By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 5/13/2014 7:17 AM
For those who like a little crunch in their smoothie, a few chia seeds or berries are a great addition. For those who like a lot of crunch, add a lot of both! This floral blend has a nice, light, lemony flavor from adding in a pinch of cardamom and a splash of kefir. Each refreshing sip packs in chia’s omega-3s, blackberries’ antioxidants, and the probiotic power of Lifeway Kefir.
Hibiscus Berry Kefir Smoothie
2/3 cup brewed hibiscus infusion, cooled
1 tablespoon chia seeds
¼ teaspoon cardamom
1 cup frozen blackberries or mixed berries
½ cup Lifeway Organic Lowfat Pomegranate Açai Kefir
Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Sweeten with honey to taste.
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 5/11/2014 7:18 PM
As part of our new #MotherCulture campaign, we’re interviewing moms all month for their inspiring takes on healthy motherhood. Moms have one of the toughest jobs in the world and we at Lifeway applaud you for all that you do to make our world a happier, healthier place!
Mom: Charlotte Hilton Andersen, 35, Denver, CO, mom of four kids, age four to 11.
Q: How have your parenting skills changed with each child?
A: With our first one, I was so anxious. I’d watch him sleep just to make sure he was still breathing! By the last one, we trusted them more and trusted our parenting skills more.
Q: Did you have any strange cravings with your various pregnancies?
A: I had very distinct cravings with each. During my first pregnancy, I was a vegetarian but I craved hamburgers and I thought I was awful for it! With my second one, I craved healthy things like blueberries and lemonade. And with our daughter, I could eat an entire watermelon in one sitting.
Q: Does your family drink kefir or use probiotics to stay healthy?
A: My oldest, Micah, was in hospital at nine months old with an unknown infection and a fever of 108 degrees. He almost died. Doctors gave him IV antibiotics, and they worked, but they wiped out all of the good bacteria in his gut and he would up contracting C. difficile, abacteria that can cause all kinds of horrible symptoms. He had diarrhea all the time. Finally, one doctor prescribed probiotcs, and it turned Micah around so fast – it was the closest thing to a medical miracle I have ever seen. I’ve kept probiotics on hand ever since, in all different forms: I sprinkle the powder on their food, my kids drink dairy kefir and I drink the non-dairy kind. We have the Mother Culture at home! I make a kind a homemade soda with it, fizzy and delicious. Any time one of my kids complains of a tummy ache or constipation, they get probiotics. It’s one of the rare “medicines” that don’t have side effects.
Q: Any good tips for work-life balance?
A: I’m not great at finding that balance - I wake up early and stay up super late. But I do believe mothers should be kinder to themselves and know that they’re doing their best no matter what they might think. A lot of us have guilt, but if your kids are healthy and happy, whatever you’re doing is working.
Q: Where can we learn more about you and your take on all things health, fitness, nutrition and parenting?
A: Check out my blog, The Great Fitness Experiment, http://www.thegreatfitnessexperiment.com and my book, The Great Fitness Experiment: One Year of Trying Everything. I also blog for the Huffington Post.
Follow Charlotte on Twitter @CharlotteGFE
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 5/11/2014 5:00 AM
The benefits of abundant and diverse microflora in infants have been in the news lately. The news that a healthier community of gut bacteria can help babies calm down from colicky episodes has had our phones at Lifeway ringing off the hook!
“How soon can I start giving my baby your probiotic kefir?” deranged and sleepless parents ask us.
We suggest checking with your doctor before making any dietary shifts for your little ones, but in general, you can give your baby kefir at the same time they would start eating yogurt. It is not a substitute for breast milk or infant formula.
To get a first hand perspective on the subject of babies who love kefir, we sat down with our Vice President of Project Management and new mom, Fallon Fleyshman Morgan to talk #MotherCulture, perfect purees, and morning routines with her adorable daughter, Siena.
What does #MotherCulture mean to you?
I’m a new mommy so I’m still figuring out what #MotherCulture means to me. I am shocked by how easily I adapted into motherhood and have naturally figured out what is important to me like making sure my baby eats organic produce. We’ve been making all her food since she was 6 months old and she has quite the developed palate now.
Any baby food making method or recipe you’d like to share?
Something super easy and quick… I’ll steam peeled/chopped apples and pears and puree them. Then I make a small bowl of organic oatmeal and top it with Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Plain Kefir mixed with the apple/pear puree. She’ll usually have that for breakfast.
How do you find time to connect with your child one on one during the week?
I love waking up with her in the morning. Every morning I make Sienna breakfast, we eat together and then get to play before I run off to work. We read books, talk and play music. Once in a while, hop back in bed to wake her dad. It’s the best part of our day.
Probiotic Cantaloupe Soup
1 cup cantaloupe, cubed
1 cup mango, peeled and cubed
½ cup Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Plain Kefir
Puree melon and mango in a food processor until smooth. Stir in kefir. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour before serving.
Creamy Kefir Greens
2 cups broccoli or green beans
1 cup Lifeway Organic Whole Milk Plain Kefir
Steam greens until fully cooked. Puree in a blender or food processor until smooth. Stir in kefir. Chill for 1 hour before serving.
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 5/9/2014 9:37 AM
Breakfast in bed can be a great treat, but don’t be lazy about your Mother’s Day gifts! Get mom on her feet and enjoying her special day! #MotherCulture is always being up for a new adventure!
Send your mom out on the town in style with a cool cruiser bike! We are not going to suggest fitness gear, as moms of all shapes and sizes are beautiful the way they are. But cruising around on a rad bike will get her blood flowing, her skin glowing, and her inner confidence showing!
Appreciative sons and fathers might grab mom by the elbow and whisk her away to a swing dance lesson or a tango session. Daughters might get a kick out of tapping the night away or learning a little hip hop ditty at your local studio!
Fresh cut flowers are popular for a reason, they are beautiful and liven up any room, just like Mom!
Learn to Paint
Take mom to your local studio for a painting class. Learning new skills is said to keep our minds sharp as we age. We’ve also heard a glass of red wine is good for your heart and the brushes and bottles classes are all the rage these days!
Did you know birds are pretty easy to take care of? Fish are another good option! Don’t let Mom suffer from empty-nest syndrome when all the kids move out; get her a parakeet or two to keep her company!
Frozen Kefir Sundaes
The perfect probiotic end to a breakfast in bed or brunch extravaganza! Lifeway frozen kefir has all the live & active cultures you love from your daily smoothie and is available nationally in your grocer’s freezer aisle. Or if you are in Chicago, check out this sweet Kefir Truck Groupon deal and have our very own Starfruit Frozen Kefir-mobile parked in your deserving mom's diveway, for half off the normal price!
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 5/7/2014 9:15 AM
Lifeway is celebrating #MotherCulture this Mother’s Day, with our Lifeway Team and our legions of kefir fans. Tonight we are hosting a Twitter Party at 7pm CST to get the #MotherCulture spirit flowing. Dress code is mom jeans casual, but the door birdie is pretty relaxed about attire. Just follow the #MotherCulture hashtag and chirp in with your thoughts on moms!
We’ve interviewed a few Lifeway staffers and IRL moms to get you in the #MotherCulture spirit.
Marina Nikolenko, Vice President of Marketing
What does #MotherCulture mean to you?
For me #MotherCulture is spending quality time with my kids, whether it’s going outside for a walk or reading a book at bedtime. Those moments are really special to me.
What are some of your favorite Mother’s Day traditions?
To me this day is about my Mom. I thank her for everything she does for me and for my family.
We usually host a brunch for Mother’s Day at our house and it’s a chance for my husband and I to try out new healthy recipes and treat our moms to a fun day with the family.
What is your little one's favorite Lifeway product?
My daughter loves Lifeway Frozen Kefir Bars, she thinks all ice cream is made from kefir.
Maria Adamovich, Accounting
What does #MotherCulture mean to you?
Finding balance between kids and work
What are some tips for getting your family or kids to eat healthier?
Not giving them any junk food choices as an option to begin with :)
How do you encourage your kids to be active throughout the day?
Going to play outside at least twice a day
What is your little one's favorite Lifeway product?
ProBugs, hands down!
Thanks for chatting with us, Lifeway Moms!
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 5/5/2014 7:19 AM
Lifeway operates three cosmic cafes in Chicago called Starfruit. The local hot spots serve up soft-serve frozen kefir to hungry Chicagoans who need a break from hot dogs, beef sandwiches, and deep dish pizza - the only other foods served in the Windy City.
In addition to delicious sundaes in fun flavors like Pear, Green Tea, and Blood Orange, Starfruit mixes up some of the most delicious smoothies in town. Creamy frozen kefir, a splash of Lifeway liquid gold, and fresh fruits and veggies are whirring together all day long in signature and custom blends. One of our favorite new menu items of 2014 is a Mediterranean dream. The Calypso’s refreshing cucumber and mint, along with a hint of coconut and a tart & tangy kick are a new local favorite.
If you can’t make it to Chicago to try one out this summer, all you need is a quick trip to your local grocer’s freezer aisle and a pint of our Lifeway Tart & Tangy Original Frozen Kefir will get you on the right track. Happy Blending!
1 cup Lifeway Original Tart & Tangy Frozen Kefir
½ cup Lifeway Lowfat Coconut Chia Kefir
½ cucumber, cut into pieces
6 mint leaves
Blend all ingredients together until smooth.
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 5/2/2014 9:19 AM
Share your images, recipes, pictures and stories of #MotherCulture!
Lifeway is proud to unveil our #MotherCulture campaign with a series of ads featuring real moms who drink real kefir. Everything, including kefir, starts with a mother. We’re sharing our real stories, now we want to hear from our friends and fans. Lifeway CEO Julie Smolyansky is utilizing her leadership role to make the world a better place for her kids to grow up and for all mothers to build healthier communities. She is dedicated to empowering families across the country to bring wholesome, nourishing foods to the table and to their busy lives, while sharing the stories of how real moms strengthen and inspire every day.
Participate in the Conversation! Sample Tweets:
• I believe every child deserves access to healthy food, a good education and a safe world to fulfill their dreams. #MotherCulture
• As a working mom, family dinners aren’t always possible, but every Sunday my kids and I enjoy a grand brunch! #MotherCulture
• My kids always treat me to flats of flowers on Mother’s Day because I love to garden and enjoy seeing them all summer! #MotherCulture
• My doula introduced me to kefir during my first pregnancy and I’ve kept up the habit! Now my 5 year is crazy about ProBugs! #MotherCulture
• I’ve saved every handwritten note my daughter has given me on Mother’s Day – my box of 33 notes is my greatest treasure! #MotherCulture
Look forward to seeing your favorite probiotic treats advertised in some of your favorite magazine publications. It’s Lifeway’s biggest ad spend to date! A #MotherCulture message might find its way to some of your favorite websites, plus on May 7th, we’ll be hosting a #MotherCulture Twitter party for our loyal fans and all maternal members of the Twittersphere. Join us!
It all starts with the #MotherCulture and what better time to celebrate the origins of life than Mother’s Day! Lifeway looks forward to celebrating the diverse cultures our fans represent in the future!
So please, tell us what #MotherCulture means to you!
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 4/30/2014 8:37 AM
If froyo is hot right now, Lifeway Frozen Kefir is on fire. Our soft serve probiotic frozen treat is making its way to a chain of Pride one-stop-shops in the Chicagoland area with a few brand new Lifeway Culture Shoppes. The Pride store of Hinsdale is open 24 hours so you can get your Lifeway Frozen Kefir fix with all the fixings at any hour!
Chicago friends might be familiar with Lifeway’s Starfruit Cafes, serving up soft serve frozen kefir in 3 bustling Chicago locations since 2011. The same great treats are a perfect fit in any quick service business with space for a soft serve machine – cafeterias, coffee shops, movie theaters and more! Contact Lifeway’s Culture Shoppe Manager Vince if you want to start your own!
On the topic of Starfruit Cafe, our #KefirTruck will be hitting the road shortly. We'll be kicking off the season at the official City of Chicago Food Truck Rally on May 5th. Come see us!
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 4/28/2014 3:32 PM
The tiny chefs of Common Threads are teaming up with Lifeway once again! This time, they’re bulking up their tiny biceps by helping scoop frozen kefir at the Common Threads World Festival in Washington DC. This annual event is a fundraiser for the organizations programming in DC, Chicago, Miami, and Los Angeles, where they teach kids in underserved communities cooking and healthy living skills. Perfectly plated by DC’s finest culinary disciples, Lifeway Pomegranate and Original Frozen Kefir was a hit!
To recreate these perfect probiotic bites at home, grab a pint of Lifeway Frozen Kefir at your local grocer, scoop, and top with chocolate chips, blueberries, and popped quinoa. The quinoa is a fun, crunchy topping that’s healthy too! Just toss a spoonful of quinoa in a pan over medium high heat and give the pan a gentle shake while the seeds pop like tiny popcorn kernels. Check out popped quinoa tutorial for tips. They won’t expand as much as regular popcorn, but they will certainly give your kefir sundae a good crackle!
By LifeWayKefir LifeWayKefir on 4/24/2014 11:23 AM
Wonder Woman, Batman, The Hulk and Captain America have some competition; a new superhero who goes by the name of Coconut Oil Man.
Honestly, is there anything coconut oil can’t do? A fantastical new health claim pops up every day, with fans claiming the liquid gold can do everything from sooth skin to shed weight to whiten teeth.
Smile brightening: Oil pulling is the hottest trend to hit mouths since Miley Cyrus’ tongue got its own Twitter account. According to the ancient practice, you swish coconut type of oil in your mouth for 10 to 20 minutes a day, with the goal of whitening your teeth and preventing bad breath. Just be sure not to spit it out in your sink; the oil will harden and could clog your pipes.
Tasty baked goods: Coconut oil is extremely heat stable, meaning it tolerates high temperatures well. Use it to stir fry Asian veggies, in fragrant Indian curries, or as a substitute for butter or shortening in muffins, brownies or scones. Beware: It’s solid at room temperature, so you’ll need to melt it down first (you can just set the jar in a bowl of hot water for a few minutes.) Or leave it as a solid and…
Supple skin: …rub it on your elbows, knees and heels to soften your skin. You can also add a few spoonfuls to a hot bath, or smooth a tiny amount over your hair to ease frizz.
Weight loss: Coconut oil has long been on nutritionists’ hit lists, thanks to its higher amounts of saturated fat. But the types of triglycerides it contains are metabolized differently in the body from other saturated fats; they’re typically used for energy rather than stored as fat. An American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study found that women who ate four teaspoons of purified Medium Chain Triglyceride oil (the type of fat found in high concentrations in coconut oil) daily for four months lost twice as much weight as those eating the same amount of olive oil. In fact, Victoria’s Secret model Miranda Kerr has revealed that she consumes four tablespoons of coconut oil every day.
Coconut oil too…oily for you? Lifewat kefir makes a tasty lowfat Coconut Chia Kefir and Tart and Tangy Frozen Coconut Kefir Bars. Feel free to swish.