’t drink milk or eat any dairy products unless they are lactose-free. Now that I’m pregnant, what can I do to ensure that I get enough calcium for my growing baby? Are vitamin supplements sufficient, or are there certain foods I should be eating as well?
Lactose intolerance is becoming quite common. Besides the obvious use of Lactaid (lactose-free milk), I suggest eating foods fortified with calcium (calcium-fortified orange juice, or broccoli), prenatal vitamins with calcium supplementation (typically 200 milligrams) and a calcium supplement to reach the daily requirement of 1,000 milligrams.
Remember, too much calcium is not healthy, so keep your daily consumption under 2,000 milligrams to prevent kidney stones.
Typically, I suggest Tums or Rolaids as the calcium supplement. Not only do they have a sufficient amount of calcium, but they also give a secondary benefit of heartburn relief. Other supplements such as Citracal, Oscal and Caltrate are acceptable.
Our parenting advice is given as suggestions only. We recommend you also consult your healthcare provider, and urge you to contact them immediately if your question is urgent or about a medical condition.