Delicious Vegetarian Food at Shamballah Retreat Center in Sintra, Portugal

How fermented foods can change your well-being

Fermenting your food can be one of the easiest and healthiest ways to take care of your digestive system. Fermentation is a special technique for saving your food. The most known forms of fermentation are wine and cheese, but there are many uncommon, and very healthy, other foods that can be fermented. Fermented foods contain lots of healthy probiotics that can cause a lot of health benefits. 

According to the dictionary, fermentation is the chemical process by which molecules such as glucose are broken down anaerobically. You could say that it is the controlled process of spoiling your food but in a healthy way. It is the natural process by which microorganisms like yeast and bacteria convert carbs (like sugar) into alcohol or acids and thereby increase the growth of probiotics. When consumed or applied to the body probiotics can have amazing health benefits. For this reason, fermenting is a natural and healthy way of increasing your overall well-being.

Fruit, vegetables, and milk are all fermentable, but even meat and fish can be fermented. By fermenting the food you change its flavor, looks, smell, and shelf life, even for the better. It increases the vitamins that are contained in the food and makes the food more digestible. This process of fermentation is not known by many, but it should be. Only look at all the benefits it has! The best foods for fermentation are sauerkraut, tempeh, kombucha, miso, and last but certainly not least, kefir. Kefir is one of the easiest, most diverse fermented foods of all. Using it every day, or even every meal can make a huge difference in your overall health and well-being. 

Kefir is a miracle food created out of fermented milk. Many, many years ago, when it first was discovered, it was kept a secret by some villages. No one outside a certain circle could know about how to make it, since the effects were enormously powerful to the body and the overall health. Later on, because some spies infiltrated the villages, the secret of the kefir could spread over the world. Kefir is one of the remedies for many illnesses, like cancer or tuberculosis. Also, it is a very strong antioxidant to slow down the body from aging. It is said that the people living in the villages where kefir was discovered reached an age of hundred and twenty or hundred and thirty easily, which was the average lifespan. Kefir does many good things, but the most noticeable is that it changes the intestines, especially the colon. The colon plays a big role in our digestive systems, and kefir makes it work even better. Pollution from the body can be caught up in the colon. Kefir then works like a detergent that cleans the whole organ. It puts the digestive system back to balance. Kefir also has nutrients in itself like B vitamins, enzymes, and minerals, but the action of purifying the body is the most miraculous. 

There are different ways of consuming kefir. There is kefir milk available in the supermarket, and kefir water can be bought as well. But creating it yourself would be even better! For people who do not want to be consuming a lot of dairy products on a daily basis, water kefir is a wonderful and tasty alternative. The difference between the water and the milk kefir is that the milk kefir is more concentrated. We can not drink so much milk kefir, but we can drink lots of water kefir. 

Delicious Vegetarian Food at Shamballah Retreat Center in Sintra, Portugal
Kefir superfood

Now let’s share how you can start to make kefir water and kefir milk to increase your health!

Water kefir ingredients:

  • 1 liter of water
  • 3 tablespoons kefir grains
  • 1/2 lemon (in slices)
  • 3 tablespoons of sugar
  • 1 dried fig (or other dried fruit)
  • Applejuice
  • A glass jar
  • Kitchen paper
  • Rubber band

Step by step:

  1. Poor all the ingredients in the jar.
  2. Close the jar using the kitchen paper and the rubber band.
  3. Leave the jar in a dry cabinet for 24 hours.
  4. Filter the water and add a bit of apple juice until the water gets a nice yellowish color.
  5. Enjoy your delicious lemonade!

Milk kefir ingredients:

  • 1 liter of milk
  • 3 tablespoons of kefir grains
  • 1 glass jar
  • Kitchen paper
  • Rubber band

Keep in mind that kefir is a living being and needs a certain environment to survive. It needs to be clean, not too warm, but not too cold, environment, such as a pantry or a kitchen cabinet, out of the direct sunlight. Whenever you are preparing your kefir, we suggest not preparing it in anger or in haste, but with conscious effort. The kefir is alive and can feel the state you are in, the same as you can notice when your partner or a friend has a bad day. This state can replicate into the production and defeat the purpose.

Besides all the health benefits from drinking it, you could put the kefir on your face to create a beauty mask as well. It is cheap, natural, and alive, containing lots of antiaging chemicals. It also could reduce acne symptoms. Just apply the kefir to your face, leave it on for about 10-15 minutes to dry, and rinse it with water.

All our programs have a basic structure of healthy diet, meditation, yoga and body movement, contact with Nature.

This information is found in a very inspiring and interesting book: Eating Consciously

We often have kefir grains to give, perhaps you can check on your local health food store or a Facebook group in your area.

We hope your gut feeling is happy:)

Shamballah Team