Water Kefir is an easy and inexpensive way to grow your own Probiotics
Water kefir is a probiotic beverage made with water kefir grains that can easily be grown at home. Water kefir grains can be used to culture sugar water, juice, or coconut water simply by adding the water kefir grains. A powdered Kefir Starter Culture may also be used to culture coconut water or fruit juice, but the first round of fermentation is in water only. Water kefir grains consist of bacteria and yeast existing in a symbiotic (mutually beneficial) relationship. The term kefir grains describes the look of the culture only, as the kefir expands, it looks like little bags or bubbles. Water kefir grains contain no actual “grains” such as wheat, rye, etc and are a lactose free way for you to get your probiotics. Dr. Fred Schofield, at Atlas Chiropractic, is constantly exploring ways to live a ‘100 year healthy life style’ and has incorporated water kefir into his daily nutritional program.
Benefits of Probiotics
Recent studies on probiotics have been linked to improved digestion, immune function, anti-depression, learning and focus. Rather than just something to add into your diet or nutrition program to get a little healthier, probiotics and gut function importance are coming into a new light. A human being’s normal gut bacteria may be the most important single aspect of health care. Gut function is now being seen as the key to absorbing nutrients, immune function and brain function.
Making Water Kefir
Here is a simple way you can make your own water kefir at home.
What you need:
½ Gallon mason jars
2/3 cup sugar
¼ tsp. aluminum-free baking powder
2 tbsp. organic sucanat
2 cups water kefir grains
Put sugar, baking powder, and sucanat in a mason jar, fill half way with water (don’t use tap water). After you fill up half way, stir with a plastic spoon (no metal), then add 2 cups of water kefir grains. Fill water to the top of the line on the mason jar. Do not screw lid on tight, leave loose. The grains will grow better if you keep jars in a warm room. Let the jars sit for at least 3 days and no longer than 5 days. If the taste is too sweet let it sit for another day, but don’t let it get sour.
When you strain the grains, remember, no metal utensils. For example, use a plastic colander over a plastic bowl. Have ready some clean mason jars with your choice of fruit on the bottom. For example, 1 ring of fresh pineapple, 1/4th of a green apple, a whole dried peach, or any non-sulfured dried fruit, or even 4 peeled slices of ginger
After you pour your strained water kefir over your fruit lined mason jar, screw the lid on tight. Let it sit out one day (this will give it a second fermentation to get some fizz) then you can refrigerate and enjoy!
With the remaining grains in your colander, rinse thoroughly with spring water and make a new batch. You will have extra grains, so share with a friend, make more or throw away.