Lactose intolerance is very common among adults, with about 30 million American adults being diagnosed with some level of lactose intolerance by age 20, according to the National Institutes of HealthOff Site Icon (NIH).
Someone’s ethnic or racial background can make them more or less likely to become lactose intolerant. The condition is most common among people of Asian, African, or Native American descent and among Hispanics and Latinos, according to the NIH.
People of European descent are least likely to be lactose intolerant, according to the NIH.
Babies born prematurely sometimes also can have lactose intolerance, according to the NIH. The condition is hereditary, so most people inherit it from their parents, according to the Food and Drug AdministrationOff Site Icon (FDA).
Lactose intolerance is a common condition that is more likely to occur in adulthood, with a higher incidence in older adults. Some ethnic and racial populations are more affected than others, including African Americans, Hispanic Americans, American Indians, and Asian American.
Lactose Intolerance is generally observed in adults of all ages
No gender disparity is observed and both males and females are affected
Individuals of different racial and ethnic backgrounds are affected and no specific preference is generally seen
Some studies indicate the following about Lactose Intolerance:
Caucasians may develop Lactose Intolerance after the age of 5 years
African Americans may develop the condition as early as 2 years
Adults of Asian and Native American descent are more likely to be affected than Caucasians
Research has not established the reason behind such a behavior.