With a number of well being advantages, it’s no shock that kefir is changing into more and more widespread. Right here’s all the pieces you must learn about this fermented drink.
You may need seen kefir in your grocery store fridge in quite a lot of manufacturers and flavours.
Much like yoghurt however thinner in consistency, kefir is a cultured, fermented milk drink that originated 1000’s of years in the past from the mountainous area that divides Asia and Europe.
Its identify comes from the Turkish phrase keyif, which suggests “feeling good after consuming”.
Revered as an historical miracle meals, kefir has stored its well being halo over the centuries for good motive, naturopath Chloe Chivers says.
“Kefir is a probiotic drink containing many various strains of fine micro organism that may assist improve the range of useful micro organism in your intestine microbiome which, in flip, gives plenty of necessary well being advantages to many different components of your physique,” Chloe says.
So, what precisely is kefir?
Historically made with cow’s or goat’s milk, the drink is made by including kefir grains to take advantage of, dietitian Rebecca Flavel says.
“These aren’t cereal grains however clusters of complicated microorganisms of micro organism, yeasts and enzymes that look a bit like tiny cauliflower florets in look,” Rebecca explains.
“You place them within the milk and the cultures feed on the lactose, or the pure sugars within the milk, and ferment to create a wealthy probiotic milk.
“The microbes additionally produce carbon dioxide, which is what offers kefir the marginally fizzy style.”
Kefir will also be made with water, together with sugar water, fruit juices or coconut water, and is nice for vegans or those that wish to keep away from dairy.
What are the well being advantages of kefir?
In accordance with Chloe, kefir is nutrient-rich, with milk kefir containing calcium, B12, magnesium, vitamin K2, folates and dwelling enzymes.
It additionally tends to include extra gut-friendly microorganisms and a greater variety of micro organism strains than yoghurt.
“Initially, it helps intestine well being – so in case you have intestine flora that’s been misplaced or unbalanced by means of an excessive amount of alcohol or stress, consuming unhealthy fried or closely processed meals, or taking antibiotics, then together with kefir in your weight-reduction plan goes to assist rebuild that array of fine micro organism,” Chloe says.
“That’s a win-win as a result of round 80 per cent of your immune system cells reside in your intestine; by build up the great micro organism, you’re supporting immunity and decreasing irritation.”
Science can be discovering that kefir could management blood sugar, assist digestive well being and decrease ldl cholesterol, in addition to help in weight administration.
How do you’re taking kefir?
“Kefir will be taken by itself as a drink, or change into a part of your breakfast combined with recent fruit and granola,” Chloe suggests.
Or, make it right into a nourishing dessert combined with nuts and uncooked honey.
“Simply bear in mind to not warmth it up and kill off the micro organism – uncooked and chilly is greatest!” she provides.
“Or strive utilizing it to make salad dressings, or as a base for a dipping sauce,” Rebecca suggests.
“You possibly can add it into your smoothie instead of almond or coconut milk and in home made frozen desserts; and you’ll even use it as a substitute of milk to make your muffins additional fluffy.”
How a lot kefir do you want?
Our consultants agree that kefir generally is a wholesome (and sure, scrumptious) addition to a well-rounded weight-reduction plan; nevertheless, ingesting an excessive amount of can result in digestive points.
It does include carbohydrates (round 10 to 13 grams per cup) so those that want to observe their every day carb allotment, equivalent to individuals with diabetes, could have to restrict their consumption.
For greatest outcomes, Chloe recommends sticking to round half to at least one cup a day; and checking for added sugar within the grocery store manufacturers.
Easy methods to make your personal kefir at house
In case you’re not too positive which in-store selection to decide on, you’ll be able to simply make your personal.
Kefir grains can be found in some well being meals shops and supermarkets, in addition to on-line.
Simply do not forget that the grains for milk kefir are totally different to these used for water kefir.
“The method is de facto easy and there are many on-line movies that present you the way to do it – all you really want is your grains, liquid and a clear jar with a lid,” Rebecca says.
Written by Liz McGrath.