UPDATE: All fermented foods contain a slight amount of alcohol due to the fermentation process. Water kefir made with a short fermentation time - 24 hours with the grains, 24 hours in the bottle - as well as the small ratio of sugar/juice:kefir - will have an alcohol content similar to that of an over-ripe banana (around .5%). For comparison: most beer has an alcohol content of 4-6% (wine is usually 7-15%) and a can is 12 oz. You would need to drink 6-8 bottles of water kefir to equal 1 beer. I think your bladder would give out before you could ever get a buzz... This is to caution you though that letting it ferment longer, or increasing the sugar/juice will increase the alcohol content (up to 1-3%). Use good judgment!
I found this list of water kefir benefits from www.waterkefirgrains.com
Here's just a few of the MANY benefits of drinking Water Kefir...
Contains a wide variety of good bacteria and beneficial yeasts as well as many vitamins, minerals, amino acids and enzymes.
Has antibiotic and anti fungal properties.
Contributes to a healthy immune system and has been used to help patients suffering from many conditions, including AIDS, chronic fatigue syndrome, herpes, Candida, autoimmune diseases and cancer.
Can stop unhealthy food cravings, especially cravings for sugar and sweet foods.
Aids in the digestion of all foods.
Has a tonifying affect on the intestines, reduces bloating, and flattens the abdominals!
It appears to cleanse the liver. In Chinese medicine the liver rules the skin, eyes, and joints. Thus, Water kefir can ease aches, joint pains, and vision woes.
Many see changes in their complexion and overall condition of their skin.
Brown liver spots may fade as can skin tags, moles, warts, etc.
With high levels of valuable minerals, including potassium, natural sodium, and chloride, the hair, skin and nails become stronger and have a prettier shine.
It appears to have a beneficial, cleansing effect on the endocrine system (adrenals, thyroid, pituitary, ovaries). Women find that their periods are healthier; some who had experienced early menopause have found this important monthly cleansing returning again.
It increases energy and gives you an overall feeling of good health.
Its tranquilizing effect on the nervous system has benefited many who suffer from sleep disorders, depression, ADHD and autism.
Drinking water kefir regularly can help promote bowel movement, relieve all intestinal disorders, reduce flatulence and help create an all together healthier digestive system.
It's cleansing effect on the whole body helps to establish a balanced inner ecosystem for optimum health and longevity.
Personally, it eased my psoriasis. It can also ameliorate eczema and acne.
It tastes great... and its really inexpensive to produce!
To make 1 quart of water kefir soda (2, 16 oz bottles) you will need 1/4 cup sucanat, 3 cups *water, water kefir grains, 1 cup (or less) organic fruit juice.
1/4 cup organic sucanat = $.33 (when you buy a 2 lb bag)
1 cup organic juice = $.48 (using organic grape juice concentrate)
It costs $.81 to make a quart of healthy, delicious water kefir soda, or $.40 for a 16 oz bottle! How awesome is that?!
*The water you use needs to have minerals intact so a spring water, mineral water, hard well water or tap water (boiled for 20 minutes to remove chlorine/chloramine) are your best options.