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Thursday, September 30, 2004
I want to thank you Ganeden Biotech - makers of Digestive Advantage LI. No, I take that back - I want to throw my arms around you and shower you with utter adoration and smother you in a million kisses! Aside from the distasteful-sounding name, you have created a product that is more priceless than the purest gold - more remarkable than the first steps taken on the moon. My first born henceforth belongs to you.
Since the age of 14 I have suffered from a particularly acute case of Lactose Intolerance. To make a medical-break-down much simpler, I cannot digest dairy products. Most LI people simply cannot have a glass of milk, or maybe even a slice of cheese - it might give them some uncomfortable gas or even the runs. I, however, being the extremist that I am cannot even eat bread because of the nominal milk sugar (Lactose) that is present in the form of whey. Eating even a slice of bread or a seemingly harmless Pop-Tart without first imbibing my Lactaid pills would, within three hours time, have me in the bathroom feeling as if I'm dying from food poisoning. Even whey will give me cramps-worst-than-childbirth and diarrhea that only half a bottle of Kaopectate and a complete hour of not-moving-my-body-even-the-slightest-inch-lest-it-should-start-again can cure. No one has known diarrhea like me. You're talking to a person that used to keep a bottle of Pepto Bismol (for smaller bouts) and one of Kaopectate in her car - and also a set in the bathroom and another set in her purse. From 1991-1993, I alone was responsible for every bit of Kaopectate's revenue.
So my history with Lactose Intolerance has been a bumpy one. At this late date, 13 years into the game, taking Lactaid pills before just about everything that goes into my mouth has become part of every day life. I no longer think about it - grabbing a pack of pills before eating is second nature now. That doesn't mean it isn't still a pain in the ass.
Having such a bad case, I have always had to take the maximum number of pills - that's 6 pills of regular strength Lactaid and 2 pills of Ultra Lactaid. I now only take Ultra, but who wants to take 2 pills when they just want to try a bite of someone's snack, or have one or two cookies? Many times I've refrained from snacking or sampling foods simply because it wasn't worth the hassle to hunt down a glass of water and down two pills for a small amount of food. 2 or 6 pills for one cookie or a piece of cake? I don't think so.
Which brings us to now and the company known as LI. A few weeks ago I was at the local Walgreen's, looking for the generic Lactaid-brand (regular Lactaid is very expensive - I'm an Equate-if-I-can kinda gal). A box sitting among the various Lactaids caught my eye - something called "Digestive Advantage LI". I honestly couldn't believe my eyes when I read:
Digestive Advantage LI is a one caplet per day treatment for lactose intolerance. It provides relief for the full range of lactose intolerance symptoms. You can eat as much dairy as you want as often as you want.
Your do not have to worry about taking a pill every time you eat. One tablet in the morning and you are protected all day...
Whatthefuckdidyousay??! One pill a day to eat whatever all day long??!
You can imagine my reaction. If this was true - and if this product worked for me, it would be like a miracle!
There was a money-back guarantee, but the box was only around $5 so I bought it. It was a few weeks before I got to try it out as I wanted to make sure I was at home with no plans the day I ate my first bite of dairy food with no pill prior - just in case it didn't work.
I started off small - with the whey-stuff. A sandwich was my first risky eat - I was so nervous. It was like going to work naked not taking a pill before eating that thing! A few hours later I had a messed up stomach and bad gas. Thankfully, this magic stuff could be taken at the first sign of symptoms and they would go away. It worked! The box had said that extremely lactose intolerant people (i.e. me) might have to take two pills a day, so I decided I'd try that next.
I am happy to report that I am now taking 2 Digestive Advantage LI pills every morning and am able to eat whey foods without pill popping first! This may not seem like a big deal to some of you, but it's changed everything for me. Snacking on a few cookies or enjoying a candy bar without hunting down Lactaid pills or searching for a drink of something to swallow them with is such a joy.
I'm still so very leery about trying it out with actual milk products and I'm so terrified of milk itself I will probably never drink it again; to me it's akin to poison. I still take Lactaid pills for the "heavy stuff" but I really don't mind. Just having the burden of not being able to snack or enjoy some sweets or have cake at the office during parties has made me so happy. Also, I'm saving money not having to buy Lactaid (even the generic off-brands) anymore! A box of generic Lactaid Ultra that I normally got was about $8/pop. I went through so much having to take it with nearly everything I ate I was buying two of those a week. That may not seem like much, but it adds up when you're on a limited income.
So, to make a long explanation and adoration short, thank you thank you thank you Ganeden Biotech. Not only for the amazing product you've made that has made eating normal again for so many people, but for everything you stand for. Really, check out this company's website - they're doing this to help people, not for profit.
For those of you with irritable bowel syndrome, there is also a Digestive Advantage IBS. It may just help you like this one has helped me!
So there's my testimony and my praise and my thanks!