Homemade Coconut Kefir – Probiotic Elixir
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Homemade Coconut Kefir – any way you look at it- is a miracle food.
Although it is considered a tropical fruit, coconut is more prevalent than ever, and people are now enjoying this fruit that, in the not too distant past was associated only with outlying exotic islands. We’ve learned many things about its uses and benefits.
Until recently was consumed only as coconut flakes, used in unhealthy deserts, now is being consumed as cocoa butter, raw coconut cream, coconut flour, coconut milk and unsweetened shredded coconut and coconut flakes.
But beyond these healthier forms of coconut, there is a ‘’magical’’ form that many other people don’t know about or even think to consider using in their daily routines.
Coconut kefir is a drink that’s becoming more and more popular because of its incredible health benefits, from strengthening immunity to fight harmful fungi and bacteria.
Although kombucha is a drink that has gained popularity in the world of fermented beverages and foods, coconut kefir is rapidly gaining momentum and is being used by more and more people.
Why plant-based fermented drinks like homemade coconut kefir are important
First, before choosing whether or not you need to eat coconut kefir, it is good to know why fermented foods are essential. We have more bacteria cultures in our body than we do human cells.
We’re more composed of bacteria than anything else, and our bodies contain both good bacteria and harmful bacteria. You’ll never completely get rid of bad bacteria; that’s just part of the human body.
But you want to make sure that you have more good bacteria than bad bacteria. When bad bacteria (such as yeasts, viruses, fungi, etc.) outnumbers the good bacteria (probiotics and prebiotics), you get sick, develop yeast infections, and have symptoms like acne, itching, colds, flu, have chronic digestive pains, some food allergies, food cravings, weight problems, and can even suffer from depression since good bacteria can directly influence brain health.
Fermented foods like cultured vegetables, yogurt, kombucha, kefir, chocolate and pickles, all carry natural sources of probiotics.
You can also take a probiotic supplement or consume prebiotics (such as onions, asparagus, garlic, bananas, and others) that nourish good bacteria.
Antibiotics, pesticides, eating meat from animals treated with hormones, stress, contact with fungi, viruses, and harmful cultures, all lower our body’s good bacteria.
But don’t rush for that yogurt just yet – dairy products are not the best option when it comes to bowel health. What would be a better option? Homemade Coconut Kefir!
Homemade Coconut Kefir – How can it help you
Coconut kefir is made from coconut water. It’s a fermented drink made from kefir ‘grains’ which are beneficial bacterial organisms that help in getting good digestion, bowel health, maintain optimal immunity, and can even influence the brain and mood.
Kefir is commonly made with dairy milk since the sugars in milk (lactose) feed the good bacteria. Dairy kefir is highly praised for its health benefits, but the kefir is where the miracle happens- not in the milk it’s cultured in.
Because dairy isn’t the healthiest choice, it is better to try other options to increase the good bacteria culture (as is kefir). Coconut water has natural sugars that support kefir grains just as much as lactose does, but without all the adverse side effects that come along with dairy.
Why is coconut kefir so special?
Coconut contributes to strengthening immunity, has antiviral properties, and has been shown to help maintain a healthy liver and brain.
When in the coconut water or milk kefir grains are added to make coconut kefir, the benefits are endless. Coconut water kefir contains more beneficial strains and organisms than dairy-based kefir or any other yogurt.
Yogurt doesn’t establish good bacteria in the digestive system, but kefir does. Coconut water kefir is also lower in calories than dairy versions, and is much tastier!
It has proven benefits for: cleanse the body, enhance digestion of all foods, flatten the stomach, stimulates a better mood, balance hormones, increase energy, eliminate Candida (harmful fungi), stop the growth of stomach cancer cells, and reduces sugar cravings.
You can buy it, but it is better to make it yourself: how to get this elixir
You can buy coconut kefir at most health food stores. It’s found in the section with the probiotics and will be kept refrigerated. It can be expensive but most bottles contain around 30 servings, and you’ll only need a tablespoon a day to get the benefits.
Or, for those that are crafty in the kitchen, you can make your homemade kefir:
All you have to do is buy water kefir grains, which you can purchase separately, or you can use store purchased coconut kefir to begin.
Once you have your culture starter, you will need a full coconut so you can use the fresh milk from inside it.
Buy a young (white) coconut, not the mature brown ones which are typically lower in nutrients and may even be spoiled. Don’t use bottled coconut water since it lacks in the actual health benefits whole coconuts contain.
Homemade Coconut Kefir Recipe
To make coconut kefir, you can follow these easy directions below:
- First, cut open your coconut, with a large knife. After cutting the coconut open, you’ll need the water to make your kefir and can scrape out the meat (coconut butter) to use for smoothies, desserts, or eat it with a spoon.
- To make your kefir in a blender, mix one serving of purchased kefir grains, or 1 tablespoon of coconut kefir with the coconut water.
- Mix for 30 seconds enough to slightly warm up the mixture. High-powered blenders will do this more efficiently than other mixers, but most blenders will begin to warm up just a bit within 30-60 seconds. (make sure the lid is on good!)
- Once mixed, pour the mix into a large, cleaned glass bowl. You want something glass which will be non-toxic(don’t use plastic).
- Clothe the bowl or pot with a big towel. Make sure it’s capped very well, and then put it in a cold oven to sit at least 1-2 days. Holding it in the oven assures no air drafts will disrupt the fermentation process. In a day or so, check your kefir. It should smell soured but not “wasted” (much like yogurt smells). The mixture should be a bit bubbly, which means it’s alive and healthy!
- After 24 hours, go to the next step and transfer the liquid to a glass bowl for storage in your fridge or you can let it ferment for another 24 hours if you don’t feel it smells “just right.” Do not forget, it should smell like yogurt or store-bought kefir.
How to Use Coconut Kefir
You can use coconut water kefir in smoothies, or just have a tablespoon or two 10-20 minutes after you wake up, in some water with lemon for a better flavor, or mix it with oats.
Don’t add it to hot drinks like tea and coffee because high heat destroys the probiotics.
Coconut water kefir and other naturally fermented beverages are an essential part of nutrition that helps you to maintain good health. You have to take care of the good bacteria, which in turn will take care of you.