I wasn’t familiar with Kefir until I came across a tweet about it recently that listed a long thread about its benefits. I fact-checked its claims, and I was stunned to find that it was all true. If you’re looking for a little something to boost your health, check out the benefits that this drink can give you:
1. Kefir Balances Gut pH
If you have acid reflux, or maybe you’re looking to balance out your gut, Kefir is loaded with probiotics that are known to help these problems. Acid reflux is mostly treated with medication, so this is a natural alternative if you would like to quit taking antacids all of the time.
2. It Prevents Stomach Ulcers
Kefir contains what is called “good bacteria,” which inhibits H.pylori. This is known to help heal stomach ulcers. A study in Sweden had a large group of people drink Kefir three times a day, and found that they were far less likely to get stomach ulcers than those who didn’t drink it regularly. This drink is also highly beneficial for those with Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis.
3. It’s High in Vitamins and Minerals
There is an abundance of vitamins and minerals packed into Kefir. Just a few of the nutrients it contains are vitamin D, B12, B2, magnesium, phosphorus, calcium, and protein. It can be challenging to get all of the essential vitamins we need, so this is a wonderful source.
4. It Helps with Sleeping Disorders
The key to sweet sleep is serotonin. Stress, sugar, or environmental factors can wipe out the substances that produce serotonin. Kefir is high in tryptophan and live bacteria, which aid in producing serotonin. Drinking kefir regularly will help you sleep better.
Kefir is high in tryptophan and live bacteria, which aid in producing serotonin.
5. It Relieves Menstrual Cramps
Since Kefir has properties that aid in gut health and detoxifying the body, it also aids in preventing menstrual cramps. The probiotics in it help move healthy bacteria into the gut. The intestinal microflora Kefir produces can regulate your hormones to keep a steady flow.
6. It’s a Great Source of B12.
B12 is a vitamin that plays a major role in how much energy you have. My B12 levels are always naturally low, which require me to do vitamin injections twice a month. So I was excited to learn that Kefir is packed with B12, as my body can always use more of it. Even if you’re in the normal range of B12, it won’t hurt to boost your levels with Kefir.
7. It Contains Biotin
Biotin is a water-soluble B vitamin that plays a vital role in assisting enzymes in breaking down fats, carbohydrates, and proteins in food. It’s a nutrient known to promote hair and nail growth. Kefir has biotin in it, so rather than taking a concentrated biotin vitamin, you could drink Kefir every day and get a range of benefits.
8. It Improves Digestion
One of the reasons Kefir is so beneficial for those with auto-immune diseases such as Crohn's or Colitis is because of all the probiotics that are in it. Probiotics also help with digestion because it balances the gut.
9. It Boosts Mental Attitude
Similar to aiding in sleep, serotonin plays a big factor in your mood. The amino acid tryptophan, which is in Kefir, raises serotonin levels in the brain. This can reduce anxious feelings and boost your attitude. Gut health is also connected to your mood, so the probiotics in Kefir are also helping your mental health!
10. It Helps Stop Food Cravings
Because Kefir is rich in live bacteria, it can help get rid of those annoying food cravings. It contains extra microbes which are great for weight loss and combating unwanted cravings.
Kefir contains biotin which helps break down your food and promotes healthy hair and nails.
11. It Clears Up Yeast Infections
As we learned before, Kefir is packed with all different nutrients that promote a healthy gut. It can also be used to help clear yeast infections since it balances your internal system.
12. It’s Protective against the Effects of Radiation
Radiation therapy (often by x-rays) can cause gastrointestinal damage. Studies have shown that Kefir protects colonic crypt cells against radiation-induced apoptosis, otherwise known as gastrointestinal damage.
13. It’s Naturally Antibacterial
Kefir has potent antibacterial properties, including the probiotic Lactobacillus kefiri, which can inhibit the growth of many types of harmful bacteria. It also contains the carbohydrate Keferian, which has antibacterial properties too.
14. It’s Been Used for Cancer Treatment
This one blew my mind. A review of Kefir by Oncology Nurse Advisor states, “Probiotics, in particular lactic acid bacteria (LAB), are thought to stimulate the immune system, and data from several studies have suggested that kefir may positively affect apoptosis, proliferation, and the anti-oxidative process in cancer.” Its effects have been studied in leukemia, breast, and colorectal cancer patients. The review continues with a more scientific explanation of it all.
When I first started researching Kefir, I never expected it to have such a variety of health benefits. The healthy nutrients and probiotics do wonders for the human body. It’s exciting to think that we don’t always need medication to boost our health. Doctors are often quick to prescribe us something to mask the symptoms of our problems, but we can take it upon ourselves to add in other, whole food remedies that could promote a better quality of life overall.
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