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Difference Between Buttermilk and Kefir

Buttermilk vs Kefir

Many know about yogurt and what range of benefits this food offers. But little are familiar with other similar fermented milk products like buttermilk and kefir. So what are these two food products and how do they differ from each other?

Kefir ‘“ the term’s etymology can be rooted to a Turkish word ‘keyif’ that literally translates as ‘pleasure.’ Yes, milk kefir is a very pleasurable ‘live’ drink. It is fermented out of whole milk. Kefir is a live drink because it can only be prepared using kefir grains. These grains contain numerous bacterial colonies, as well as, packs of yeasts, sugars, and proteins formed into small structures that look like a standard cauliflower. This is the component responsible for milk fermentation.

Like the more common baking agent ‘“ yeast, kefir grains thrives and therefore multiplies if suspended in milk; that is given the ideal temperature of course (the milk should be briefly heated). The multiplied granules will then be strained or separated from the milk prior to being drunk. It will possess a yogurt-like flavor. Even when it is already stored at room temperature, kefir still continues to ferment as it ages making it thicker and more nutritious. You’ll know that the fermenting is done, in other words ideal to consume, because kefir will have a bubbly appearance.

Buttermilk is the liquid residue after the churning of butter. However, the more recent commercially manufactured buttermilk these days is made by skim milk fermentation with the use of lactic acid bacteria. This is the reason why it is popularly known nowadays as cultured buttermilk. The lactic acid is the ones responsible for acidifying the milk. The end result forms several proteins that make buttermilk thicker than other regular milk products.

In terms of the active cultures involved in the two fermented products, kefir obviously has more live cultures. It is said to possess more than 12 different microorganisms and cultures whereas each type of buttermilk has one specific probiotic strain.

Overall, drinking or eating kefir and buttermilk is beneficial to one’s health because it generally aids in the digestion of food. These dairy products pave way to a healthier gut or intestines that can also allay certain gastrointestinal conditions. A regular intake of either a kefir preparation or buttermilk can even reduce the risk of colon cancers.

Although both kefir and buttermilk has probiotics, they still differ from each other because of the following:

1. Kefir has more active cultures than buttermilk.

2. If you churn butter from cream, you’ll produce traditional style buttermilk. Nevertheless, both cultured buttermilk and kerif undergo some fermenting processes.

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