Freshly prepared Milk Kefir is an extremely healthy sour milk drink, which is produced during the fermentation of milk with Kefir fungus. But the Milk Kefir should not be confused with the “dead” Kefir from the supermarket, because contrary to this, the fresh made Milk Kefir contains a considerable amount of living microorganisms that can give our health a helping hand.
What exactly is Milk Kefir?
The traditional Milk Kefir is made from Kefir grains of Tibetan or Caucasian Kefir fungus and looks a bit like cauliflower. At first, the grains are, with about 5mm, quite small, but will grow within a few weeks to 10 times, before they decay again into smaller Kefir grains and continue to multiply.
The kefir grains are formed by clumping yeasts and lactobacilli. The milk sugar (lactose) contained in the milk, works as a source of food for the bacteria and allows them to multiply very quickly. In this way, the milk or the kefir becomes acidic, contains nearly no lactose and thus is quite drinkable even for lactose intolerant people.
The fermentation produces, among other things, some carbon dioxide, which gives the Milchkefir a tingling taste. But also a small amount of alcohol is produced during this process. The alcohol content may be up to 2.5% depending on the duration of the application and the selected temperature.
That’s why Milk Kefir is a real superfood!
The Milk Kefir has a digestive effect and keeps the intestinal flora in balance. In the age of allergies and food intolerances, which have their origin in the intestine, the Milk Kefir can be astonishingly successful.
Especially with dys bacteria after taking antibiotics, the Milk Kefir is highly recommended. The contained lactic acid bacteria and yeasts, keep pathogenic germs at bay, regulate the intestinal pH, ensure healthy intestinal mucosa and much more.
Because of this Milk Kefir is used in following health problems:
- Intestinal infections
- Digestive problems
- Food intolerances
- Chronic fatigue
- Weak Immune System
- High cholesterol
- Intestinal cramps
- Stomach ulcers
According to scientific studies, one milliliter of Milk Kefir contains more than a billion lactic acid bacteria and more than a million different yeast colonies. Such high concentrations are not found in probiotics and, above all, not at such an unbeatable low price.
And that’s not all: The microorganisms which are contained in the Milk Kefir also produce a wide range of vitamins and minerals, so that you, under certain circumstances, can save on the regular intake of expensive vitamin supplements.
The following bacteria, yeasts, vitamins and minerals are contained in the Milk Kefir:
- Lactobacillus Kefir
- Lactobacillus acidophilus
- Lactobacillus bulgaricus
- Streptococcus lactis
- Saccharomyces Kefir
- Saccharomyces cerevisiae
- Candida Kefir (not to be confused with the harmful Candida albicans)
If organic whole milk is used for the production of Milk Kefir, other nutrients are produced as well. Particularly noteworthy here would be the omega-3 fatty acids. Depending on the fermentation time and temperature, the content of lactic acid bacteria and yeasts varies. When proceeded for 48 hours, the Milk Kefir contains more lactic acid bacteria than after a 24-hour fermentation period.
If a fermentation temperature of around 25 degrees is chosen, predominantly lactic acid bacteria are formed, and just a little bit of alcohol. If the fermentation temperature is below 20 degrees, more yeasts are formed and in addition more alcohol and carbon dioxide.
Applying Milk Kefir by yourself – this is how it works!
First, of course, you need the kefir grains. You can get these in health food stores or order them online. The second ingredient is the milk. Basically you can use any kind of milk: cow’s milk, goat’s milk, soy milk, coconut milk or almond milk.
Place the kefir grains in an absolutely clean mason jar and fill with milk. It is recommended to remove the rubber from the lid of the jar, because of the production of carbon dioxide during the fermentation process. If the jar is completely hermetically sealed, it may burst.
The jar then must be covered with a kitchen towel or similar to protect the Kefir from light. Use the help of a room thermometer to select a suitable place for the storage of the kefir. A temperature between 10 and 25 degrees should be aimed for an optimally work of the Kefir fungus.
The warmer the place, the faster the fermentation proceeds. But also more lactic acid bacteria arise. But the alcohol content decreases and also fewer yeast fungi can multiply.
The fermentation time usually is about 48 hours, but also can be set shorter. But after 48 hours, it can be assumed that the milk sugar of the milk has been almost completely eliminated. During this time, a decent amount of probiotic microorganisms should have arisen and the kefir have developed its tingling, sour taste.
It is important to strain the Kefir with the help of a plastic sieve, and also does not touch the kefir fungus with metallic objects, as it can be damaged otherwise. Then you can rinse the jar and start again. If you want to take milk kefir permanently, you should get at least two or three jars and apply an appropriate amount of kefir, for an optimally supply.
The Kefir fungus can be used again and again, as the fungus continues to grow and divide. If too much kefir fungus has formed, simply dispose the excess or give it away to friends.
Why I use Milk Kefir
As long as I can think I have been suffering from bowel problems and also have strong problems of various flora shifts in the intestine. I came across the Milk Kefir by detours and I need to say that the effect is really significant after a short time.
After two days you can already notice how the skin changes. It gets incredibly soft and pure. At first, I thought I fancied that, but when my wife and a few friends tried it too, they were able to confirm it.
The digestion has improved and the bloated abdomen has decreased. Thus, I can only confirm that the balance of intestinal bacteria seems to improve. In a few months, I will order a stool analysis again, to see if the situation has improved. I will post the results here.
- milk-kefir: © vaaseenaa - Fotolia.com