What Is Water Kefir? Benefits, Uses, and a Recipe
In the last few years, a healthy and balanced diet has become more important to many people. It’s no longer strange to hear people talk about nutrition, or being careful about what they eat. We have even added a whole new set of words to talk about it. Maybe you’ve heard people talk about water kefir, but do you know what it is?
In this article we’ll tell you everything you need to know about water kefir, from its uses and benefits to how to prepare it in the comfort of your own home! Don’t miss out!
What is water kefir?
It’s a drink fermented through microbial cultures of the same name, also known as SCOBY (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast). That’s to say that a colony of lactic and acetic bacteria, yeasts, and microorganisms work symbiotically on milk or water, depending on if you want to make milk kefir or water kefir, to get a fermented drink.
For the kefir to ferment the water, you need to dissolve some nutrients in it that will turn it into an optimal environment for the development of your microbial culture. We’ll talk more about that when we show you how to prepare this drink at home.
Benefits and uses of water kefir
Surely you’re asking yourself why it’s good to drink water kefir. Well, we’re about to tell you its main benefits and uses:
Water kefir, just like milk kefir and yogurt, contains live microorganisms that improve metabolic functions, helping to combat slow digestion. Since it’s a fermented product, it’s full of microorganisms that are beneficial for your microbiome.
Read also: What are Probiotics Used For?
2. Improve your intestinal flora
By increasing the number of lactic bacteria in your intestine, you’re improving your intestinal flora and helping your body eliminate pathogens. Due to this, you can enjoy better intestinal health.
3. Antibacterial properties
Some studies indicate that the probiotics of kefir, Lactobacillus kefiri being one of them, can inhibit the growth of different bacteria in the body, like Salmonella, E. coli, and Helicobacter pylory. On the other hand, the carbohydrate “kefiran” from kefir also has antibacterial properties.
4. It could lower your cholesterol
There aren’t currently many studies about it, but some data indicates that this drink could help improve or control the levels of bad cholesterol in your body.
Water kefir is an isotonic drink , which means that it’s perfect for rehydrating you. Additionally, since it’s low in calories, it can be included in your weight loss plans.
Water kefir recipe
Kefir grains have a bland and gelatinous texture, similar to cauliflower. Milk kefir grains are whitish, while water kefir grains are transparent.
It’s important to know the difference in order to be able to use the correct culture to ferment the drink that you want. Let’s look at how to prepare this fermented drink:
- 1 liter of mineral water
- 3 soup spoons of whole cane sugar
- 1/2 of a lemon (optional)
- 3 heaped tablespoons of water kefir grains
- A large glass container, with a wide mouth and a plastic or glass lid (not metal)
- A wooden spoon
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- First, pour the liter of water into the glass container.
- Then, add the kefir grains, sugar, and if you want to add a little flavor, the juice of a lemon.
- Stir well with the wooden spoon. You can also close the container and shake it.
- Next, let the mixture sit for two or three days at room temperature (between 15 and 30 degrees Celsius, or 59 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit). During the fermentation process, the kefir grains will eat the sugar and create organic acids, fermenting the water.
- Enjoy your drink and its benefits!
General information about water kefir
- If you bottle it well, the fermented drink can keep its nutritional characteristics for a year.
- Once opened, you should keep it in the refrigerator.
- Since it doesn’t contain dairy, it’s perfect for people with lactose intolerance and food allergies.
As you’ve seen, it’s very easy to make water kefir. Why don’t you try to make it and benefit from its nutrients? Consult a doctor to obtain more information about kefir and its health benefits. Additionally, we always recommend that you talk to your doctor to find out if they recommend kefir, just in case you have any allergies or health problems that could cause you problems.
All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.
- Oak SJ., Jha R., The effects of probiotics in lactose intolerance: a systematic review. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr, 2019. 59 (11): 1675-1683.
- Wischmeyer PE., McDonald D., Knight R., Role of microbiome, probiotics and dysbiosis therapy in critical illness. Curr Opin Crit Care, 2016. 22 (4): 347-53.