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View Full Version : Calling all Lactose intolerants autosomal Genetics



Twilight
18-02-14, 17:38
Hello there, this is an offshoot of this link http://www.eupedia.com/forum/threads/29484-The-mystery-of-Lactase-Persistence-(LP)-in-Europeans?p=426738&posted=1#post426738

I just got DNA tested on 23andme for ansominal genetics and I ended up with 53.45% EEF, 35.81% WHG and 1434% ANE IE, I also got 2.9% Neanderthal.

I was wondering if there are other Lactose-Intolerants out there how you guys fair as an attempt to see if there is a trend.


Thanks ^_^

Maciamo
18-02-14, 17:54
Absominal ? Ansominal ? Do you mean autosomal ?

Twilight
18-02-14, 20:06
Absominal ? Ansominal ? Do you mean autosomal ?


Autosomal, my bad. Fixing the error, thank you so much for the notice:satisfied:

is there a way to fix the name?

Angela
18-02-14, 20:33
The snps affecting lactose tolerance are well known...both the European versions and the others...all you have to do is sign into your 23andme account, go to your raw data, and search for them, and you will find out whether you are homozygous, heterozygous, or negative for it.

The problem is that it seems that lactase persistence may be affected by whether you are homozygous or heterozygous, other minor snps may affect its expression, and perhaps even less actual consumption will result in a diminution of the effect.

Just as an example, I'm a carrier for them, and had no problem with consuming cow's milk products for most of my life. One day, though, it's as if the gene was turned off. I don't know if it's a coincidence that this occurred at a time when I was cutting down on dairy. First, cow's milk products, then sheep's milk products. Goat's milk cheeses are still o.k., but barely, and I can have the occasional cow's milk cheese without too many problems, but ice cream, for example, is DEATH, which is a darn shame, because I love ice cream. (Hagen Dacz was my go to brand...yum!) I haven't tried just cow's milk, other than a little bit in coffee, because I've never liked it, but I'm sure that would have terrible effects as well.

There are also maps which show the distribution of the lactase persistence snps and which have been posted before...
http://centralasiandragons.weebly.com/uploads/6/9/9/1/6991389/490616.jpg?726

This is a map showing the ability to drink cow's milk, which is a different issue:
http://media-cache-ec0.pinimg.com/736x/5f/30/42/5f304226b2c12cc2e49f5129bbc4b2f1.jpg

This 2012 paper posits that it is not a result of in situ selection, but the result of admixture with Corded Ware populations which originally carried it. Unfortunately, I can't seem to access the whole paper.
http://muse.jhu.edu/login?auth=0&type=summary&url=/journals/perspectives_in_biology_and_medicine/v055/55.2.vuorisalo.html


The main carbohydrate in milk is lactose, which must be hydrolyzed to glucose and galactose before the sugars can be digested. While 65% or more of the total human population are lactose intolerant, in some human populations lactase activity commonly persists into adulthood. Lactose tolerance is exceptionally widespread in Northern European countries such as Sweden and Finland, with tolerance levels of 74% and 82%, respectively. Theoretically, this may result either from a strong local selection pressure for lactose tolerance, or from immigration of lactose tolerant people to Northern Europe. We provide several lines of archaeological and historical evidence suggesting that the high lactose tolerance in North Europeans cannot be explained by selection from in situ milk consumption. First, fresh cow milk has not belonged to the traditional diet of Swedes or Finns until recent times. Second, not enough milk has been available for adult consumption. Cattle herding has been neither widespread nor productive enough in Northern Europe to have provided constant access to fresh milk. We suggest that the high prevalence of lactose tolerance in Finland in particular may be explained by immigration of people representing so-called Corded Ware Culture, an early culture representing agricultural development in Europe.

LeBrok
18-02-14, 22:24
Let's not forget about huge benefit of milk for Northern Europe where winters are long and summers warm and moist enough to produce copies supplies of hay (completely useless dry grass for human consumption). The miracle happens in winter when nothing grows to eat (from October till May!) when feeding cows this dry grass gives plenty of calories.
To put it in perspective let's quantatise this milk advantage:
- average cow gives 30 liters of milk per day these days. Let's assume that cows way back gave 10 liters per day.
- let's guess that average farming family had two cows.
- 100g of milk gives 60 Cal., that's 600 Cal a liter

Two cows will give 20 liters of milk per day (every day through the year). This is 20L x 600 Cal = 12,000 calories a day. That's huge considering that average person needs 2,000 calories per day to be healthy.
Even one cow would bring substantial benefit to poor village families in winter turning dry grass into 6,000 calories per day, every day.

Aberdeen
19-02-14, 01:55
................

The main carbohydrate in milk is lactose, which must be hydrolyzed to glucose and galactose before the sugars can be digested. While 65% or more of the total human population are lactose intolerant, in some human populations lactase activity commonly persists into adulthood. Lactose tolerance is exceptionally widespread in Northern European countries such as Sweden and Finland, with tolerance levels of 74% and 82%, respectively. Theoretically, this may result either from a strong local selection pressure for lactose tolerance, or from immigration of lactose tolerant people to Northern Europe. We provide several lines of archaeological and historical evidence suggesting that the high lactose tolerance in North Europeans cannot be explained by selection from in situ milk consumption. First, fresh cow milk has not belonged to the traditional diet of Swedes or Finns until recent times. Second, not enough milk has been available for adult consumption. Cattle herding has been neither widespread nor productive enough in Northern Europe to have provided constant access to fresh milk. We suggest that the high prevalence of lactose tolerance in Finland in particular may be explained by immigration of people representing so-called Corded Ware Culture, an early culture representing agricultural development in Europe.

I'm not sure why you think that Swedes and Finns didn't have much access to fresh milk until recently. I don't know much about the history of those two countries, but I do know that they're currently the two biggest per capital consumers of dairy products in the world. I also know that people in at least some parts of northern Europe have traditionally concentrated on livestock farming rather than crop farming, because the climate and geography lends itself better to livestock farming than crop farming. That was particularly true in Scotland, where many of my ancestors came from, and where there's a fairly high level of lactase persistence. And I know the Danes have always been famous for their dairy products. I suspect that, after fishing, the main protein source in Sweden and Finland would always have been dairy, once the Neolithic arrived there, and that would probably have provided a big boost to the population. You need a more moderate climate in order to be able to grow much other than hay, oats and turnips. Without dairy, the northern part of Europe would have remained much more lightly populated. It's not as if you can grow olives in Sweden or Finland but there's certainly good pasture in some parts of both those countries, according to what I can find out from an internet search.

Aberdeen
19-02-14, 02:07
I should add that, here in Canada, crop farming happens in the more southerly part of the country. Then, as one goes further north, we have areas that aren't suitable for crop farming but the pasture is good enough for grazing and harvesting hay, so people raise livestock. And there's also livestock farming on some parts of the prairies that are too dry for crop farming. Here in southern Ontario, there is some dairy farming but it's mostly crop farming. And the only beef cattle here are livestock that were raised on the prairies or in the north and were brought south to be fattened up on grain before being sent to the slaughterhouse. Livestock farming is mostly concentrated in either open grassland or in northern regions. In more southern regions that aren't dry grassland, people may have some cattle but they're mostly crop farmers - sort of similar to Neolithic farmers in places like France and Italy.

elghund
19-02-14, 02:27
I am supposed to be lactose intolerant according to 23andMe, but I drink milk and eat ice cream and yogurt with no problem.

Angela
19-02-14, 03:15
I'm not sure why you think that Swedes and Finns didn't have much access to fresh milk until recently. I don't know much about the history of those two countries, but I do know that they're currently the two biggest per capital consumers of dairy products in the world. I also know that people in at least some parts of northern Europe have traditionally concentrated on livestock farming rather than crop farming, because the climate and geography lends itself better to livestock farming than crop farming. That was particularly true in Scotland, where many of my ancestors came from, and where there's a fairly high level of lactase persistence. And I know the Danes have always been famous for their dairy products. I suspect that, after fishing, the main protein source in Sweden and Finland would always have been dairy, once the Neolithic arrived there, and that would probably have provided a big boost to the population. You need a more moderate climate in order to be able to grow much other than hay, oats and turnips. Without dairy, the northern part of Europe would have remained much more lightly populated. It's not as if you can grow olives in Sweden or Finland but there's certainly good pasture in some parts of both those countries, according to what I can find out from an internet search.

Don't shoot the messenger, Aberdeen! :petrified: Those aren't my words. It's just cut and paste from the abstract of that paper put out by Finnish scientists. (The link is upthread...unfortunately, I can't access the full paper.)

The only opinions I have on the issue of dairy consumption in northern Europe come from papers. I have no personal experience other than as a tourist or on business in modern day Austria/Germany and the British Isles. That's as far north in Europe as I've gone.

Now, you've piqued my curiosity...I'm going to see what other papers are available on dairy consumption or at least milk consumption in northern Europe in the medieval period and even the classical period, if it's ever been studied.

Jackson
19-02-14, 03:19
I'm not sure why you think that Swedes and Finns didn't have much access to fresh milk until recently. I don't know much about the history of those two countries, but I do know that they're currently the two biggest per capital consumers of dairy products in the world. I also know that people in at least some parts of northern Europe have traditionally concentrated on livestock farming rather than crop farming, because the climate and geography lends itself better to livestock farming than crop farming. That was particularly true in Scotland, where many of my ancestors came from, and where there's a fairly high level of lactase persistence. And I know the Danes have always been famous for their dairy products. I suspect that, after fishing, the main protein source in Sweden and Finland would always have been dairy, once the Neolithic arrived there, and that would probably have provided a big boost to the population. You need a more moderate climate in order to be able to grow much other than hay, oats and turnips. Without dairy, the northern part of Europe would have remained much more lightly populated. It's not as if you can grow olives in Sweden or Finland but there's certainly good pasture in some parts of both those countries, according to what I can find out from an internet search.

I remember there was a Roman account of Britain in which those close to continent (presumably in the lowland areas in the south and east) had an agricultural diet similar to that in nearby areas on the continent, but people much further inland who they knew less about relied more heavily on milk and meat. And of course Lactose Persistence is extremely high in the British Isles.

LeBrok
19-02-14, 03:40
I am supposed to be lactose intolerant according to 23andMe, but I drink milk and eat ice cream and yogurt with no problem.
As Angela explained in post #4, it is not necessarily black and white issue. Alleles, duplications, repetitions, homo or heterozygous and who knows else what. Perhaps even some bacterial flora in our guts helps us to deal with lactose.

Treating Lactose IntoleranceRegarding whether Lactobacillus acidophilus supplements can help those with lactose intolerance, researchers are split. Some studies, including a 1995 article published in the "Journal of Dairy Science," suggest that Lactobacillus supplementation helps lactose intolerant individuals to digest the lactose in dairy. Others, such as a 1999 study published in the "American Journal of Clinical Nutrition," demonstrate no effect. Lactobacillus supplements won't hurt you, so you may wish to try them in order to determine whether you'll get any benefit

http://www.livestrong.com/article/352856-lactobacillus-and-lactose-intolerance/

On other hand even lactose tolerant people can develop milk allergy.

LeBrok
19-02-14, 03:49
I remember there was a Roman account of Britain in which those close to continent (presumably in the lowland areas in the south and east) had an agricultural diet similar to that in nearby areas on the continent, but people much further inland who they knew less about relied more heavily on milk and meat. And of course Lactose Persistence is extremely high in the British Isles.
Angela quoted this from one paper, not her words.
It said:

I'm not sure why you think that Swedes and Finns didn't have much access to fresh milk until recently. They've never defined "recently". Perhaps they meant since "Corded Ware" which they refer to as source of lactose persistence, on many occasions.

Last Little Ice age might have been responsible for major spread of lactose persistence in north. When crops failed there was always grass for cows and milk for people.

I remember reading about recent discovery of garbage pit by bronze age house/village in Central Europe/Poland. They've concluded that people had cows but didn't eat much beef. Cows were almost exclusively for dairy products. Other staples: bread, cabbage, eggs, chicken and pork. Interestingly, almost exactly like today.

Aberdeen
19-02-14, 04:24
Don't shoot the messenger, Aberdeen! :petrified: Those aren't my words. It's just cut and paste from the abstract of that paper put out by Finnish scientists. (The link is upthread...unfortunately, I can't access the full paper.)

The only opinions I have on the issue of dairy consumption in northern Europe come from papers. I have no personal experience other than as a tourist or on business in modern day Austria/Germany and the British Isles. That's as far north in Europe as I've gone.

Now, you've piqued my curiosity...I'm going to see what other papers are available on dairy consumption or at least milk consumption in northern Europe in the medieval period and even the classical period, if it's ever been studied.

Okay, I didn't realize that was a quote. I just know from having grown up on a farm and from having seen a fair bit of my own country that areas that aren't great for crop farming, including mountainous areas and northern areas (up to a point), are usually good for livestock farming. And I don't know what the Finnish scientists meant by "recently". If by "recently" they meant "the arrival of the Neolithic in Finland", they were using a different time scale than I thought. One that would allow for the development of lactase persistence as a result of either population replacement or mutations within existing populations, IMO. I know that the largest Y DNA component in Finland is N, but I don't know whether that tells us how long the Finns have had regular access to cattle. I guess I need to research Finnish history more, to figure out when they switched from a hunter/gatherer/fishing population to farming.

Angela
19-02-14, 21:45
This is what I've found so far in terms of evidence for actual dairy consumption...

As for the Germanic tribes, Tacitus, if he can be trusted, says that they consumed fruit, game and curdled milk. Would that be fresh cheese or a yoghurt like substance? They must have consumed meat from their herds as well, but he doesn't mention it.

Other ancient writers just said meat, milk, and beer. I don't know if that was curdled milk or just plain milk.

In medieval times, according to this book, extent records of doctors, some manor records etc., seem to indicate that it wasn't consumed very much among the upper classes except for the very young and very old (problems with their teeth?). The main concern seems to have been that it spoiled so quickly. Also, the ownership of a cow seems to have been beyond the means of many serfs. The milk from the herds of the manor seems to have been used for butter, which, along with lard, was a cooking fat, and cheese.

http://books.google.com/books?id=VelSAQAAQBAJ&pg=PA199&lpg=PA199&dq=consumption+of+milk+in+medieval+Europe&source=bl&ots=_lkynTkB8m&sig=G7HBifkdhjCMdcS3X2s7VJpm6lQ&hl=en&sa=X&ei=FtoDU7PkLuWp0QHm_oGIAw&ved=0CFYQ6AEwCA#v=onepage&q=consumption%20of%20milk%20in%20medieval%20Europe&f=false

This article finds no evidence for much actual milk drinking at all, but I can't find the original source upon which this translation is based.
http://www.eps1.comlink.ne.jp/~mayus/eng/MariaEng.pdf

While this book agrees that milk consumption was discouraged in adults in the medieval world, it does say poor people consumed it, but whether as whey in food isn't clear. In other words, the serfs would have gotten the leavings.
http://books.google.com/books?id=jtgud2P-EGwC&pg=PA45&lpg=PA45&dq=drinking+milk+in+medieval+Europe&source=bl&ots=9jlJTufOP4&sig=30Ljx2LTI62hZwcUlJLQAwuXF2A&hl=en&sa=X&ei=Ag0EU8ilO8aw0AGP4oCoDQ&ved=0CEIQ6AEwAg#v=onepage&q=drinking%20milk%20in%20medieval%20Europe&f=false

This paper discusses the huge increase in milk consumption in the 19th century in Barcelona as the result of better and faster transportation and pasteurization.
http://scielo.isciii.es/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S0211-95362010000100005

I can't get access to the book, so this is a second hand account:

" For England alone the answer would vary according to class
(dairy products had low status - the aristocracy avoided them, the
poor had no choice but to depend on them), region (some areas
emphasised pastoral farming, others arable), season, and period (the
balance between arable farming and pastoralism fluctuated, especially
before and after the Black Death - though ironically the expansion of
pastoralism after the plague was parallelled by rising peasant
prosperity, causing them to ape their betters by rejecting dairy
products).

Chris Dyer's 'Everyday Life in Medieval England' (London, 1994) has a
chapter, originally a 1988 Agricultural History Review article, which
discusses medieval peasants' diet and at pp. 82-3 analyses harvest
labourers' food allowances on a manor in Norfolk between 1256 and 1424
- the dairy element in these varied between 28% and 9% in terms of
value and 13% and 7% in terms of calories (though the calory data
include eggs with the dairy produce, for some reason).
He revisited the subject, and looked also at aristocratic diet, in
'Standards of Living in the later Middles Ages: Social Change in
England c.1200-1520' (Cambridge, 1989). At p. 56 he analyses several
14th- and 15th-century aristocratic households' diets - dairy produce
amounted to only 1-3% by cost.



I'm quoting this 2012 book, which is pretty venomous in my opinion about the "barbarian tribes", just for the section where he discusses the different classes at the bottom of society. He specifically points out the areas where tenant farms existed. It seems to me that in that situation, the tenant farmers might indeed have kept some of the fresh milk for themselves.
http://books.google.com/books?id=MnzCAgAAQBAJ&pg=PT93&lpg=PT93&dq=dairy+farming+in+medieval+Europe&source=bl&ots=wfvECg2GKe&sig=eLNfMnMBaETvEZ7kgu4Hw0fr5Qw&hl=en&sa=X&ei=bPQEU-nICsSI0QH-3ICYBQ&ved=0CEkQ6AEwBzgK#v=onepage&q=dairy%20farming%20in%20medieval%20Europe&f=false

Bottom line, it seems that the Germanic tribes did consume dairy, but whether most of it was curdled, I don't know. When they were traveling it seems that they might have milked the cows, at least during the summer months after they calved.

The medieval period seems to have been one where milk drinking was not very popular among the upper classes, but butter and cheese were certainly used by everyone, and became a part of commercial exchange. Perhaps it was a situation where the poor serfs made do with some leftover buttermilk and whey? Tenant farmers might have been in a different situation. However, it seems to me from these papers that the widespread drinking of cow's milk is a very recent development, which I didn't previously understand.

Tabaccus Maximus
19-02-14, 23:07
However, it seems to me from these papers that the widespread drinking of cow's milk is a very recent development, which I didn't previously understand.


The modern promotion of cow's milk is probably mostly tied to Quakerism in the US and UK. The Quakers promoted its consumption believing 'it does the body good' to use a cliche, and for that, securing about 1/4 of the real estate of the modern US grocery store for isles of Quaker cereals and milk cases. The belief of 'milk powers' might have older roots in radical reformism or earlier.

I would say, however, that drinking raw milk would have been fairly common for a country person. Cows would have been milked in the morning, in any age, and excess taken with other high calorie foods.

An interesting note:
Having travelled around the world on different continents, one thing surprising to me as an American are the grocery stores in other countries.

I don't believe I have ever seen any milk, milk products of any sort at all, in Japanese, Korean or SE Asian stores.
They do like soft serve ice cream, but that is about it.

In the Middle East and Africa, milk is sold, but it is fake milk mostly derived from powder.

hope
19-02-14, 23:08
Milk was a big part of the diet in early Ireland.
Sweet milk, sour milk, honey mixed with milk and thick milk [probably cream]. Also dairy products such as cheese, salted and unsalted butter, butter with herbs [ we`re still too fond of butter even to-day]. These were "white foods"[bánbidh].
In the medieval period, a mans wealth and position was [ among other things] measured by the number of cattle he kept. Cattle raiding was a common occurrence.
Milk was a drink for all people of all ranks, however the poor had to sometimes settle for goats milk.

The food of the Irish, according to Strabo, was milk, butter and herbs.
Pomponius Mela, who wrote around AD43 stated: Ireland is perfect for growing grain and so rich in sweet fodder that cattle left to graze unrestrained would literally explode from over-eating. [ the Irish then never made hay].
The 12th century poem Aislinge Meic Conn Gleinne references a fine drink: " of very thick milk, of milk not too thick, the swallowing of which needs chewing"
If I recall correctly Spencer wrote around 1807/9 that Ireland had great soil for pasture, yet he would prefer if the Irish might keep less cattle and obtain more manners..lol.
Different Irish literature talks of cattle, the most famous of course being, Táin Bó Cúailnge and it is given mention in certain legal texts.
Milk and by products are still heavily eaten in Ireland.

LeBrok
19-02-14, 23:31
14th- and 15th-century aristocratic households' diets - dairy produce
amounted to only 1-3% by cost. That's fine because milk and eggs were the cheapest staples of the diet. They were the ubiquitous foods poor ate, that's why milk and eggs are grouped together, and accessible year round. Any meat serving is of high cost value, I would guess 10 fold over milk and eggs. This 3% of cost in milk and eggs as well might have been half of calories intake or more during winter.

There is no problem with milk didn't last long and spoiling. There is fresh milk supply every day. The surplus goes into cheeses, butter, buttermilk. Long winters and lower temps help protect food products.


The medieval period seems to have been one where milk drinking was not very popular among the upper classes, I wouldn't preoccupied myself with upper class diet. We are talking about 1% of society. Unfortunately the written records mostly described their habits and not the village population which always constituted 80-90% of total demographics.

Raw milk brings benefit of vitamin D3 supply in winter months. About 500 IU in one liter of milk. Important for North Europe.

I think it is quite evident why North Europe benefited more than South from lactose tolerance and milk consumptions.
- long winter, plants don't grow for 4-6 months.
- lots of pastures and huge supply of hay, wet and warm summers
- one cow supplies 6,000 calories a day, and extra vitamin D. Essential during long winter.

There are archeological evidence of milk use and making cheeses by first farmers in central europe at 7,500 BC.

I'm guessing LP allele happened about 7,000 years ago in central north europe in farming/herding societies. It took off rather quickly, thanks to its very beneficial effect for Northern Europe. By Iron Age it was spread to the degree we see in modern populations. However it is very possible that LP allele happened sooner and more south, and only took off when transplanted farther North with farmers migration.

sparkey
19-02-14, 23:49
The modern promotion of cow's milk is probably mostly tied to Quakerism in the US and UK. The Quakers promoted its consumption believing 'it does the body good' to use a cliche, and for that, securing about 1/4 of the real estate of the modern US grocery store for isles of Quaker cereals and milk cases.

You do know that the Quaker Oats Company was named after Quakers, but wasn't founded by Quakers and was never owned by Quakers?

Aberdeen
20-02-14, 00:44
If you read a classic such as "The Cattle Raid of Cooley", it's easy to see how much the Celts valued cows, and the bulls that could help produce strong, healthy cows. And I remember reading somewhere that in the ancient Celtic world a milk cow was worth three or four steers, which suggests that cows were valued primarily for their milk. Milk could be drunk fresh, or turned into buttermilk, butter or cheese. Cheese was likely a staple food in much of northern Europe, although probably eaten by the majority more than by the upper class.