Little Miss Muffet sat on her tuffet, eating her kefir and whey. Along came a spider who ate alongside her, and happily digested all day.
In the summertime, I receive many letters from people who have trouble with their kefir separating into whey and curds. Part of this is the warmer temperatures and also the activity of the good bacteria in kefir. When people see whey, they think it’s gone bad, which couldn’t be further from the truth.
Whey is a superfood
Don’t throw out your kefir if it separates into whey and curds. Your whey, although less appealing to many individuals, is a superfood which contains a lot of healing properties. There is something known as “The Whey Cure” which was used throughout history. In fact, Hippocrates and Galen, two founding fathers of medicine, frequently recommended whey to their patients to heal them. This whey was often referred to as “liquid gold.”
Powerful antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties
Whey has a lot of protein. One of these proteins, Lactoferrin, acts as a powerful antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory. It also contains vitamin B2, or riboflavin, which helps the body to convert carbohydrates into fuel. Bovine Serum Albumin, which is abundant in whey, is an amino acid that is an effective scavenger that removes toxic substances, and supports white blood cells and helps maintain healthy cholesterol levels.
Assists the kidneys and liver
The curds (or the cheese) portion of kefir contains most of the fat, casein, and vitamin A, but whey also contains a lot of beneficial properties and they both contain probiotics. Since most of the lactose is gone and the whey portion is 93 percent water, whey (which is rich in potassium) can help balance and remove excess fluids in the body and remove toxins. The kidneys filter wastes and toxins out of the blood and eliminate them in urine. The kidneys are constantly working and when they become overburdened, the excess toxins can collect in the body and form diseases such as gout, rheumatism, osteoarthritis, and some forms of eczema. Drinking kefir, and especially the whey, will assist the kidneys and liver in elimination of toxins.
99% lactose free
The good lactic acid bacteria in kefir eat the lactose (milk sugars) out of the milk, lower the pH, make it tart, and cause the milk protein to thicken. The digestion of the lactose in milk when these bacteria ferment milk makes kefir easily digestible. Kefir is considered a pre-digested food. The bacteria make probiotics from the sugars and also make it 99% lactose free. If it does it quickly, because of higher temperatures or too many grains per the amount of milk, the kefir will separate into whey and curds.prebiotics like Prebio Plus to your kefir after you’ve strained it. You can also add this to your kefir grains as they ferment. This is a prebiotic, which will nourish the bacteria. Prebio Plus will help your kefir as it gives it a blast of food. This keeps it from separating and can often make it creamy again. It’s good for you, too, to consume Prebio Plus as it makes your good bacteria grow and thrive and gives you a strong biotic-system in your gut. What’s really cool about Prebio Plus is that it can be used in hot or cold foods as these prebiotics cannot be killed by heat. Kefir is always good – even if it has separated. It means your house is too warm, or you need to add more milk to the amount of grains you are fermenting, or you let it ferment too long.
If you make kefir cheese and have lots of whey, you can add this to drinks and salad dressings and anything that calls for water. It is liquid gold and even gardens love it! They need nutrients too. The cheese (or curds as some like to call them) can be used just like sour cream or cream cheese in everything! I have lots of recipes in my books and blog. Keep it and use it, and you will be surprised how nourished you will feel.