Derived from the Turkish word, keyif, kefir means “good feeling.” Not only do most people find kefir to be great tasting, the potential health benefits of adding kefir to your diet can be significant. Here are a few:
- It is nutrient dense, delivering vitamins A, B, D, K and minerals calcium and magnesium. Also, nine grams of protein and only 104 calories per cup for full fat, homemade kefir!
- It has more strains of probiotics than yogurt – up to 60 strains of bacteria & yeast which help restore levels of healthy bacteria in the gut.
- Antibacterial – it protects against infections.
- It can help regulate blood sugar and has cardiovascular benefits.
- Great for bone health. Full fat kefir contains vitamin K2 which is important for calcium metabolism and the protein, magnesium & phosphorous are great for muscle health.
- Believed to reduce tumor growth by stimulating the immune system.
- It’s low in lactose as lactose is consumed by the bacteria during the fermentation process. Some sources say it is reduced by as much as 99%, however, always check with your health care team if you have lactose intolerance issues.
- It is available at most grocery stores, and it is easy to make at home.
How do you get it into your diet?
- Purchase it premade. Just be a good label reader and avoid added sugars and thickeners.
- Make it from a starter, such as Cultures for Health Kefir Starter https://culturesforhealth.com/collections/cultured-favorites . This is a freeze dried powder you simply stir into full fat raw or pasteurized milk and let the covered jar rest on your counter out of direct sun for 24 hours. A quarter cup of the new fermentation can be reserved to start another new batch of kefir. Full directions are included with purchase. This is a great place to start when new to making kefir.
- Ready for the full experience? Purchase live grains online, refresh them, and then make an unlimited amount of kefir as long as you keep the grains happy. I like and bought my organic grains at fusionteas.com/fresh-milk-kefir-grains-organic/ The owner also sends a comprehensive e-book AND he is available by email or text to offer exceptional customer service support.
Once you get the hang of it, there are dozens of ways to blend kefir into smoothies, salad dressings, dips, make it into a lovely “cream cheese” with nothing more than a strainer and a coffee filter, and more!