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Vanbelle

Your thoughts on kefir?

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Hey everyone. I keep hearing about kefir and the "kefir grains." I know you can make it in cow's milk, goat's milk, coconut milk, or even coconut water. Those I've heard of.

Kefir is a fermented milk drink that originated with shepherds of the North Caucasus region, who discovered that fresh milk carried in leather pouches would occasionally ferment into an effervescent beverage. It is prepared by inoculating cow, goat, or sheep's milk with kefir grains.

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Kefir is very good for you. I've been drinking it since I was a baby.

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Guest davidtheskinking

The biggest health benefit of kefir is obviously the probiotics within it... At the same time you can get probiotics from sauerkraut or kim-chi or any other cultured vegetable and those are dairy free and do not contain IGF 1's...

So kefir is good, and has it's benefits... But I would recommend cultured vegetables as well.

Hope this helps!

David

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The biggest health benefit of kefir is obviously the probiotics within it... At the same time you can get probiotics from sauerkraut or kim-chi or any other cultured vegetable and those are dairy free and do not contain IGF 1's...

So kefir is good, and has it's benefits... But I would recommend cultured vegetables as well.

Hope this helps!

David

Hey David,

It does help thank you! I have heard this before. Can you recommend any fermented vegetables that I can easily buy and eat? I don't mean to be picky, but I'm not a fan of sauerkraut or kim-chi, lol. :) And I could drink raw milk or kefir all day. I think it tastes great.

What say you? :)

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Milk products are typically pasteurized before being sold. This kills all the bacteria in them and with them the pro-biotic properties of the products. In other words: Yogurt, Kefir etc. are useless. Raw milk products have too many health risks and are therefore not recommended either.

If you want pro-biotics try raw unpasteurized sauerkraut. It's only available from autumn to spring though. If you want sauerkraut in summer you have to ferment it yourself.

Edited by VeganSunrise

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Milk products are typically pasteurized before being sold. This kills all the bacteria in them and with them the pro-biotic properties of the products. In other words: Yogurt, Kefir etc. are useless. Raw milk products have too many health risks and are therefore not recommended either.

If you want pro-biotics try raw unpasteurized sauerkraut. It's only available from autumn to spring though. If you want sauerkraut in summer you have to ferment it yourself.

I would disagree. Pasteurization does kill bacteria, but there is a distinction between raw milk for sale and raw milk that is intended for pasteurization. In California, there is an extremely high standard for raw milk intended for sale. It must go through tons of testing before it can hit grocery store shelves. I was able to get raw milk at a grocery store some 20 minutes away, from good grass-fed cows. The same company sells raw kefir too. Really awesome company that's health-conscious and all that. But, I've been scared to go back because of the inherent hormones and IGF-1 in milk though. Thoughts?

Sauerkraut...mmm...lol I'm too picky. Thank you for the tip.

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I love kefir, however, the store-bought kefir and starter packs are crap in comparison to using your own healthy kefir grains. These can be bought online or found through online communities where people distribute their excess grains for free.

Another alternative to milk kefir for anyone who still can't tolerate fermented dairy or would prefer not to consume it, you could always try water kefirs.... my personal favorite is coconut water kefir. it tastes like a coconut water champagne almost. http://coconutkefir.org

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Yeah you guys are so lucky in California. The only state that sells raw milk right in grocery stores, f'n awesome. Sarah if you can get raw organic grass fed goats/sheep milk jump all over it. Then if ya want you can make kefir/yogurt and have the perfect health food.

Cali has always been one step ahead of the game, I'm moving out west and have been tinkering to see if I'd be able to survive there with the high cost of living. I've been looking at AZ as my top contender and then just drive to Cali whenever. Any of you live on your own? What's your rent? How are jobs there right now? Sorry to get off topic lol :silenced:

Edited by Thehoper

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Hey Thehoper,

California is awesome. :D I'm 19, still slumming it with the 'rents until I graduate, or until I find roommates to get a place to stay. I live in the bay area, so my location is pretty pricey. You can find good rentals in a nice location, and if you can get a roommate, I think you'll be fine. Most 2-bedroom apartments are 1200/month average where I live, but you can find other living situations for around 600/month average. The prices drop with location I should add!

So you think I should jump on the milk? You think the hormones and IGF-1 stuff everyone talks about, are negligible in comparison to the benefits?

Another alternative to milk kefir for anyone who still can't tolerate fermented dairy or would prefer not to consume it, you could always try water kefirs.... my personal favorite is coconut water kefir. it tastes like a coconut water champagne almost. http://coconutkefir.org

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I started culturing kefir about 6 months ago, using kefir grains I bought from a Russian woman who runs a spa in our town. For the first few weeks I began cultivating the kefir I couldn't stop drinking the "stuff", it was addictive. The grains multiplied so quickly that I began eating them, also, and even making "chesse" out of them. I gave grains to friends and parents, encouraging them to cultivate their own kefir.

The one person I cannot interest in the kefir is my daughter, who has a funky immune system that gives her skin eruptions and yeast (candida) overgrowth. All her life she has used antibiotics on- and off- for ear infections, throat infections, eye infections, folliculitis, UTIs...she's now in her late teens and is on her 4th week of oral antibiotics (first Doxy, now Keflex) on top of Diflucan to rid her facial skin of yeast overgrowth and secondary acne.

I tried to explain to my daughter about the vicious cycle of antibiotics and candida overgrowth and compromised immune system (90% of the immune system is in the gut). But daughter just wants to take a pill, use a cream, and be done with it. Today, though, is actually the first time she listened to me.

Anyway, I have seen firsthand what kefir can do for immune systems. My husband has suffered bad allergies and asthma, and since he has started drinking kefir (by the way, he's lactose intolerant, and kefIir doesn't bother him at all) he hasn't had to take any medicines.

I have just started cultivating water kefir (grains bought from the same source) and I ate some of the grains today. They are a bit different in consistency (water grains are firmer, milk grains are chewier) but the water kefir is very tasty. My understanding is that wtaer and milk kefir both have some of the same probiotics, yet in different ratios, and may also have different probiotics,

The Russian lady who sold me the grains told me that in Russia "they" put live grains on their face if they have a (her words) "complexion problem".

IF I can get my daughter to start taking kefir I will post the results. All she has to do is look at me --I had a terrible complexion [acne, sun damage] my entire life, but here I am now 50 with the skin of a 30 year-old.

Edited by kimanjo

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I started culturing kefir about 6 months ago, using kefir grains I bought from a Russian woman who runs a spa in our town. For the first few weeks I began cultivating the kefir I couldn't stop drinking the "stuff", it was addictive. The grains multiplied so quickly that I began eating them, also, and even making "chesse" out of them. I gave grains to friends and parents, encouraging them to cultivate their own kefir.

The one person I cannot interest in the kefir is my daughter, who has a funky immune system that gives her skin eruptions and yeast (candida) overgrowth. All her life she has used antibiotics on- and off- for ear infections, throat infections, eye infections, folliculitis, UTIs...she's now in her late teens and is on her 4th week of oral antibiotics (first Doxy, now Keflex) on top of Diflucan to rid her facial skin of yeast overgrowth and secondary acne.

I tried to explain to my daughter about the vicious cycle of antibiotics and candida overgrowth and compromised immune system (90% of the immune system is in the gut). But daughter just wants to take a pill, use a cream, and be done with it. Today, though, is actually the first time she listened to me.

Anyway, I have seen firsthand what kefir can do for immune systems. My husband has suffered bad allergies and asthma, and since he has started drinking kefir (by the way, he's lactose intolerant, and kefIir doesn't bother him at all) he hasn't had to take any medicines.

I have just started cultivating water kefir (grains bought from the same source) and I ate some of the grains today. They are a bit different in consistency (water grains are firmer, milk grains are chewier) but the water kefir is very tasty. My understanding is that wtaer and milk kefir both have some of the same probiotics, yet in different ratios, and may also have different probiotics,

The Russian lady who sold me the grains told me that in Russia "they" put live grains on their face if they have a (her words) "complexion problem".

IF I can get my daughter to start taking kefir I will post the results. All she has to do is look at me --I had a terrible complexion [acne, sun damage] my entire life, but here I am now 50 with the skin of a 30 year-old.

and do you put your great skin only down to the kefir?

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Guest davidtheskinking

kefir has a lot of health benefits but at the same time it is dairy and most people don't have the digestive enzymes in place to handle kefir okay.

I recommend saurkraut or kim-chi instead because you get the probiotics from these as well.

Or you can culture your own vegetables, check out the "body ecology diet" book to learn more about that.

Milk also has IGF 1's which are insulin growth factors which isn't great... So that's another reason to stay away from milk!

Hope this helps!

David

P.S. there are health benefits but overall you can get those health benefits from other non-dairy sources which are more beneficial overall.

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^^I'm someone who can't digest any dairy, and I drink almost a quart of raw organic goat kefir a day with no problems. Raw vs processed is apples and oranges. The benefits far outweigh any negatives. Stuff is magic.

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^^I'm someone who can't digest any dairy, and I drink almost a quart of raw organic goat kefir a day with no problems. Raw vs processed is apples and oranges. The benefits far outweigh any negatives. Stuff is magic.

So that's the ultimate consensus? When drinking raw kefir, the benefits outweigh IGF-1 and all that?

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I'm from Eastern Europe, so kefir is pretty common/available here.

I have kefir for breakfast every morning. It has really helped with some of my digestive issues, which imo were down to dysbiosis..

Anyway, I don't drink milk, because I don't digest it well. But there's no problems with kefir. It's super good for your health and everyone should drink it anyway, regardless of whether it helps their skin or not!

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The only dairy product I would even recommend to people is kefir. It's just digested much easier by the body and thus the nutrients are utilized better.

It's more or less like drinking lactose-reduced milk.

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If you are lactose intolerant you won't have any probs with live yoghurt or kefir. I have also not had any problems with either despite having probs with casein. If you check out Dr. Art Ayer's site, Cooling Inflammation (which I reckon anyone with inflammatory acne should check out as it's really relevant) he says that anyone can get over lactose intolerance by taking small amounts of dairy (non fermented) every day for about 2 weeks. Your body will make the necessary enzymes to digest it. It's actually avoiding these foods that make you intolerant in the end. However, personally I'm not that interested in taking dairy unfermented as the fermenting process a) makes things taste more exciting and b) makes them more nutritious and c) gets rid of the casein problem for me.

Sauerkraut/kimchi etc are all really great, the only thing I'll say is if you want to get a load of probiotics it's a lot easier to drink a lot of kefir, whereas you will be struggling to get a massive amount of sauerkraut down you on a daily basis. It is also very quick and painless to make kefir, while sauerkraut etc takes more time. However, there's definitely a lot to be said for fermented vegetables.

Kefir contains many more VARIETIES of bacteria/yeasts than yoghurt or fermented vegetables and it's the variety of mirco-organisms that's important not so much the quantity of each organism you're ingesting. If you check out the link above Dr Ayres mentions that in the healthy human gut there should be about 150 or so bacterial species (I think). So, if you've got gut dysbiosis (because of antibiotic use, the Pill, illness etc) trying to get that variety back by eating a small pot of yoghurt a day (with only two or three strains) it's just not going to happen. According to him - get the bacteria back includes taking fermented products and very importantly eating a wide variety of vegetables (which feed these bacteria in the lower gut). This might include eating slightly dirty organic veg as these will contain soil organisms which will also add to the good bacterial mix in the gut. Of course, exercise caution here as you don't want to be eating too much pathogenic bacteria at the same time! But you get the picture: it has to be an all out assault on putting bacteria back into the gut, over a good few months at least.

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Just adding onto what everyone said, make sure you get good quality kefir grains, because often times (especially if you buy dehydrated strains) they'll only have 1-3 bacterial strains and you want several. Different bacteria occupy different areas of your digestive tract. You want as many good bacteria as possible,

Edited by chunkylard

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