Kefir: My New Obsession

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Okay, today I’m sorta coming out of left field compared to what I usually do.  Namely, it’s because I have writing ADD and sometimes it’s just hard to come up with unique content on a daily basis.  Additionally, I wanted to challenge myself, and see if I could squeeze in a Jack Bauer joke somehow (keep reading, it’s coming). But most of all, I just wanted to quickly share with everyone my latest discovery:  kefir.

About two weeks ago, I was chatting with one of our clients at the facility, Roman.  I don’t know how we got on the topic, but we started discussing popular foods people use to try to put on weight.  Being from Russia, Roman immediately suggested kefir, which piqued my interest because I had never heard of it before.

Tony:  ka-fear, you said?

Roman:  No, no, no.  KEE-fur.

Tony:  Ohhhhh, you mean Kiefer.  As in Kiefer Sutherland.  As in Jack Bauer, the barrel chested freedom fighter from the show 24.

You ever watch it?

Roman:  No, not really.

Tony: Well, just so you know, Jack Bauer played Russian Roulette with a fully loaded gun……and won. 

Roman:  Seriously, I don’t care.

Tony:  Or how about this:  1.5 billion Russians are angry with Jack Bauer.  Sounds like a fair fight. 

Hahahahahahahaa.  Get it?  It’s like a play on all those Chuck Norris jokes people say, but using Jack Bauer instead.

[crickets chirping]

Roman (in an Ivan Drago voice):  I must break you.


Okay, that’s not quite how the conversation went, but needless to say, that was an awesome Jack Bauer reference!  And, I even threw in a Rocky IV reference, too! 

So, what the heck is kefir anyways?  Essentially it’s fermented cow, goat, or sheep’s milk that’s been inoculated with kefir grains.  The grains themselves are a combination of bacteria and yeasts that form a complex and HIGHLY variable community that, when placed in milk and left for a day (or two), yields a slightly sour, carbonated beverage that resembles liquid yogurt.

Except here, instead of maybe one or two dominant strans of gut healthy bacteria that you’d normally find in a container of Greek yogurt, kefir has upwards of 10+ strains.  Plus, due to the fermentation process, much of the lactose is gone, so those who suffer from lactose intolerance may be able to use kefir without the nasty gas issues. 

Luckily for me, there’s a legit Russian store right around the corner from my apartment, so I’ve been walking in and trying out different brands.  But, for those who don’t have access to a Russian store, you can easily find kefir in most mainstream stores like Trader Joe’s or Stop-n-Shop as well.

I’m not hardcore enough to drink it straight up – although it’s not THAT bad.  Rather, I’ve simply been adding it to my protein shakes throughout the day, which provides a nice creamy thickness to them.

Seriously, try it.  And, if you know of any other ways to use kefir, I’d be interested to hear about them below!

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