"Why is my product "thick?""
This is a very common question and there is no need to worry! As part of our artisanal fermentation process, nothing can ever be replicated perfectly. The consistency of our coconut kefir can vary from that of water to nearly an egg white, though this is uncommon. We do recognize that high viscosity can cause confusion, but be assured that there is nothing wrong with your product. That being said, we do make every effort to pursue a consistency near water, and have achieved this 95% of the time.
FUN FACT: The viscosity you experience upon drinking our products is related to the amount of bacteria in the liquid! Ever added flour to water? It's the same concept! Other factors play a role in the quantity of CFUs in each sip, but generally a higher viscosity means more of the good stuff!
"Can I drink a whole bottle?"
Of course, but we wouldn't recommend if you are just beginning use of coconut water kefir or living foods in general. Changing from a processed diet to a real food diet greatly affects the microflora that populate our GI tracts. By adding probiotics, you begin to displace the previous population with the beneficial bacteria present in our coconut water kefir, leading to a phenomenon known as "die-off." As the population is displaced, it releases toxins that must be eliminated by the body. This process can cause nausea, sluggishness, and even headaches and fever. The question to ask yourself is, "why is my body reacting this way to this living food?" For this reason, we recommend beginning slowly and allowing your body to adjust and reach a new equilibrium. We promise you'll appreciate the results.Additionally, the modern "probiotic" industry is pushing for the consumption of more and more "probiotic-rich" foods. In reality, there is no added benefit when consuming excess probiotics. Probiotics can now be found in granola, chips, and snack bars. These products are baked, there is absolutely nothing living in these foods! Probiotics should be consumed in small portions, habitually, in order to maintain a healthy gut flora. Quality is absolutely superior to quantity in this case.
"Does "organic" matter for coconut water?"
We have all read about the ranking of produce in relation to levels of pesticide use, usually under article headlines like, "Produce: The Dirty Dozen.," with grapes and berries usually clinching the title for the highest concentrations. However, young coconuts normally don't appear on these lists on account of them mainly being used in further processing operations rather than fresh retail environments. Securing USDA certified organic coconuts for the production of our products was imperative in maintaining our ideals due to the great divide between conventional and organic production. In conventional systems, young coconuts are produced using synthetic fertilizers and fungicides to aid in disease reduction and yield. Furthermore, upon harvest, the protective outer husk is removed from the coconuts and they are soaked in a solution of bleaching agents and preservation sulfites, most commonly sodium metabisulfite. Organic isn't always an absolute necessity in regards to pesticide contamination, but in the production of young coconuts, the answer is definitive.
"Why did my product turn pink?"
The FAO ( Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations) claims when coconut water transitions to a pink color, it is due to the presence of naturally occurring phenolic-antioxidant compounds that react with enzymes in the coconut water. Treating the coconut water with fungicides and other post-harvest chemicals can impede this process, meaning the occasional pink bottle is only evidence of the integrity of our product! The aromatic coconut or Mapahrao Num Hom, better known as young Thai coconut and the base of our coconut water kefir, tends to contain higher quantities of these compounds during certain times of the season. The concentration can vary from plant to plant and does not indicate any degradation of the coconut water. I repeat, the pinking of the coconut water does not create any deleterious substances! Plus, we think it's rather pretty.
"Why young coconuts?"
The Mapahrao Num Hom variety of coconut is a cultivar of the generic Cocos nucifera L. (scientific name for the coconut with which most of us are familiar). This variety of coconut is preserved only for planting in Thailand. Recognized for the taste of its water and the sweetness of its meat, we have chosen to use this cultivar as it produces a coconut water kefir requiring no sweeteners or additives.
"How can your coconut water kefir not have any added sugar, it is so sweet?"
Thanks, we think you're sweet too. We use organic coconuts and of all the comparisons of conventional and organic produce, this has been the most prominent. The aroma, flavor, and sweetness are all incredibly superior when compared to a conventional coconut. We can assure you, the ingredients on the label are the only ingredients contained in each bottle.
"What are CFUs and how many do I need?"
CFU (colony forming unit) is a measure of the viable bacteria cells present in a substance. In other words, a CFU is a single bacterium with the ability to enter an environment conducive to growth and replicate to produce more bacteria. No definitive research exists about how many CFUs per day are most beneficial, but exposing your body to the CFUs contained in a single serving of our coconut water kefir is sufficient in repopulating an already healthy GI tract.
"Why aren't your products pasteurized?"
As a foundation of our products is being raw and alive, pasteurization is not feasible. Pasteurization involves using high temperatures over a period of time to eliminate pathogenic bacteria and preserve the product. Pasteurization does not discriminate, any beneficial bacteria present are also eliminated during this process. Our preservation process relies on pH. During fermentation, the lactic acid bacteria interact with the sugars in the coconut water producing lactic acid and carbon dioxide. This lactic acid reduces the pH to a level where harmful bacteria cannot grow. That's the beauty of our coconut water kefir, it's naturally preserved!
"Can my kids drink coconut water kefir?"
Yes! And they should! We recommend reading the answer to "Can I Drink a Whole Bottle?" above. We advise beginning with a tablespoon or less and increasing over the course of five days. At this point, die-off of the previous GI population will have taken place and the beneficial bacteria have now established themselves. Exact amounts for certain age ranges are unimportant; probiotics are a piece of everyone's internal ecosystem and should not be thought of as an extraordinarily medicinal product. All ages should start slow to ease the transition of their GI tract to a more resilient system.
"Is coconut water kefir safe for pregnant women?"
Many pregnant women have enjoyed the benefits (and taste!) of our products. With no alcohol produced in fermentation, it is a great source of probiotics.
"Will your products help my specific health issues?"
"What strains of bacteria are in your products?"
The fresh young coconut water we harvest from the shell retains 150-200 different naturally occurring strains of bacteria. However, the bacteria with which we inoculate our coconut water are what you are likely curious about. Sorry to disappoint, but the 8 strain blend we utilize is proprietary! Much effort was required to formulate the ideal combination of cultures that result in superior flavor, aroma, and consistency, while maintaining the never frozen or preserved process we innovated.
We hope this doesn't reflect poorly on our mission of maintaining transparency, but in the emerging market of coconut kefir, we are aiming to protect what allows us to produce coconut kefir free of the additives found in freeze dried cultures. We are the only producer using a special technique that allows us to use fresh cultures produced within the very same coconut water that composes our products. We can assure you that when you consume our products you are receiving the most effective, natural, and diverse probiotics available.
"Is coconut water kefir as probiotic as kombucha?"
Kombucha is not meant to be probiotic, it just happens to be. Kombucha is made using beneficial bacteria and yeast and therefore does contain some probiotics, but they are in very small quantities compared to coconut kefir and your body's requirements. This type of fermentation also requires the addition of sugar as a source of food for the bacteria and yeast. In other words, kombucha is certainly a tasty treat but is by no means a source of efficacious daily probiotics.
"Does coconut water kefir have allergens?"
Our coconut water kefir is free of wheat, soy, dairy, egg, and peanut. Of course, it does contain coconut, which is now recognized as a tree nut.
"Why is shipping so costly?"
We have asked ourselves this same question many times and unfortunately the answer is simply, "because it is." Our coconut water kefir is inherently perishable and maintaining its potency requires refrigeration. This includes recycled insulated shipping containers and reusable cooling packs, coupled with expedited shipping, leading to a less than pleasant surprise at checkout. We do not profit from shipping and ensure you are receiving the lowest shipping cost possible based on your order size and shipping location. We will always do our best to accommodate your needs.