Kefir Vs Yakult – Comparing Which One is Better and For What
Kefir comes from fermented milk, and Kefir grains contain yeast and probiotic bacteria. You will get this bacterium in yogurt. On the other hand, Yakult is a probiotic dairy product. It requires the fermentation of skimmed milk with a strain of the bacterium Lactobacillus.
Kefir or Kephir is a watery form of yogurt that originates from the North Caucasus in Eastern Europe. Depending on the type of milk used, the final taste of kefir can be sweet or tart.
Yakult is a drink that people across ages can consume. However, people with diabetes should avoid drinking it due to its high sugar content.
Kefir product has an expiry date, so you should check it before buying. It ensures that you can consume quality kefir. The freshness of the drink depends on various factors. In the case of Kefir, it’s better to consume it within a week past its expiry, whereas use Yakult within 40 days from the manufacturing date.
A comprehensive study goes further to help users know its ingredients and benefits. This is important when you are planning to try it for the first time.
Nutritional Benefits of Kefir
The basic ingredients in the two are quite similar. But there is a difference in its nutritional profile. Kefir is a powerhouse of nutrition due to its high minerals and vitamin content.
The quantity of the Vitamins A and D is high, along with a good amount of calcium and potassium. Taking one cup of kefir will give you only 10% of your daily Vitamin A intake, with 25% of daily Vitamin D requirements. So, check levels for details of each ingredient before you get it.
List of Ingredients in Kefir
- Pasteurized Milk: Milk is its base ingredient. Most brands will pasteurize milk to kill its bad bacteria content before the fermentation process. You can try to make Kefir at home with whole raw milk.
- Vitamin D3 – Milk will have a small quantity of Vitamin D3, but manufacturers add some more.
- Pectin – It is a kind of natural sweetener that enhances the taste of Kefir, balancing its sourness.
Presence Of Good Bacteria
The main benefit of Kefir is good bacteria in this drink that results from its fermentation process. Some of the good bacteria present are Lactobacillus Casei, Lactobacillus Rhamnosus, Lactobacillus Plantarum, Bifidobacterium Breve and others. The only live bacterium present in Yakult’s fermentation is Lactobacillus Casei Shirota.
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Nutritional Benefits of Yakult
Yakut’s’ nutritional ingredients are a little different, even though its basic is fermented milk. Its one cup equal to 50 calories which are due to added sugars. Its ingredients go as follows:
- Water: It is the primary ingredient and not milk. It is due to high water content that the drink becomes thin and has better nutrients quantity than Kefir.
- Sugar: It is the second essential ingredient. However, its high amount tends to feed the bad bacteria in your gut. It harms gut health, and Yakult promotes that.
- Glucose: It is another form of sugar.
- Non-fat milk: It adds some more calories to the total count per cup. It makes up for extra calorie that is not beneficial. Also, amino acids and healthy fats are not present in Yakult.
- Natural flavors: These flavors are mostly lab-manufactured ones from natural base items.
On a concluding note, Kefir has low sugar content and good healthy fats, whereas Yakult has high sugar content. Kefir has more bacteria content than Yakult.
Comparison of Kefir and Yakult
|Kefir||Points of Comparison||Yakult|
|It has a low sugar content||Sugar Content||High sugar content|
|It comes from cow and goat or sheep milk||Source of Milk||It comes only from cow milk|
|It contains over 30 good bacteria strains||Bacteria Strain||It has only one bacteria strain|
|It has a slightly sour and tangy taste||Flavor||It is tangy and sweet|
|North Caucasus, Europe||Place of Origin||Japan|
Health Benefits Of Kefir and Yakult
As both contain fermented milk, it has many benefits that boost gut health and work on the microbiome. Some other common benefits that apply to both of these are as follows:
- Bacteria Balance – Drinks that come from fermenting milk can restore good and bad bacteria in our system. Kefir has millions of these good bacteria in just one cup. But as Yakult has high sugar content, the potential benefits from the bacteria are negated. Sometimes, high sugar content may show adverse effects with bad bacteria, encouraging them to grow.
- Digestive Efficiency – Drinks and food from fermentation have live bacteria that break down nutrients inside the gut. It boosts gut health and improves digestive efficiency. Kefir is efficient in this function as it has more than 30 different bacteria strains. Conversely, Yakult has only one strain and may not be efficient enough to deliver adequate health benefits.
- Boosts Sleep – Tryptophan in milk may positively impact sleep as it increases melatonin in the body. If you have a glass of Kefir, it will help with good sleep. Yakult may also give similar results, but its glucose content is high and gives your body a burst of energy. Therefore, it is not perfect for getting sound sleep.
In Kefir, the good bacteria that are probiotics maintain the gut microbiome in good condition. It is the collection of microbes in the human digestive tract. There is also prebiotics with the addition of probiotics. These are indigestible fiber that acts good with probiotics and are beneficial to boost overall digestion. It can also reduce problems of inflammation.
On the other hand, Yakult helps reduce the risks of antibiotic-related diarrhea. It also helps fight cancer cells. This popular probiotic drink is available in almost 35 countries worldwide.
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Kefir gives smooth skin, whereas Yakult helps exfoliate dead skin, giving instant flawless skin and stabilizing sebum in the skin.
Kefir is beneficial for strengthening the root of the hair. But Yakult doesn’t show any significant benefit for hair care.
Other Extra Benefits
Kefir is a good remedy to minimize anxiety and stress, boosts energy level, and support detoxification easily. Yakult helps improve the digestive system and boosts one’s immunity.
Kefir soothes your feet and is suitable for use in Infant Formula. You can take Yakult with smoothies, cereals, cheesecakes, and cold foods. It also has its use in some cosmetics.
Details of Preparation of the Drinks
The drinks don’t differ much in terms of preparation. The fermentation takes place using live bacteria culture and milk. It helps digest lactose, turning it into lactic acid. So, if you try to prepare the drinks at home, you can add more or less sugar content and make the taste as per preference.
Wrapping it up
If you consider nutritional and health values, Kefir is preferable to Yakult. Taste-wise, Yakult is better due to its high sugar content. When choosing between these two the first time, it is better to get an idea of the ingredient details. Check the shelf life of these dairy products and consume them for health benefits.