No one's immune from occasional upset stomachs, and nearly 40% of us will likely struggle with more serious digestive disorders like ulcers and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). The good news is that doctors and scientists are constantly learning new things about the many complex diseases that affect our stomachs. So although tummy aches will continue to plague us, separating myth from fact about these nagging pains will shorten the time it takes to find relief.
By Jeannette Moninger
Fact: Beans typically get blamed for causing gas, but the more likely culprit is dairy. Most of us consume a serving or two of cheese, yogurt, or milk a day, while few of us eat beans that often. If you start to feel bloated, crampy, or get diarrhea within 30 minutes to two hours of consuming dairy products, your body may no longer be making enough lactase enzyme to break down milk sugar, called lactose. The older you get, the more lactose-intolerant you may become. Thankfully, you don't have to ditch dairy: Try lactose-free milk or cheese, or take lactase supplements like Lactaid before consuming milk products.