How To Grow Lactobacillus Acidophilus

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Lactobacillus acidophilus lives in the human body and aids in digestive health. However, populations of L. acidophilus may diminish because of antibiotic use, poor diet and consumption of chlorinated water. Low L. acidophilus levels lead to an overgrowth of harmful bacteria in the human body. To reverse these effects and promote L. acidophilus growth in the digestive tract, grow the bacteria in cow's milk, goat's milk or sheep's milk and consume the resulting yogurt product.

Things You'll Need

  • Saucepan
  • 3 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup powdered milk
  • Powdered Lactobacillus acidophilus culture or 2 1/2 tablespoons yogurt with live L. acidophilus
  • Mason jar with lid, 1 quart capacity
  • Culinary thermometer
  • Spoon
  • Pour the liquid and powdered milk into a saucepan and stir until the powdered milk dissolves. Powdered milk thickens the yogurt for a more palatable texture.

  • Place the saucepan on the stove and cook over medium heat. Stir occasionally and remove from heat just as the milk begins to boil.

  • Place a culinary thermometer into the milk and allow the milk to cool until it reaches 118 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove any skin that has formed on the surface of the milk.

  • Pour the Lactobacillus acidophilus culture into the Mason jar. Obtain one batch of powdered culture from a yogurt-making supplier or purchase yogurt with live L. acidophilus cultures from a grocer.

  • Pour half of the warm milk into the Mason jar. Put the lid on the jar and shake to incorporate the L. acidophilus. Pour the remaining milk into the jar and close the lid.

  • Place the Mason jar in an oven and turn the oven light on. Place the thermometer on the oven rack next to the Mason jar. Leave the Mason jar in the oven for eight hours, checking occasionally that the oven temperature remains between 110 and 115 degrees Fahrenheit. The L. acidophilus cultures incubate and grow during this time.

  • Take the Mason jar out of the oven and taste the contents with a clean spoon. If you like the strength of the taste, place the jar into the refrigerator to cool. If you prefer a stronger flavor, allow the yogurt to incubate for two more hours and then refrigerate.

Tips & Warnings

  • Grow Lactobacillus acidophilus in a vegan medium with four young coconuts, 1/2 cup coconut water and four tablespoons of agave nectar. Blend all the ingredients, add powdered L. acidophilus culture and incubate for about four hours.
  • Sterilize the Mason jar with boiling water prior to use. Boiling sterilizes the milk used and prevents undesirable bacterial growth.

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References

  • Photo Credit yaourt image by Claudio Calcagno from Fotolia.com
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