There's nothing better than a meal that's both delicious and great for you! Sometimes healthy foods can get a bad rap, as many people associate tastiness with sugar, butter, and other less-than-nutritious ingredients. When it comes to Lifeway Kefir, also known as the "champagne of dairy," this cultured milk smoothie is the epitome of tasty and nourishing. With a plethora of amazing health benefits and a variety of recipe options, Lifeway Kefir might just be the ingredient you need in your life (and your fridge).
I had never even heard of Lifeway Kefir until a few weeks ago, and I was hesitant at first since fermented milk sounded a little strange to me. Dairy products haven't always been my friend, so I wasn't sure how I'd vibe with a cultured milk smoothie. However, upon first sip, I loved the smooth and tangy experience of Lifeway Kefir. As a big fan of Greek yogurt, I immediately felt that Lifeway kefir was a liquid version of it.
Drinkable yogurt is an apt description of this creamy product, since kefir contains active cultures and probiotics just like yogurt does. It also has a similarly tart flavor that goes great with breakfast cereal or as an ingredient for sauces. Kefir is made by adding kefir culture, like grain, to milk and then allowing it to ferment for about 24 hours. It can be made from cow, sheep, or goat milk, and non-dairy options are available as well.
There are many flavor options when enjoying Lifeway Kefir, from strawberry kefir to vanilla, original and more, making it easy to choose the right flavor for you. If you're trying to stay away from sugar and other sweeteners, go for the Perfect K12 Kefir, which is completely unsweetened (but still delicious). There is also a nonfat milk and a cultured lowfat milk option, which are great ways to enjoy Kefir without the calories.
Lifeway Kefir Health Benefits
Along with having a tangy taste and a smooth, drinkable texture, this tart milk smoothie is as beneficial to your health as it is delicious. Lifeway Kefir is an excellent source of natural protein, calcium, vitamin D and potassium, making it great for bone density and muscle function. The high protein levels in this tangy smoothie keep you full for longer, thereby helping with weight loss.
Due to its high amounts of active probiotic cultures, Lifeway Kefir also supports gut health. Probiotics, which help replace the "good bacteria" in the body, aid the digestive system and improve immunity. 70 to 80% of the cells that make up the immune system are in the gut, so consuming probiotics is a great way to support immunity.
Along with these many benefits, Kefir contains Alpha Hydroxy Acid (AHA), an ingredient in many healthcare products that supports skin health. It's also both gluten-free and 99% lactose-free, allowing those with restricted diets to enjoy Kefir without adverse affects. Kefir is also an excellent solution for those with high cholesterol, as it helps to control blood cholesterol levels. Last but not least, Lifeway Kefir even helps improve your mood by providing tryptophan, the amino acid that increases serotonin levels in your brain!
How to Use Lifeway Kefir
As delicious as Lifeway Kefir is, it can be hard to incorporate new ingredients into one's meal repertoire. I loved using Kefir for breakfast, as it works great as a replacement for either milk or yogurt. A bowl of Kefir, granola and fruit starts the day with a tasty and filling meal. Another popular way to go is to make Kefir smoothies rather than yogurt smoothies. Just make sure to shake well before using to get that perfectly smooth texture!
Kefir is also a yummy addition in many other recipes, and the Lifeway website has a whole page of them if you need inspiration! From pizza to hummus to pie filling, Kefir adds a creamy and flavorful tang to any recipe, and its plenitude of health benefits make it more than worth your while.