Re: milk and human sociobiology
26 Jan 1997 15:06:57 +0200 (Robert Snower) wrote:

> I think all of you are all wet. I just called the zoo. The man
> assured me that they feed all of the adult chimps and gorillas milk
> every week, and he has never found any of them lactose intolerant.
> I believe lactose intolerance began, as an adaptation, in hominids and
> is not characteristic of our primate relatives. And I know the reason
> why, and nobody else does.
> The oddballs are humans, not mammals in general. Lactose tolerance is
> the normal condition.
> Best wishes. rs

I can consume some quantities of lactose mixed in other food. If I
increase the amount and go on with it for some time, I get troubles.
Much fiber in the food helps - I usually take a spooful of wheat bran
when I fall to eat lactose-containing desserts.

The trouble is not lactose itself, but the abnormal increase of
specific lactose-utilizing bacteria in the gut. Since the sugar is
not absorbed, it provides food for them. Occasional intake of lactose
does not increase their number enough to cause problems.

Adult dogs are commonly lactose-intolerant, and people who feed them
with milk wonder why they have loose stools. This fits expecially to
the spitz-type dogs, like the Finnish spitz, the Karelian laika and
the Lappland dog. The severity of the trait varies, and the amount of
lactose which can be sustained.

Aila Korhonen in Finland