Lactose Intolerance and Ranch Dressing

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An appetizer with ranch dressing. (Image: amberleeknight/iStock/Getty Images)

People who are lactose-intolerant don't make enough of the enzyme responsible for breaking down the sugar lactose, which is found in milk and dairy products. While they may be able to consume small amounts of dairy products, large amounts may cause side effects, such as gas, bloating, stomach pain, nausea and diarrhea. Dressings, including ranch dressing, can contain lactose.

Ranch Dressing Ingredients

Ranch dressing is typically made with buttermilk, but some recipes also include sour cream or yogurt. All of these are dairy products, and are therefore potential sources of lactose. If you suffer from lactose intolerance and want to eat a ranch-type dressing, look for non-dairy or vegan versions of ranch dressing in your grocery store. These will be lactose-free. Otherwise, you can always make your own ranch dressing, using non-dairy substitutes in place of the dairy products you typically find in ranch dressing.

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