What is Kefir?

Kefir is a cultured, creamy product with amazing health attributes.

Kefir’s tart and refreshing flavor is similar to a drinking-style yogurt, but it contains beneficial yeast as well as friendly ‘probiotic’ bacteria found in yogurt. The naturally occurring bacteria and yeast in kefir combine symbiotically to give superior health benefits when consumed regularly. It is loaded with valuable vitamins and minerals and contains easily digestible complete proteins.

For the lactose intolerant, kefir’s abundance of beneficial yeast and bacteria provide lactase, an enzyme which consumes most of the lactose left after the culturing process.

How is Kefir Made?

Kefir can be made from any type of milk, cow, goat or sheep, coconut, rice or soy. Although it is slightly mucous forming, the mucous has a “clean” quality to it that creates ideal conditions in the digestive tract for the colonization of friendly bacteria.

Kefir is made from gelatinous white or yellow particles called “grains.” This makes kefir unique, as no other milk culture forms grains. These grains contain the bacteria/yeast mixture clumped together with casein (milk proteins) and complex sugars. They look like pieces of coral or small clumps of cauliflower and range from the size of a grain of wheat to that of a hazelnut. Some of the grains have been known to grow in large flat sheets that can be big enough to cover your hand!. The grains ferment the milk, incorporating their friendly organisms to create the cultured product. The grains are then removed with a strainer before consumption of the kefir and added to a new batch of milk.

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  • Lobke Verburg

    I have been making Kefir for the past year – or so… but I have never ‘strained’ the kefir? I add the grains, let the milk ‘sit’ for about 36 hours (or until the Kefir starts to settle – where you can see a water liquid, and ‘clumps’ in the liquid), and then pop it into the fridge for another 12 hours. And then I drink it just like that – without straining? I innoculate a new batch with about 100ml of kefir – and I can do this for about 6 new batches until I add new Kefir grains…. is the method I am using correct?

    • Lorrie Meija

      If you strain the kefir, you will always have a steady supply of grains. There will be no need to find “new” grains. The grains you have will multiply. Use a bamboo or plastic strainer for best results.
      After straining the kefir, add the grains to fresh milk, cover the container with a piece of cotton muslin and rubber band, and leave out at room temp. You can refrigerate what you strained.

    • Strain it. This way you just add your grains to the new batch you will never have to buy more grains again.

  • Lala

    I have just started drinking milk kefir (2weeks) and am having a lot of bloating and have put on weight (2-3kgs in 2wks)
    Is this a side effect/detox symptom? If so how long do these side effects tend to last and if your body re adjusts with weight?
    Any feedback is greatly appreciated 🙂

    • Hi Lala,
      From the experience I have had with others with the same thing you are experiencing, I would say, yes it is a side effect of the detoxing, yet I would suggest you cut back slightly on the amount you are taking, but keep up with it. Drink LOTS of good clean water! This may up your weight temporarily but will help greatly with feeling good while your body detoxes, and should have no lasting impressions on your weight. God Bless, Clare

    • ginyghie31

      Bloating is due to the yeast content in the drink. I am a Diet Coach and I am so particular in giving out advise on supplements. If you think of probiotics or amful amount of Phosporous… Plain Yogurt is the best thing!

      • carrie

        I have been introduced to Plexus Pro Bio 5 and it has been life changing. It’s the most powerful and effective Probiotic on the market! Contact me if you would like to get more information.

        [email protected]

      • Veggieman

        Kefir works better for me and others than plain yogurt.

      • Any yogurt purchased from the store has been pasteurized and contains minimal amounts of beneficial bacteria. My daughter contracted reoccurring C. Difficile when she was 3. The doctors prescribed Metronidazole which worked only as long as she was on it. Someone said to buy yogurt that contained the probiotic L casei, which we did and it was of little help. The infectious disease specialist that we were finally sent to recommended high doses of Udos Bowel Formula (probiotics). She said the yogurt contained so little probiotic as to render it useless. For probiotics to be a benefit the numbers have to be so high as to flood the intestinal tract with the good bacteria thereby forcing out the bad (there’s only so much room). Homemade kefir is very potent…very high numbers of beneficial bacteria in a small amount. Yogurt, while tasty, doesn’t even compare.

      • James spiteri

        While yogurt is a good source of probiotic Kefir is far more better because it contains more probiotics.

    • Stephen Hovey

      There’s no such thing as detoxing

      • Yes You

        Yes there is. Its called the liver and kidneys. But you are refering to the scam of the detox industry

        • Phaulonius J Knucklebones

          No there is isn’t. If your liver and kidney need “detoxing” (ie: they are not functioning properly) then you are sick and need to go to the hospital…otherwise the liver and kidneys are NOT toxic and do not need detoxifying. This is a myth.

          • adanazikelam

            Actually what needs detoxing is your intestines. If your digestive system in the intestines is clogged with leftover animal fats/roughage that is sitting there it is putrifying, and releasing toxins back into your body, throwing the chemistry off as well as the plumbing. When you detox, you are flushing out your systems and allowing better absorption of nutrients that are supposed to be there. So, when you drink a detox drink of any type, you are drinking a catalyst that tries to get stuff moving that has been sitting there for 24 hrs or longer and causing some blocking known as levels of constipation. The detox happens when the crap is moved out! And yes, it helps your liver and kidneys to function better without that overload sitting and rotting more in your intestines. All the body systems work together. If one is not working well, the others try to compensate. You know that saying about the A-holes ruling the world? Give that some thought! It’s the entire channel of gut, flora, and nutrients. The last step is evauation….. -ijs!

          • Phaulonius J Knucklebones

            A: the intestines don’t need “detoxifying”…they require motility or catharsis to move food through to allow breakdown and absorption….the food items you claim are “stuck” in the intestines are mechanically or physically present there, not chemically altering the integrity of the intestines so there is no “detoxifying” going on at the intestinal level when one takes a “detox” treatment.

            B: If someone is constipated or has a bowel obstruction, they require a cathartic (ie: lactulose, coffee, senna) not a hypothetical detoxifier. Oral detox intake has no effect on this. If you truly have bowel blockage you need a cathartic or at it’s worst case, surgery. You don’t mess around with “detox”

            C: Have you ever been present for a colonoscopy or gastroscopy? (I have, in a professional capacity) Food items don’t remain in the intestines unless there is a mechanical issue. These issues require medical intervention not detoxification.

          • Thresa Jenkins

            You are correct.

          • Veggieman

            Kefir helps me. After years of stomach pain, cramps, diverticulitis and finally a perforated colon and two surgeries my internal system would work, but not well. After my doctor suggested I add kefir I haven’t had these issues. I also make sure to limit highly processed foods.

          • VJ

            I totally agree with you Knucklebones
            People eat wrong food wrong amount and wrong time and blame on from their constitution or anything they think of. I am a medic and my weight was YO YO because of my eating habits due to work schedule-see again I am blaming work. When I disciplined myself weight dropped from size 16+ to size8 (uk size). I tell my patient the same thing. They don’t have to eat, it just because it is there. There no such a thing free food- you eat more you pay for it by piling weight on, indigestion and all other problems associated with. Be on holiday or in party. If you have a bloating problem, see what is causing that problem with process of elimination. In my case it was chocolate drink.
            As you said, if one has a problem go to your doctor and make sure you discuu ‘all’ and don’t just come out with the prescription drug.
            truth is unpalatable but LOOK AT YOUR LIFESTYLE and as it is said, seek medical help before it is too late….

          • Alileve

            Knucklebones, you seem to know what you’re talking about. I did some “cleanses” and “elimination diets” reintroducing foods individually. I just did it bcz I thought it would make me healthier – though there really wasn’t anything wrong with me. My weight is on point – I don’t eat too much and I do resistance exercises safe for the 50+ yr old female that I am. I was eating the right amount of calories, but my food choices were very mainstream and likely “unhealthy” junk. Since that attempt to get healthier, I got a severe case of hives that didn’t respond to any of the recommended homeopathic remedies. After 3 months, I finally went to a traditional doctor who put me on 4 zyrtec/day & 2 zantac/day & they cleared right up. He told me I could stop the zantac, but should/could continue the 4 zyrtec/day. I’ve been on it for over 2yrs. I decided to see if i could reduce it slowly, but when I got down to 1/day, the hives came back. I got tested by an allergy doctor who said I was allergic to every food they tested for. (Then sent me on my way bcz they don’t/can’t treat food allergies!?) Everything I’ve read about reversing food allergies is by lay people who claim to have reversed theirs, all by using kefir and only eating fermented foods for 1 – 2 years. Any other suggestions? Thank you!

          • Phaulonius J Knucklebones

            Yours sounds like an issue that is more complex than is able to be thoroughly addressed on this forum.
            It’s strange that you only began to get hives after doing a detox. It’s difficult to say if or how that detox precipitated getting hives…but hives suggests you developed some sort of food allergy. (As I believe you deduced)

            It’s interesting to note that you had some improvement with the Zyrtec and Zantac. The Zantac in particular does have an anti-histamine effect so it was likely that which was inhibiting the hives and explains why they returned when you had weaned off these medications.

            In theory the best thing you can do is restrict your diet to very simple, bland foods (those that are considered least allergy-inducing) and then slowly re-introduce foods singularly so that you can see specifically what triggers the allergic response. (I understand this is a challenging, time-consuming process) I’d suggest you pursue this process with the assistance of your GP and a Nutritionist. ideally your GP would make a referral to an allergist but it sounds like you already had a Consult and it was not very helpful to you.

            As for reversing allergies I’m not at all familiar how to do this. I have not heard any evidence to suggest it is possible. But it would probably not hurt you to try keffir or other fermented foods in an attempt to do so. Perhaps even probiotics would help to re-establish your intestinal flora and have some positive effect.

            I am sorry I cannot provide much better suggestions but your issue seems to require a Specialist.

          • Alileve

            Thank you so much for taking the time to reply. I have a phone conultation scheduled with an Ayurvedic practitioner soon. Hopefully that will give me some specific direction. Thank you, again, for responding. Enjoy your day. 🙂

          • Phaulonius J Knucklebones


            I wish you luck in getting to the bottom of your reactive issue. I’m sorry I couldn’t be more helpful but I wouldn’t claim to have more than a fairly basic knowledge of the complexities of nutrition.

          • Alileve

            So in addition to knowledgeable, you’re humble. : )

            I’m about to try the Ayuredic approach. I have to do a little more reading since my consult so will start in a couple of days. Thanks for your kindness.

          • zenzete

            You seem to have a passing acquaintance with medical terms and what you prescribe is sound if it is ascribed to a healthy person. Consider what you are saying when applied to a person who has a systemic candida overgrowth. Little of your advice applies to this situation. An advanced case that is ignored and never admitted as existing by the insured medical community will eventually advance to every major organ in the body including the brain and spinal column. It then is referred to as fungal meningitis and finally becomes a cause for an emergency because, as you say, it is detectable in the blood. It is amusing to me to hear that the time to act is after the condition becomes an emergency. I learned in the submarine force that the way to prevent devastating emergencies is before they begin or at the latest when first detected. Your method is taught in the Flexner – Fishbein School of Medicine. Even though candida doesn’t exist, according to my doctor, it never causes problems – or so she told me. That was just before I fired her.
            I then read that 20% of hospital patients who have extended stays contract bloodstream infections. Then further that 9% of those are candida. Then further that 27% of the total number infected die.
            Then I find that many cancers are actually fungi or were caused by fungi. Further reading tells me that the two major anaerobic parasites of the body are Candida and Cancer. Coincidence?, the AMA tells us it is.
            That leads me to several conclusions:
            (1) If a person tells me he supports the AMA or the medical establishment of the USA I don’t believe anything that person tells me as fact.
            (2) Any person who calls another a quack because he does not have an AMA membership or a degree from a Flexner – Fishbein Medical School loses all credibility.
            (3) Any person who treats only the symptoms of a problem – as I read on an earlier post using Zyrtec and Zantac should not be in any medical profession.
            I have more but I am sure you get the idea. People who are never sick and enjoy good health are well supported by our present medical system – you only have problems if you dare to get sick. Every single major medical problem I have endured was caused by an MD. A Dermatologist who gave me prednisone for the symptoms of a skin rash and caused me to have both hips replaced, during one of the hip replacements I was given an illegal blood transfusion that resulted in Hepatitis C, down to todays bout with candida with a liver that was exposed to Hepatitis C for twenty years.
            Unless you really know something about medicine and can actually help people who are ailing (and visit this site for assistance) you should at least qualify your statements and tell the people that the only application for your advice is if you are a completely healthy individual.

          • Margot

            Hi, the hives you are getting after stopping Zyrtec are a result of withdrawal. Do a search and you’ll see for yourself. I had the same thing happen to me after using it for only a week to treat my chronic hives. It made them several times worse. I had to go on a special diet to try and treat it (GAPS). It’s helping and I just started drinking kefir to help improve my gut’s microbiome.

            The one thing that helped me before starting GAPS was mixing turmeric powder with a little bit of black pepper and taking about a spoonful twice a day. I now make something called “golden paste” and add it to a cup of kefir and drink that two-three times a day. Turmeric is highly anti-inflammatory but requires either a fat or black pepper to help with absorption.

            I think you should check out the website for GAPS which is a diet designed by a medical doctor out of England. She has an FAQ and has some stuff regarding food allergies. Also, there is medical literature regarding probiotics and reducing allergies, it’s not just lay people.

            It’s just not natural for someone to be allergic to every single food. I think you could really benefit from the GAPS protocol. It takes time, you really do need at least 6 months on it.

            Good luck.

          • Liala Yasmeen

            hi,Alileve, Have you considered, cupping/hijama therapy? Its meant to be really good for so many things.

          • John S

            I thought blood letting went out in the early 16th century.

          • Liala Yasmeen

            Not really, its widely practiced in china all the time, and because it works people still go for it. After having so much digestion problems, getting cupping done myself has really helped my health.

          • Michele Preder

            I found this thread because I was curious about what “Kefir grains” are.

            I am currently reading Dr. Gundry’s Plant Paradox book (I completed the first half of the book that details the background information. I just arrived at the “Yes” and “No” foods list.)
            I am not advertising!!! I am sharing.
            What you are describing sounds like could benefit from the Plant Paradox Plan.
            I pasted a link below. Read the reviews for his book (there are SO many success stories).
            Acid-blocking drugs are just one thing that disrupt your holobiome and contribute to the breaching of your intestinal wall.


          • Dave Bones

            Stop spoiling their fun with facts! They need to use words like cleanse and detoxify, it makes them sound knowledgeable.

          • Thresa Jenkins

            When you detox, you are also flushing out the good bacteria from the intestines as well. Never a good thing.

          • Christina Meadows

            If you “detox” with kefir, you’re not flushing out good bacteria. You’re taking in good bacteria. 😉
            I urge all my patients to learn about the Vagus Nerve; it’s life-changing.

          • Dr. Corbin C Fox III

            What and were do you send your patients to learn about the Vagus Nerve?

          • James spiteri

            Even when you pooh you are wasting good bacteria. That’s why consuming kefir is good. Please refer to 10 Days detox diet by Dr. Mark Hayman and Eat dirt by Dr. axe

          • DAWN CORDES

            Sometimes doing a detox for your intestines/colon whether it be external or through a flush can also be harmful to the body. The body knows how to rid itself of waste all on it’s own. https://lacolon.com/blog/colon-cleansing-for-detoxification-has-no-health-benefits

          • Liz Marmont-Evans

            toxins: alcohol, smoking, sugar are just some, including chemicals put in processed food
            equals liver and kidney strain which needs to ‘de toxify’ oh and POLLUTION
            it’s not rocket science nor a myth.We ARE full of toxins.Also stress creates toxins in the body too wher your body isn’t working as efficiently as it can. you can be going about your days perfectly without knowing the effects of the above and can lead a ‘normal’ life.
            most people’s liver and kidneys do not function as efficiently as they can because of the lifestyles we choose or are thrust forced upon us as societies.

          • Phaulonius J Knucklebones

            Yes, those are considered toxins. But we are not “full” of them…they are constantly being filtered out. But for the majority of people their body’s filters (liver and kidneys) are functioning normally and are not stressed and require NO de-toxifying. Certainly some people need to take less of certain toxins toxin when there is a choice (ie: alcohol) but can you explain to me:

            How do people exhibit “strain” to their kidneys?
            Or in what way is their body NOT working as efficiently as it can?
            If detoxification is not rocket science or MYTH, you should be easily able to explain in lay terms (supported by research) how toxicity is measured and what effect positive detoxification has.
            …similarly when one goes to the hospital and their blood values for liver and kidney function ie: AST, ALT, GGT, GFR are ALL within normal limits what specifically would make you think they are functionng with compromised liver and kidneys?

            There is no empiric evidence (except bloodwork) that could possibly illustrate body toxicity. And when that is the case, if the body, “detoxifying has no appreciable positive effect on failing liver or kidneys, those body functions require medical intervention like dialysis to assist with detoxification of the body….

            With all due respect you may not be a charlatan who’s trying to make a buck off of vulnerable. impressionable people and you may sincerely believe in detoxification but it’s somewhat irresponsible to recommended it to people who are in need of more intensive, medical advice or treatment when in fact, detoxification is not measurably effective for humans.

          • KansasGirl

            Phaulonius – You are absolutely correct on all these points and prior posts about the myth of detoxification. Our bodies are so incredibly adept at handling everything that the only evidence of a “toxic” intestine, kidney, liver, etc., will be evident on labs and imaging studies, and such toxicities would require immediate treatment at a hospital because you will be very sick. “Detoxification” in the popular nutrition market, is centered around emptying the bowels, on the false premise about “rotten sludge” and other inaccurate phrases. I can assure you that just because you induce intestinal motility to empty your bowels, your liver and kidney are not magically benefitted in some way, because that’s not how digestion works in relation to the liver and kidneys. If a person knows basic anatomy, physiology, and pathophysiology, they will not fall for these snake oil schemes.

            I would also add, in response to LmE, that ANY substance can be toxic to the body, given the right conditions and right amount, even oxygen and water. Drink enough water in one sitting, and you may well die through an induced hyponatremia. Instead of spending money on “detox” systems, if people spent money on veggies, fruits, and proteins, they would be a whole lot healthier and have more money left in their pockets.

          • dogbreathdude

            UM…I believe that was a reference to what the Liver and Kidney’s actually do for the human body !! Derf !

      • Nicholas Poku

        There is!! You put toxic in you & you detoxic yourself. There are lots of phyotnutrients & enzymes that bind to radicals & heavy metals in our organs & at cellular levels. If you have been taught that does not exist pls revisit the topic.

        • Stephen Hovey

          Nope.. Its all bull to get your money.. Your liver removes toxins from your blood every day. Thats it.

        • Phaulonius J Knucklebones

          How do you measure cellular toxicity?

          If one needs to treat celullar toxicity, it would be helpful to know what level of toxicity you are suffering to be able to detoxify with some degree of kowing how much detoxifier to use….and to be able to measure how much improvement you have achieved through detoxifying.
          All the talk of detoxifying on this (and most) site cannot speak at all to measuring toxicity or measuring how effective detoxifying is.

          In hospitals liver and kidney function can be measured. And when these lab values indicate compromised liver or kidney function, there are things that can be done to treat this dysfunction, though it is actually very limited to mostly, NOT ingesting specific toxicants and letting the organs rest.

          One specific toxicity: Hyperkalemia is treated by a very complex regime of medications designed and needed to remove excess potassium from the blood stream (it is important to know why hyperkalemia is specifically dangerous to the body and that potassium is not possible to remove through “detox” because of the nature of electrolytes and fluid shifts)

          Detoxification is an overly simplistic theory that cannot be supported by any measurable data.

        • Maliciousboy

          New research is showing that ridding (detoxing) yourself of free radicals is a problem for your health, not a cure. Those taking vitamins to get rid of free radicals got cancer at higher rates than those who did not. The science is not there to show any positive health effect from taking heavy doses of vitamins to eradicate free radicals. In fact if you really shouldn’t take supplements at all. You can get all the vitamins you need if you eat the right foods.

          Read this for more: http://www.bbc.com/future/story/20161208-why-vitamin-supplements-could-kill-you

          • zenzete

            Maliciousboy – So you are telling me I should listen to you and not take vitamins — You are telling me that Linus Pauling was a quack. I think I believe Linus Pauling , he has two more Noble prizes than you do, just better credentials.

          • Phaulonius J Knucklebones

            I’m trying to reply to your recent comment but cannot find it so I’ll reply here.

            (you said edited for brevity) “You seem to have a passing acquaintance with medical terms and what you prescribe is sound if it is ascribed to a healthy person. Consider….a person who has a systemic candida overgrowth. Little of your advice applies to this situation.”

            You are absolutely correct in much of your comment. I agree with EVERYTHING you say up until your numbered comments. However:

            1: I was not prescribing anything to anyone. I am not a doctor. (I was making a somewhat informed comment and I happen to be licenced health care practitioner whose specialty is not Nutrition though nutrition occasionally overlaps with my generalized Emergency Medical knowledge. Admittedly, conventional Medical training is under-educated about Nutritional issues but that does not invalidate knowledge and communication of certain overlapping issues
            B: there are countless medical diagnoses and conditions that I could have no way of hypothetically and speculatively addressing in my comment. There is no way to disavow myself of every now medical condition. I believe that should go without saying.
            C: anyone with Candida is presumably an adult and should do their own research and not presume that my comment was intended to directly address their condition.

            While I admire your critical thinking (which I think is a valuable trait) I have to ask that if you don’t accept anything that the AMA declare (it’s importatt to understand that Medicine like all scineces is cumulative and anythihg they state as “fact” is wihtin the Medical community understood to be “factual” as understood to the present moment.

            When I mention emergency treatment, that is my personal bias based on the fact that THAT is where I personally see Medically conditions. I’m not recommending waiting until a person is emergently ill to seek treatment. Even better is healthy preventative measures (you are correct in that statement)

            again you are correct in the efficacy of treating a symptom vs treating the underlying condition. The specific suggestion I made with that regard was based on the fatc that without actually assessing and “diagnosing” the woman who asked me a question, in person, I cannot possibly diagnose and suggest treating the underlying condition which I have idea what it is. I was making an oblique comment as an example not as a recommended course of action…So yet again you are correct but seem to have misinterpreted my comment.

            Anyway…overall I agree wit you.

          • Phaulonius J Knucklebones

            ” I have to ask that if you don’t accept anything that the AMA declare” (I did not complete this question…

            I meant ask if you don’t trust the AMA, who do you choose to trust?
            (I understand and accept as perfectly valid the critical thinking, and the necessary questioning of Pharmacological findings (unfortunately it’s true there is a great deal of corporate influence exerted onto the Medical community by corporate interests) It does not mean the system as a whole cannot be trusted to be getting something right.
            It’s like that when Tom Brady (arguably) was involved in deflating footballs, that NO football teams can be trusted not to be doing so.

          • Brek Brek

            He got the npp for his science work before he started his megavitamin crusade, of which non of his therories have been accepted by the scientific community as there is no evidence that the claims he made were vaild.
            A broad spectrum of non processed/refined foods are all we need, a healthy diet supplies ALL the nutrients we require.

      • IDontThinkSo

        You stoopid. If there’s no such thing, why is there a word for it? A word you just used…

        • Stephen Hovey

          There are no such things as unicorns, but there is a word for them.

      • James spiteri

        Says who?

        • Stephen Hovey

          the entire medical community

    • TTeddy

      Include other good foods to help with this. Reassess your fibre intake.

      I suggest any or a couple of the following.

      Carom Seeds
      Carom seeds are a magical ingredient that can ease your acidity and pukish impulse without much thought. Simply punch up some hot water by adding these seeds. Drink the liquid down while it is still a little hot and you will experience less bloating within minutes.

      Cumin Seeds
      The master spice of any Indian or Mexican kitchen, cumin seeds are well known for their digestion aiding properties. These seeds can also be boiled with some water and then strained off to make a liquid for aiding digestion. Boost digestion levels quickly whenever you feel too loaded after a heavy dinner or lunch. Cumin seeds can also be slightly roasted and munched upon. Wash this down with water at normal temperature if you cannot manage to boil the same.

      Ginger root has long been praised for its anti-inflammatory properties! This wonder root can even be chewed upon raw but we advise you to slice this up and boil it in water to create a fluid that aids quicker digestion. Whenever you need to boost digestion, you can paste up some ginger and mix it with salted water too.

      Apple Cider Vinegar
      Who knew that the humble vinegar would find place in a list of stuffs, that can boost digestion? Apple cider vinegar can be added to plain water—in doses of a tablespoon or two. This helps in flushing away toxins from the body besides speeding up the digestion process after an elaborate meal.

      Cloves have magical digestive properties that can be best realized when you drink a glass of water that has been boiled with some cloves. This lends a fresh feel once you have had a full plate. It is used to boost digestion if you feel too tight stomached.

      This one veggie can be used to boost digestion levels in people of any age. From the smallest kid to the oldest man in the family, you can give anybody a glass of water wherein cucumber slices have been boiled, when they are fighting acidity.

      Chia Seeds
      These seeds help boost digestion because they are vested with anti-acidic properties. These seeds also aid in saying goodbye to constipation and come laced with fibres that help fight issues of the bowel.

      Simply soaking a stick of cinnamon in water makes the liquid worth having as a means to boost digestion. Cinnamon also comes with anti-viral properties and helps in speeding up metabolism. Wow, that is a lot of action for sticks so tiny!

    • Yolanda Garcia

      Sounds like you need to allow more time to allow the bacteria balance out the yeast in the milk. You should allow 24 hours of fermentation. If you are already doing this, then take your finished milk kefir and refrigerate it, allowing about half a day or the next. Yeast cannot handle the cold, its growth gets suspended and this allows the healthy bacteria to grow. Try this and see how it works. Good Luck.

    • Bhatrisyea Raeedah

      “…kefir’s abundance of beneficial yeast and bacteria provide lactase, an enzyme which consumes most of the lactose left after the culturing process…” quote

      What causing you to bloat, is from the yeast and bacteria which provide lactase that creates a good condition for ‘friendly bacteria’ to grow- for good digestion. Side effects? not too sure maybe because it contains traces of animal milk… or is it because your body is beginning to show that it is trying to adjust to the new diet? If it persists, and you feel like crap- Please consult your nutritionist ! perhaps you are lactose intolerant? it is all written above in the article 🙂

    • James spiteri

      Always start consuming kefir with a small amount like table spoon and increase your intake to 1 cup twice or three times a day. I consume 500ml a day and am not putting weight. Be sure to consume 1 to 2 liters of filtered water every day. Eat lots of vegetable and avoid sugar of all kinds. Don’t forget to at least walk half an hour every day. Finally take life easy and stop worrying. Stress can makes you put on weight.

    • Margot

      Hi, it’s not “detox” symptoms, I think you mean “die-off”. Sometimes when you introduce too many probiotics at once they can cause the bad bacteria to die too quickly and release toxins in the process. So that overloads your bodies detoxification pathways. Introduce fermented foods very slowly. Depending how bad your gut is, you may have to start with just a few drops, or a spoonfuls and work up from there. Best of luck!

    • MOE JOE

      If you are having gastric stomach pain DO NOT use flax seed!!! The small seeds will lodge in your intestinal crevice and cause gastritis which is very likely what you are experiencing with your pain and bloating.

  • rosangela

    pode ser feito com leite semidesnatado

    • Glenn Sefton


  • Andree Tait

    Hi, I am in search of MILK KEFIR GRAINS, it is for a cancer patient and was reccomended by the Doctor,
    I have the water kefir grains, but he stipulated MILK Kefir.
    I am IN Johannesburg/Centurion area

    • Clare Kuepfer

      Dear Andree,
      If you need only the milk kefir grains you should check out kefirlady.com. She was very helpful with us. May I also put in that you should use raw milk. (we ourselves sell raw goat milk, and Raw goat milk kefir, and a limited supply of camel milk, but if you can make it yourself it will definately be cheaper for you. Our site is camelmilkassociation.com) As far as Raw milk verses pasturized we found that, You can buy what is labeled as Kefir in health food stores, but that is not real Kefir. You can also buy Kefir starter cultures to inoculate your milk, but that is not real Kefir either. These products are expensive, do not last, and have only 7 probiotic bacteria in them. True Kefir has 36 documented probiotic bacteria for digestive tract health. Let me know if I can help even if you are not interested in purchasing from us. My dad passed away from cancer almost ten years ago now. May God bless you all and restore your friend to health. (note; our Raw Goat milk kefir is due to be available online in the next couple of days)

    • Joyce

      Here is the International Kefir Grains list. There may be someone near you. PLEASE besure to use Organic Milk so there is NO hormones or anti-biotics to feed the cancer cells, they love it.

      • BludBaut

        They also love sugar… which reminds me. I see no one talking about Stevia. After a good amount of research with the clear majority saying KAL was the best tasting Stevia, I bought it and absolutely love it. I put it in Kefir and am very happy with just Stevia and kefir. It doesn’t have an after taste. I have noticed this though–the longer the product you’ve sweetened with Stevia sits, the sweeter it gets. This seems to be especially true with something thick like Kefir. So, if I’m not in a hurry, I’ll add Stevia before I’m ready to drink.

    • Melissa B.

      I get my water kefir grains from “Cultures for Health” (at http://www.culturesforhealth.com?a_aid=4e7f92953556f) They have grains of all kind, including milk kefir grains, yogurt starters, sourdough starters, etc. There are great health benefits to all of these things! Good luck!

      • aliaa

        please i need kefir grains for my search, how can i get it????


        • James spiteri

          From e-bay

    • I just got mines on Etsy .com search for milk grains. I paid 20$ and it took about 3 days for delivery. They were sent in a small plastic container. When I opened them they smelled bad but I rinsed them with cold water and that got rid of the smell. When I received them they were so small but now two and a half months after they had tripled in size and are more plump. My whole family has learned to love kefir. I usually make them a smoothie every morning (kefir, bananas and strawberries, or blueberries or my favorite peaches a tiny bit of sugar) I have a new batch of kefir every single day. We actually don’t even buy yogurts any more since kefir is much healthier. Just remember to use a plastic strainer since metal strainers aren’t good for them so I hear and I always use glass jars. I hope this helps. If you have any questions contact me at [email protected]

      • P.S. I always use organic whole milk with my grains.

        • amy

          Yadira – what size is the glass jar? I have a yogurt loving child and I’d like to move him and his brother to Kefir smoothies for breakfast each morning. Thanks for the advice!

          • Funny thing is that I don’t even know what size the jar is. Here I am showing a picture of the jar with a ruler by the side so that you can see how tall it is. I use 4 cups of milk in this jar. I do not fill it with more than 4 cups because once the curds start separating from the whey it expands and then the whey starts overflowing from the jar. I did not know this so I would always be asking “Who keeps spilling my kefir?” lol. Here are another few things that I have learned.

            There have been times when I have ran out of organic whole milk and instead I use regular whole milk. I just switch back to organic milk as soon as I can at the beggining of a new batch.

            Also it is much less sour if you use it one day after.

            There have been days when I have gotten really lazy and actually not change it for 3 days. This made the grains in the top dry and a little bit brownish. I did not like that so now I make sure to change the milk every one to two days and now my grains are looking normal again.

            I wanted to know if the kefir was really lactose free so I conducted a small experiment. My aunt who is lactose intolerant volunteered to drink a smoothie because she really wanted to start using kefir. Now if she even drinks a tiny bit of regular milk her stomach will be very upset. So she drank it and she loved it and to our surprise her stomach did not react at all. She used it for a while but unfortunatly she stopped because she has an ulcer. The sourness of the kefir was making her ulcer hurt more at least that is what we think. That is why I say if you drink it after one day it will be less sour than if you drink it after two days.

            I also have a new favorite smothie. Here is my recipe.

            kefir (4 cups exactly what my jar holds)

            2 bananas

            mixed frozen fruit (i bought a mixed frozen fruit bag at walmart witch has strawberries,

            mango, peaches and pineapple)

            Blend and drink as it is or sweeten with honey or with what ever you prefer.

            Delicious!!! I could drink this all day long.

            Sometimes there is some left over and so I leave it in the blender put it in the fridge and then the next day I blend it for 1 second and it is still good to drink. There might be separation the whey always goes to the bottom but once you mix it all good again. I do not know but something about the kefir does not let the banana turn brown like when you do a banana smoothie with regular milk. Of course if you leave it longer than a day you will start to see it go bad.

            Remember you have to experiment untill you get it to where you like it actually untill your kids like it lol. I add two bananas so that it will get rid of some of the sour taste.

            I hope this helped. Best wishes…


      • This batch has fermented for 24 hours. I know that it is done by all of the air pockets that have formed against the jar. When I started making it I would get to impatient and I would try to strain it earlier than the 24 hours and it would just be to runny. Once I let it sit for 48 hours and it was still good but the flavor was much stronger and my kids did not like it. You must also realize that if the whole jar has air pockets that means that the grains are running out of food since they are eating the lactose in the milk. If you leave them there and not change the milk they could starve and die. I do not know how long they will survive so don’t risk it. I treat mines like baby’s so I feed them every day. Know that there are exceptions for when you want to travel but I have not tried it yet.

        • 1) Has fermented for 24 hours. Here you can see the air bubbles that have formed that is how I know it is ready.

          2) Kefir is ready. The grains have been removed and placed back in the jar to start a new batch.

          3) My breakfast a banana and blueberry smoothie. (Yum)

          4) The only things I need. Glass/plastic container no metals.I like the glass jar because it is easy to see through and see the air bubbles this way I know it is done. Cover the jar with a coffee filter and a rubber band or towel something that wont let nothing in but will still let it breath. Plastic strainer and spoon spatula nothing metal ( I recommend buying a plastic strainer with smaller holes this way the small grains wont get through. I need to replace mine)

          • I noticed that during the winter when the weather is colder the bubbles don’t show that much as in this image. It is also a bit more runny at the top of the jar but thicker at the bottom. Still is is ready to use.

  • Joy

    I have been making kefir for almost a year now from raw milk I buy from a local dairy and love it. I make a smoothie of a cup of kefir, handful of frozen berries, frozen plums and a banana. That is my breakfast every morning. Sometimes changing up the frozen fruit that I have froze myself from fruit that i have bought or grown. My grains will not grow and I wonder why. Has anyone else had that problem?

    • Helen O Pope

      The grains will not grow if you put them in the refridgerator. It is too cold. At least this is the experience I have had. They should be left in a warmer place. I generally just leave the milk with grains in it on the counter. The grains as they begin are very small. You may be eating them before you recognize that they are there.

      • Great video. Thanks. Quick qstieuon..would it be ok to use solely Muskavado sugar instead of the white sugar and palm sugar?

        • BludBaut

          I love Stevia, but you can use any sugar you want.

    • Joyce

      Joy, if you have the Caucasus grains (large cottage cheese like grains) they should double in 20 days if they are still viable and you make kefir every day. It is not necessary to make it every day, but this will give you a guide.
      If you have the Tibet grains (they are so small they are contined in a small bag) they take quite a long time to multiply, but after 6 months to a year, if you make kefir often, they should multiply enough to divide them.
      You should never use medal spoon or strainer, this will kill the grains. Do not put your lid on the jar tight while culturing, If you are doing everything right they should multiply.
      Type in, What is Kefir, this is a very informative site.
      Here is the International Kefir Grains list incase you need more – http://www.torontoadvisors.com/

    • Karen

      Do you put them near spices? For some reason, kefir grains do not do well in the spice cupboard or near spices that give off a gas.

  • Lilyanna

    I need help! What do I do if a first kefir batch was left on the kitchen counter for ten days (not ten hours!) ????? I would greatly appreciate some advice! Thank you!

    • areyouforreal

      seriously?? you need help to know wht to do? PITCH IT. THROW IT AWAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • gerry

      Just rinse the kefir grains thoroughly with cold water through a plastic sieve until the water runs clear. Let the grains drip out most of the water and then reuse it to make new kefir by pouring new milk on it. I did it and it worked fine.

      • Joyce

        When you rise the grains make sure the water is not chlorinated, it will kill the grains. The site “What is Kefir” gives you important kefir precautions. Use bottled water if you are in question.
        For any that did not know, kefir helps diabetics because it lowers the candida overload that is causing the diabetes.
        And remember sugars, except Stevia, feeds candida.

        • Scout

          Candia causing diabetes???

          Ummm. I have been a Type 1 (insulin dependent) diabetic for over 25 years. And all this time I thought a faulty pancreas caused my diabetes. Please be careful when you make sweeping statements like this.

          • Nina

            Its the insulin cells that has damaged your pancreas
            I never heard of candida overload an i am diabetic type 1 for 30years

        • Rachelle Deschenes

          OK Type 1’s maybe she meant Type 2’s who’s numbers are increasing at an alarmingly rapid rate and it is affecting younger and younger people, obviously it is caused by something and i’m not sold on lifestyle and overeating carbohydrate foods, i’m just saying maybe it’s something more. I am type 2 and will give it a try. Thanks Joyce

          • ian taylor

            Have you seen the video – “Simply Raw – Reversing diabetes in 30 days” takes 8 people with Diabetes and puts them cold turkey on a Raw Vegan diet for 30 days…. very interesting results.

  • Madeleine

    This is my first visit to this site. The comments are very helpful. I started keifer and found it constipating so I stopped. Then restarted and it occurred again. Then again. I resorted to cooking with it. The pancakes are like non other! Salad dressings are superb. I am going to take your suggestions on the flaxseeds. Any other helpful hints?

  • barbara

    Kefir needs to be taken first thing in the morning after a 12 hour period of culturing, it then has a sweetish flavour and acts as a mild laxative. If taken after 24 hours it becomes quite sour and may cause constipation. If one googles ‘What is Kefir’ and ‘What is Kefir good for’, one has all the information one can get on Kefir. I’ve been on Kefir for just three weeks and my IBS has vanished, my fatty enlarged liver has improved as I can eat anything without getting a bloated distended feeling and I have stopped medication for my liver problem. Besides I feel more energetic, sleep well and enjoy a general feeling of good health.

  • Ginger

    I just received packets of kefir starter from the Body Ecology Company by Donna Gates. It lists candida keyfr as an ingredient and I read online that this kind of yeast can cause disease. I am working on a systemic yeast infection. Has anyone heard of this?

    • Joyce

      Ginger you would be better to use the real grains so the helpful bacteria stays in the gut.
      Here is a web site that offers grains from all over the world. Kefir is so easy to make and the grains last a life time if you take time to learn how and what to do, I highly recommend the site “What is Kefir”.
      Do not over process the kefir or it will be constipating to you, no more that 20 to 24 hours, just as it starts to set. Real kefir takes care of a candida overload, besure to take it on an empty stomach, first thing in the morning and last thing at night or a half hour before meals.The kefir site gives you great information.


    • The ones that are dried will only give a certain amount batches. The fresh grains can live for ever with the proper care.

  • Leanne Heckman

    You can also make kefir with water.

  • mona friolet

    Hi everyone..i have crohn’s disease for the past 4 years ..have tried many different natural remedies that doesn’t seems to work .Someone has advise me to try using Kefir to reduce the pain and the diarrhea.will it help me…in need for help as i don’t want to take the doctor’s strong medications .

    • Susan Yanish

      To Mona Friolet,
      I am reading “The Maker’s Diet” by Jordan Rubin. He was dying of Crohn’s Disease, but since 1996 he is in amazing recovery. The doctor’s who left him to die are amazed. I recommend his book to you. He is in Florida, is a practicing doctor, and is really helping so many people. All the best to you.

    • Donna Wickett

      Hi Mona:

      I have a few customers with crohns and ibs who are using our Vital and Confianza from It Works and they seem to be helping them . When you have crohns, colitis or ibs, you are not able to absorb the good nutrients that you need daily and flare ups are usually caused by stress. If you are wanting more info please email me.

      • Shabnam

        Hi there, I have ulcerative colitis disease for nearly 5 years and I have tried to use SCD diet which is about deleting all the types of complex carbohydrate such as rice, pasta, bread and so on and use probiotics products, I take strong medications but it doesn’t help so much. Do you think Kefir products could be helpful or ?

        • BludBaut

          I think it’s worth a try. Really good quality inner leaf gel aloe vera should help. Manuka should help. Search these with the appropriate keywords and you should get good information if you stay away from medical sites.

          • VJ

            Aloe Vera
            you know folks. In india in small village going to the doctor was an occasion. But in our back garden where all our bathroom water used to be flown, we had banana ns aloe vera plants growing. If we had tummy ‘upset’ dad used to take a leaf roast it on coal take the juice out for us, Hey pesto and it worked.

        • Ruby StMyers

          I also had colitis, I started taking one ( those medicine cups you get in kids meds.) full of aloe juice morning and night along with acidolphilus capsules. after about 6 months I was eating just about anything I wanted. I now take aloe, lemon juice, with cranberry Juice everyday and at night take a 30 million dose of probiotic. I have not had a recurrence of colitis is 30 years.

    • Vivian Cover

      Hi Mona, I’m sorry to hear of you suffering with crohn’s. Many have received lasting relief from a special alkaline water. See testimonials at: http://www.DownloadMyEbook.com/vcover. Contact me for help.

    • Amy Hisaoka

      I have Crohn’s and the thing that helped me is I started drinking raw goat milk. Kefir will help even faster. I make my own raw goat milk kefir. It helped me so much, I got my own milk goats! I’m now off of ALL medication!

      • BludBaut

        That is great to hear. How long was the time from starting kefir to stopping medication?

    • BludBaut

      If you still have problems, give high quality aloe vera and try and also Manuka Honey, which is very expensive. The quality ranges from excellent to worthless on aloe, so critically read reviews. George’s is highly rated but the remove the longer chain polysaccharides and they all (some 200 constituents) are considered to have benefit. For that reason, even though George’s is very highly rated, I wouldn’t recommend it as my number one choice but that’s not to condemn it. My personal favorite is Verapol, which I like so much I sell it.

  • doc zhivago

    hi gentelman;
    thanks , ineed only ‘ kombucha mushroom’
    iam liveing in tehran / iran
    pleaze tell me what can i do
    thanks again good luck doc

  • David

    Im just getting into Kombucha Tea, which is also a probiotic, what are ppls thoughts on Kefir vs Kombucha?

  • Neri

    Hi kefir carers, I leave my kefir for up to a week or more and get a great cottage type cheese which acan be flavoured with anything olive salt is especially good. I have used all sorts of milk even UTH when I ran out. My daughter has even frozen the grains when away and the sprang back into action. It all worked!
    I am now thinking of trying to make a coconut kefir mix as I have just tried coconut yoghur t from the store at a riduculous price.
    Also tried camambert but mixed the rind fron a real camembert into the hanging muslin, in progress at present. Not sure what that will make, after belatedly reading the right process.
    I recently taught and gave work collegues kefir to use. I call it ‘ the creature’ and care for it as any living thing, and have fun responding to the question ‘ Where did you get this” dip,cheese,or what ever I have made! Enjoy Neri

  • Mel

    I have been drinking Kefir for about two and half weeks now. I am feeling really bloated and constipated and I have put on a couple of kilos! Is this normal?? I have heard that drinking kefir helps people that suffer from constipation? Am I doing something wrong? I want to keep drinking it as I know that it is good for you, but if I keep feeling like this I might have to stop!!

    • Linda

      Along with the kefir milk, I add 3 T. of ground flax seeds to my oatmeal and I am never constipated. Might be worth a try plus ground flax seeds are very healthful. I have been taking both daily for over 5 years.

      • Brian A. Morin

        That’s a good suggestion Linda. I would start slow Mel, this will give your system time to catch up. – bri <3

      • marina greeff

        Linda I want to buy kefir for a new diet but I don’t have any idee what it looks like or what to look for where in the croceries store can you help me please?

        • Tersia Hibbard

          Hi Marina,
          Are you in South Africa? If yes, there are people who can give you the kefir ‘grains’. Have a look at some of the websites, and YouTube videos. That will give you a good idea of how the process works.
          I found some ‘grains’ from an elderly couple in Pretoria some years ago, but I have unfortunately not had the opportunity to make kefir for almost four years. My ‘grains’ have been frozen, so I don’t think they will be worth much now. Life has been very busy recently.
          I will start the kefir process early in 2012 again, so can let you know if I have success tracking down someone with a fresh supply of kefir grains.
          Best wishes,

          • Andree Tait

            Hi Tersia
            If your Kefir came to life, i am desperately looking for some MILK KEFIR grains for a cancer patient.

        • marietjie

          Hi Marina – where in South Africa are you? I have kefir grains – you need a tiny bit to start with as they grow – well RAPIDLY!!

          • Shelagh

            Hi Marietjie I saw your kind offer and would love to buy some kefir grains from you. I live in Sandton, Gauteng and have tried a few places but they only sell the ready made kefir.
            Best regards

          • Andree Tait

            Hi Marietjie
            I am in Johannesburg/Centurion.
            I need MILK KEFIR grains desperately for my brother-in-law.
            He has oesophagus cancer and Dr recommended Milk Kefir
            If you got some i will be very grateful

    • Brian A. Morin

      Kefir is good for you yes, but if you have been going along in life, with little frenziedly flora in your gut all these years, what happens is, the kefir wants to replace the missing flora, and at the same time it has a cleansing effect. If you slow down your consumption a bit, till your system can catch up, you will probably have some major cleansing (elimination of toxins in the form of waste material).

      You might also want to drink as much fresh clean water, per day, as you can.

      good luck
      – bri <3

    • Sue

      Hi Mel,

      I have been drinking 250ml of Kefir every morning (1st thing) for about 2 weeks now and I am feeling the same effects you are – bloated and constipated and i have also gained weight. What did you do?

      • Gloria

        I’ve been using kefir for a year now and am so pleased. A friend gave me a starter. Before using it, I have been hospitalized for abdominal blockages and divericulitis. This is the first year in four I have not had a major abdominal issue. I have IBS and have in the past had a lot of trouble with bloating and constipation. Since I started the kefir, bloating and constipation have become less of a problem for me. I don’t drink it by itself. I use it instead of milk with cereal. I also use it in recipes instead of buttermilk to make pancakes and muffins. One advantage in making pancakes or muffins is my husband gets some kefir without knowing it! : )

      • lisa

        Hi Mel.
        I have the same problem sometimes. But I drink two cups water right away it work very well after that. Some times I found the sour level in kefir that may cost conspitation. I had stomach bloating too, I just take kefir any way, Somehow it ‘s gone after few weeks.

    • Jeanne

      I was like that at first,too. It took about a month and now I am very regular. I guess my body got used to it . Make sure you drink alot of water as your main fluid intake.

      • Jeanne

        oops…met to respond to Sue…

  • Virginia Chase

    I’ve just begun drinking kefir, and i enjoy it very much. I bought the blueberry flavor and it’s great. Is there any danger in gaining weight from it if consumed even moderately? And does it still have the value if buying from the grocery store? Thanks for your comment, Virginia

    • Brian A. Morin

      If you are using a commercial kefir, you would have to look at the nutritional values to be able to determine how pure your kefir is. If there is added sugar, flavouring, and who knows what, this will have to be taken into consideration. Otherwise you can easily get plain kefir, and add blueberry jelly or jam, to flavour it. Just choose a good, healthy jam. I would use natural juice sweetened jam.

      good luck and have fun
      – bri <3

  • Adriana

    Hola… quiero saber si el Kefir y los bacilos búlgaros son lo mismo o cual es la diferencia, también en Bogotà donde los puedo conseguir.

    • Brian A. Morin

      Kefir Bulgarous is the kefir mushroom, yes! – bri <3

      ¡El kéfir Bulgarous es la seta del kéfir, sí! – bri <3

  • Martinigirl

    Have you tested for Candida/Yeast infection? Your symptoms sound like that may be a possibility.
    If that is the case and you jump on it now you will for certain start to feel better and i’ve been assured Kefir will help. That is why I am on this site trying to research the product.

  • Lydia

    Hello, I am 69 years old , just start to use Kefir, I do in the morning, and in the afternoon my body is very congested (diarrhoea) I would like to know it is normal ,because I suffer about Diversticulit for long time,
    waiting for you answer,

    • kenny

      Lydia, Hi I to have suffered from Diverticulitis, but for the last 18 years i have been free from that disease, for me the answer was live enzyme,s mainly from raw juice,and kefir, and enzyme supplements, like systemic enzymes have been a blessing for me, it may take up to 90 days but you will feel like a new person, full of energy,and life. God Bless.

      • Kelz

        Kenny, what do you mean by “raw juices”? Just curious. I am trying a new diet & all this is new to me?

  • Lydia

    I am 69 years old , just I have start with Kefir , I take one glass with honey in the morning, and in the afternoon I feel my body very congested ( diarrhoea), I would like to know it is normal . I Start with Kefir because I am suffer of Diberticulate for long time,.
    I will appreciate so much you answer,
    Thanks, Lydia