I was recently turned on to the advantages of water and coconut milk kefir. I had always thought that kefir had to be cultured with cow or goats milk so I had not given it another thought since I have given up dairy.
First off, kefir is a polysaccharide chain that is compromised of both probiotic bacteria and yeasts working in a symbiotic relationship. The culture in kefir is more complex than in yogurt because of these relationships. Each batch of kefir may vary just a little bit as far as the strain of bacteria because the grains have been split so many times. However the following probiotics and yeast are what are in most of the water kefir: Lactobacillus brevis, Lactobacillus casei rhamnosus , Lactobacillus alactosus, Lactobacillus casei casei, Lactobacillus pseudoplantarum, Lactobacillus plantarum, Streptococcus lactis, Streptococcus cremeris, Leuconostoc mesenteroide, Saccharomyces florentinus, Saccharomyces pretoriensis, Kloeckera apiculata, Candida lambica, Candida valida.
You may ask, why are these so Important? Well let me tell you, the probiotics fight things like salmonella and e coli and help keep your immune system healthy.
You may wonder why you would want to drink this beverage on a daily basis. First of all you want to get a good dose of your probiotics daily. Kefir is a great way to get a number of different probiotic strains that will strengthen your intestinal tract and fight off the bad guys. Having all of that good bacteria and yeast also helps the food move faster through your system as well that leaves less of a chance of something disagreeable being where it doesn’t belong. Secondly the beverage has a high dose of B2, B12, magnesium and vitamin K. It is in a food form of vitamins so your body accepts them easily.
Kefir strains are fun to grow and have endless possibilities. We will be having a workshop on February 18, 2010 from 7-8:30PM in the small meeting room at the San Marcos Public Library showing you how to grow your own kefir grains.