Tibicos, tibi,& water kefir grains, sugar kefir
grains, Japanese water crystals and California bees, and in older
literature asbébées, African bees, ale nuts, Australian bees, balm of
Gilead, beer seeds, beer plant, bees, ginger bees, Japanese beer seeds
and vinegar bees. source: Wikipedia
Water kefir is a probiotic rich beverage made with water, sugar, bacteria and flavouring.
Aside from the obvious, they are pretty similar. Even
though you need milk kefir grains to culture milk, and water kefir
grains to culture sugar water, the resultant beverage has a similar
probiotic mix. They both have many strains of bacteria and yeast that
exist in a perfect balance.
No. While you may find on the internet that some
people claim to ferment all kinds of things with milk kefir grains or
tibicos grains, the bottom line is … these probiotic culture starters
have evolved to eat a specific kind of sugar and to survive in a
specific kind of medium. Milk kefir grains thrive on lactose and other
components of milk. While you may get a probiotic beverage once or
twice, eventually it will be evident that the bacteria and yeast are out
of balance. The grains will stop growing, perhaps even die, and the
beverage will show signs of being off.
Yes… with the exception that milk kefir has some
benefits imparted to it by the milk itself… protein, calcium etc.
Tibicos bacteria tend to be less in number than in home made milk kefir
so it can be tolerated better in people who are sensitive. So as far as
probiotics go, water kefir is just as beneficial and may be tolerated
better by some people.
Kefir is not a drug, so we really dislike the term
“side effects” applied to it. Sometimes when you start adding back the
good bacteria you can have a “war” of sorts in your belly. This struggle
happens as the good bacteria fight to get the upper hand and the bad
bacteria start to die off. The most common complaints are flatulence
(gas), and be warned… it can get pretty smelly. Constipation and belly
pain or discomfort, and heartburn are common complaints. We can not
stress enough that you must persist! What’s a little gas in the short
term for all of the long term benefits of a healthy gut?
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