Caspian Sea Yogurt also goes by the name Matsoni yogurt. It contains a myriad of live cultures and is one of the few yogurts that will culture at room temperature. It's also a serial culturer; meaning you can use it continually to create new cultures.
It originates from the Cocassos region between the Black Sea and Caspian Sea. The region is renowned for the longevity of the population. It is also extremely popular in Japan and has been the subject of significant clinical research in that country.
It is a mesophilic culture, meaning it thrives at a moderate temperature. Culturing in winter might mean finding a warmer part of the house.
It is a slightly tart yogurt with a unique viscous consistency. As it is a yogurt you create at home it is not as thick as supermarket yogurt since it is not builked out with emulsifiers.
Your starter culture will make about 500 mls of yogurt. You can then continuously re-culture from successive cultures.
THINGS TO NOTE:
Caspian Sea Yogurt cultures similarly to other yogurts in that it is a bacterial only culture. The cultures specific to Caspian Sea Yogurt are:
Lactococcus is a gram-positive bacteria that is lactic acid producing. It works under aerobic and anaerobic conditions and resists oxidation which helps to give Caspian Sea Yogurt it's long storage life.
It is also bacteria used by the dairy industry to improve the flavour and preservation qualities of cheese. Caspian Sea Yogurt contains the subspecies cremoris, which the dairy industry uses with hard cheeses.
Gluconoacetobactor is of the acetic acid group of bacteria and is a bacteria similar to the bacteria in vinegar and kombucha. The bacteria are useful in the breakdown of food in the body and controlling the population of unhelpful bacteria.
Lactobacillus sakei takes its name from the Japanese alcohol Saki, where it was first identified. It is found naturally in meat and fish and has a role in preservation.
Lactobaccilus sakei might be found in this culture.
Lactobaccilus lactis produces a polysaccharide (complex sugar) that gives Caspian Sea Yogurt its unique characteristic viscosity.
Polysaccharides make a major contribution to keeping our intestines in good health.
Polysaccharides are composed of long molecules joined together with complex sugars. They are long and narrow which results in forming solutions in the intestine that are highly viscous. They are not digested in the small intestine which has the effect of slowing down digestion and a slowing down of the release of glucose from glucose polymers (complex long-chained molecules made of a variety of single molecules) and a slowing down generally in the release of food.
This has significant beneficial effect in reducing the glycemic index of food in the system.
The short answer to this is everyone. Eighty per cent of your immune system is located in your digestive system. If you want to maintain a robust immune system and optimal health, the place to start is with your gut.
Caspian Sea Yogurt will provide some specific benefits:
Caspian Sea Yogurt was brought to Japan by a Kyoto University professor who was studying longevity. Part of his research was studying the people of a number of Georgian villages that lived extremely long lives.
He brough the culture back to Japan along with his findings that the yogurt played a role in the longevity of the people of the Cocassus.
Caspian Sea Yogurt is now extremely popular in Japan, another country renowned for the longevity of the population. There was an announcement in Japan in 2005 by a company called Fujicco who are food manufacturers and distributors, that they had just shipped their one millioneth culture.
Cancer risk & prevention
Suppression of Cancer Cells
There is a body of evidence that links the suppression of cancer cells with the range of bacteria that appear in Caspian Sea Yogurt, particularly lactococcus lactis.
Cognitive & mental functioning
Gut Health & Mental Health
When you think of neurons you automatically think of the brain. But we also have neurons in our gut. And those neurons also produce neurotransmitters which are an integral part of regulating and normalising function.
Serotonin which is critical in mood control and the range of aggressive and depressive feelings and actions is generally thought of as being produced by the brain but the greatest amount of serotonin is produced by the gut.
Changes in diet and the subsequent alteration of our gut bacteria population commonly bring about significant changes in the level of mood and mental health.
Daily health & wellbeing
Caspian Sea Yogurt will support everyday health through supporting the body's immune system. A healthy gut microflora is a base requirement for strong and robust everyday health and vitality.
Your body's ability to detect and destroy virus, bacteria, cancer and the like is based on the ability of your immune system to launch an attack against the invaders. A compromised gut flora severely weakens the ability of the body to launch that successful attack.
The state of your gut flora has an impact on a whole range of health conditions and indicators, including:
Caspian Sea Yogurt supports the absorption of vitamin B and K.
Diabetes & blood
Diabetic Gut Bacteria Populations
As with the research indicating there are fundamentally differing gut bacteria populations between obese and lean people there is also research showing that the gut bacteria populations between diabetics and non-diabetics.
Diabetics have a smaller amount of the bacteria population called Firmicutes and larger amounts of the population called Bacteroidetes and Proteobacteria compared to non-diabetics.
There is also a strong correlation between the type of bacteria that colonise your gut (and the ratio between them) and insulin resistance.
Polysaccharides & Diabetes
The polysaccharides in Caspian Sea Yogurt have the effect of slowing down the release of sugar and food in the small intestine. This reduction in the glycemic index (GI) is of significant benefit for people with diabetes.
Hyperglycaemia (excess of glucose in the bloodstream), is typically found in type 2 diabetes. It plays a significant role in oxidative induced stress of the endothelium (a thin layer of cells that line the blood vessels).
The endothelium lines our entire circulatory system including the heart, all veins, arteries and capillaries and forms a barrier between the blood and other structures in the circulatory system, allowing the blood to flow more smoothly and circulate freely and quickly throughout the entire body.
A number of studies have shown that a diet containing short-chain fatty acids (SCFA’s) present in yogurt through the milk content and produced in Caspian Sea Yogurt as part of the polysaccharide breakdon improve insulin sensitivity and reduce blood pressure. One study showed that SCFA’s:
Healthy Gut Flora
One of the cornerstones of good health is a healthy gut flora. Caspian Sea Yogurt contains an extremely robust range of healthy bacteria; particularly lactobacillus lactis cremoris. The typical cremoris count will be around one billion bacteria per gram.
Inflammatory Bowl Disease
Probiotics have been successful in treating human gastrointestinal inflammations. There is also research showing the effect of lacobacillus lactis cremoris in colitis induced in mice through the inhibition of the inflammatory response.
We are What we Eat
What you eat affects your gut flora composition, but there is also an opposite effect: the state of your gut flora can have an impact on what you eat.
People with gut dysbiosis (unbalanced gut flora), particularly yeast overgrowth, often feel sugar cravings. Gut flora for some people plays a significant role in particular food cravings and ultimately food choices.
Maternal & infant health
Infant Health & Development
There is a burgeoning level of research indicating that the state of gut health, particularly the presence, absence or composition of gut microorganisms during infancy and early childhood has a lifelong effect on gene expression. Gut bacteria composition has shown to have a strong link to child brain development and a range of behaviours
Research shows that a lack of helpful gut bacteria has a direct impact on the signalling mechanisms and pathways that facilitate motor control, learning and memory.
Infant Immune System
The development of a healthy gut flora in the first three weeks of life plays a crucial role in the proper development of the infant immune system. The research shows that babies who acquire an unhelpful gut flora makeup are left susceptible to the development of a number of risks, particularly around there learning and development.
A compromised gut flora can place a baby at risk of a range of learning and development difficulties ranging right through to ADHD and autism.
There is an interesting link between gut flora and ‘inherited’ obesity. The gut flora of babies is passed on from mother to infant during birth, breastfeeding and the close contact of mother and baby throughout the early years. Children also come into contact with a range of micro-organisms from other close family members. The child is thus populated with the gut flora that characterises an obese person.
There is a range of evidence showing the intestinal micro-flora of children in the first year of life is a risk factor in becoming obese. Low levels of bifidobacteria make children susceptible to weight gain.
Obesity & Gut Flora
If you are looking to lose weight, or struggling to lose weight one are that might be holding you back is the composition of your gut flora. There are a number of studies that show the composition of gut flora is radically different between obese people and lean people.
The research also shows that the gut flora can be fundamentally altered through the introduction of probiotics and diet change.
There are a range of studies with animals on the relationship between gut flora and weight and a number of the studies show:
Gut Flora and Weight Loss
Managing your gut flora should be an essential component of any weight-loss plan. In fact I would recommend that gut flora is sorted as a number one priority, otherwise you can put yourself through a lot of effort and pain without realising the gains that you should.
Simply eating a commercial yogurt will not make a lot of difference in most people who are looking for a significant change in their gut flora composition. A number of things need to be done in tandem to optimise your gut flora population:
Your Caspian Sea yogurt culture (sometimes called the villi) generally arrives the day af ter it has been couriered for non-rural addresses. By the time you receive it there may be be some over-fermentation depending on the time taken and the temperature. This should not affect its ability to re-culture however.
The best way to start your new culture is to refrigerate it for a while to get it back down to a cold temperature and then start a new culture using half of the culture in the container. Leave the other half in the fridge as a back-up.
To start your culture, follow these instructions:
We send cultures to rural delivery addresses but the risk is yours. There is a risk that you may not receive your culture for two or three days and the chances of successfully reculturing after three days are problematical.
We would recommend you send the culture to work or a friend or relative with instructions to open the container immediately and refrigerate.