Modification of sweet acidophilus milk to improve utilization by lactose-intolerant persons.Am J Clin Nutr. 1987 Mar; 45(3):570-4.AJ
Enhanced digestion of yogurt by lactose-intolerant individuals is believed to be due to inherent beta-galactosidase (lactase) in the culture organisms that aids in the hydrolysis of ingested lactose. However, sweet acidophilus milk, which contains lactase-rich organisms, does not enhance lactose digestion. Using breath-hydrogen measurements to indicate malabsorption in 14 human subjects, we compared utilization of: milk, yogurt, heated yogurt, yogurt plus lactose, heated yogurt plus lactase, sweet acidophilus milk (SAM), and SAM made with sonicated cells. Results indicate that both the reduction of lactose during fermentation and the presence of indigenous bacterial lactase are responsible for the increased ability to tolerate lactose in yogurt. Improved utilization of SAM by sonication suggests that intracellular lactase is not available during digestion and that sonication releases the lactase activity from the cells.