All About Kefir
Kefir is a fermented drink that’s similar to yogurt. The name “kefir” refers to both the group of microorganisms that are used to make the drink and the drink itself.
To make kefir, the kefir grains are mixed with cow or goat milk. The microorganisms are fermented with the milk sugars until it eventually forms kefir. The fermentation process takes around 24 hours.
Once the fermentation process is complete, the grains can be removed and used again for another batch of kefir. This drink has a taste that’s similar to yogurt, but it has a thinner consistency.
Benefits of kefir
Kefir is a probiotic food, which means that it contains living microorganisms that thrive in the gut, helping to balance out intestinal bacteria.
As a result, fermented kefir can be useful in the fight against certain digestive problems, such as diarrhea, irritable bowel syndrome, and bacterial infections.
Osteoporosis and bone health
This milk-based, fat-rich drink is a great source of calcium and vitamin K2; both are essential nutrients for healthy bones and warding off osteoporosis.
On top of that, kefir can help bone cells to absorb more calcium, which helps bone density and prevents fractures.
Kefir also contains a unique probiotic, Lactobacillus kefiri , which can halt the growth of harmful bacteria such as, H. Pylori, salmonella, and E. coli.
In addition, this drink also contains a carbohydrate that’s known for its antibacterial properties: kefiran.
In addition, kefir also contains a lactic acid bacteria, this converts lactose into lactic acid. It contains enzymes that help decompose lactose; thus, people who suffer from lactose intolerance don’t usually have problems with kefir.
On a similar note, you can make kefir with other liquids besides milk (fruit juice, tea, and coconut water) This means that you can also enjoy kefir options that are 100 percent lactose-free.
Some test-tube studies have shown that kefir can help to prevent the growth of cancerous cells.
The probiotics found in kefir can reduce the formation of carcinogenic compounds, stopping tumors from growing.
However, human-testing is yet to determine if kefir can really be effective against cancer.
How to make fermented kefir at home
Though you can find quality kefir at supermarkets, it’s such an easy recipe that it’s worth making at home. To get started, we’ll show you what ingredients you’ll need and the steps that you’ll need to follow.
- One or two tablespoons of kefir grains
- One bowl, with a lid
- Two cups of milk
- In a bowl, add the kefir grains and the milk. Don’t fill it up completely, leave at least one centimeter from the top.
- Depending on your personal preference, add a fat-rich cream for a thicker result.
- After, all you need to do is cover the container and leave it for at least 12-36 hours at room temperature.
- Check the kefir every once in a while. When you see that it starts to become lumpy in texture, strain the liquid, separating it from the kefir grains.
- Now, your homemade kefir is fermented and ready. However, if you prefer to drink it chilled, move it to the fridge for a while, then enjoy.
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- de Moreno de Leblanc, A., Matar, C., Farnworth, E., & Perdigón, G. (2007). Study of immune cells involved in the antitumor effect of kefir in a murine breast cancer model. Journal of Dairy Science, 90(4), 1920–1928. https://doi.org/10.3168/jds.2006-079
- Montesdeoca, M., & Pablo, J. (2021). La utilización de Harina de arroz y Kefir de leche, en productos de Panificación. Quito: Universidad Hemisferios 2021.