You may have heard of kefir in the natural health world and wondered what it was. Kefir in an unique cultured dairy product that is high in nutrients and probiotics. In fact, it is one of the most probiotic-rich foods on the planet, which makes it incredibly beneficial for digestion and gut health. I have recently added kefir into my daily diet and after doing research on it, I wanted to share some of the amazing benefits it can do for your health.
1. Builds Bone Strength
Osteoporosis (a deteriorating bone disease) is a big concern today for people who are aging and for those who do not get enough calcium in their systems. Kefir contains high levels of calcium from the milk, which is needed for bone health. Even more importantly, it has bioactive compounds that help absorb calcium into the body and stop bone degeneration.
Kefir also contains the important nutrients for improving bone density, including phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, vitamin D and vitamin K2, and the probiotics in the kefir improve nutrient absorption.
2. Supports Digestion and Combats IBS
Keeping a balance of bacteria in the gut can be difficult, especially with all the processed foods and chemicals in our food today. Drinking kefir loaded with probiotics will help restore that balance and fight against gastrointestinal diseases like irritable bowel syndrome, Crohn’s and ulcers.
3. Well Tolerated by People Who Are Lactose Intolerant
Regular dairy foods contain a natural sugar called lactose. When people are unable to break down and digest lactose properly, they have a condition called lactose intolerance.
The lactic acid bacteria in fermented dairy foods (like kefir) turn the lactose into lactic acid, so these foods are much lower in lactose than milk. They also contain enzymes that can help break down the lactose even further. This is why kefir is well tolerated by people with lactose intolerance.
Also, it is good to point out that many kefir products are 99% lactose free or you can make kefir 100% lactose free by using coconut water, fruit juice or another non-dairy liquid.
4. Improves Allergies
Various forms of allergies and asthma are all linked to inflammatory issues on the body. Studies with mice have shown that kefir reduced inflammatory cells disrupting the lungs and air passages as well as mucus buildup.
Also, the live microorganisms present in kefir help promote the immune system to naturally suppress allergic reactions and aid in changing the body’s response to the systemic outbreak points for allergies. Scientists believe that these allergic reactions are caused by a lack of good bacteria in the gut.
5. May Fight Against Cancer
Cancer is one of the world’s leading causes of death. It occurs when there is an uncontrolled growth of abnormal cells in the body. Kefir can play a huge part in helping the body fight against this deadly disease.
The probiotics in fermented dairy products are believed to inhibit tumor growth by reducing formation of carcinogenic compounds (agents that are directly involved in causing cancer), as well as by stimulating the immune system. Because of this, kefir can be an effective tool against the spread of the multiplying and dangerous cancerous cells. In certain studies, the compounds found in the probiotic drink have actually shown to make the cancer cells in the stomach self-destruct.