Posted on 2013-12-06 11:01:37

How I Got Started With Kefir

milk kefir

Let me tell you my kefir story.

I was in Mumbai for a week and came back to Singapore fine. But all the travelling and exposure got me thinking about the importance of good probiotics. So I went to Paragon Vitakids looking for one and found one with 40 billion live organisms in each capsule.

40 billion probiotic

The Vitakids team recommended I tried Milk Kefir too. They sold the starter culture, the dried powdered form. Each sachet could be used to ferment a liter of Kefir.

I made my first batch with 1 liter of milk.

The first night after the completion of the fermentation, I had some. About a quarter cup's worth with some crushed almonds. The second night I had slightly more almonds and less kefir. It wasn't so bad. I've always liked yoghurt. And I couldn't tell the difference between kefir and yoghurt.

The third night I drank an entire glass and the morning after was horrid! It was a Saturday.

On a Saturday I'm up and about by 8am. That day I was sluggish. I just mostly stayed in bed. By the time I had lunch, it was 5pm. And it was only during lunch that I noticed my stomach felt like someone gave it a few punches. My insides felt like pulp and it was very painful. The rest of my body was fatigued.

I googled "fatigue" and "kefir" on my phone and discovered how having too much kefir too quickly can lead to what they term the "die-off", when billions of the bad bacteria die and leave toxins that harm the body. I was lucky with only laziness and fatigue. Others online get rashes and other allergic reactions.

Up to this point, I thought kefir was just a fancy name for yoghurt. It's not. Kefir is soo much more potent.

So much more potent that some people believe it's a gift from the Prophet Muhammad. Some believe it's the manna from the Bible.

The day after was when I started seeing benefits that I attribute to kefir. I had this sudden unquenchable urge to work. The minute I opened my eyes, I reached straight for my laptop and started working on things I've been procrastinating for, for ages. Then I started cleaning my bag--I intended to only clean my bag--but I ended up cleaning my entire room and had 2 boxes worth of trash.

I realized I had 5 nail cutters in my drawer. I always believed that silly me kept on misplacing them. Every time I lose one I buy another and promise myself this is the the nailcutter I will always keep in the drawer. There, they are all there.

If you are scratching your head asking, what's good gut bacteria got to do with cleaning up my room? You know how we use phrases like "I have a gut feeling..." to describe our intuition and "he's really got guts" to describe someone who is courageous to do what is right? Well, scientists are beginning to understand the role of our guts that they now call the second brain. That though mathematics, poetry, philosophy and most thought processes still happen in the first brain (cerebrum), the emotional well being is decided in the gut.

So if stress and tension can cause bad bacteria to florish in the gut, now I imagine a rave party in your tummy whenever you get the butterflies.

rave party

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