Lately, kombucha tea has become very popular. Now you can see it everywhere: from supermarket shelves to third-generation coffee shops and even in organic markets.
But do we know what kombucha is good for? What is it made of? Was it discovered recently?
Let’s explore more about kombucha!
Kombucha tea is a carbonated drink discovered in China about 2000 years ago. It is also called ‘The Elixir of Life’. The name of the tea comes from Dr. Kombu who took tea fungus from Korea to Japan. And ‘cha’ means ‘tea’ in Chinese.
Kombucha is made from sugar and tea with a tea fungus called ‘scoby’. Scoby is the starter culture and it is the result of the symbiotic relationship between yeast and bacteria. As you may have noticed, sugar is used when fermenting the kombucha. However, according to research, most of the sugar that is used during the process is eaten by the bacteria and yeast. At the beginning of fermentation, kombucha has 30 calories and 2-3 grams of sugar. But these figures change during the process. The longer the fermentation period, the lower the sugar content.
Kombucha is a slightly sweet, slightly carbonated, fizzy and acidic beverage. Black, green or white tea is used in its making. It can be flavored with lemon, mint, jasmine, lavender or rose to give a different flavor and make it easier to drink.
The daily recommended allowance for kombucha to avoid toxicity and side effects is 100-300 ml. All healthy individuals and children over 3 years of age can drink it. Pregnant and lactating women, people who have chronic illnesses, and those who are receiving chemotherapy should consult their doctors before partaking.
How to make kombucha tea?
To make kombucha, you need tea (black, green or white), scoby (starter culture), sugar, water, a sterile glass bottle, and some cloth. Allow the kombucha to ferment for 7-30 days. The ideal temperature for fermentation is 79-81° F. As the kombucha ferments, the amount of sugar decreases and the taste of vinegar becomes more prominent. You can control this process at home but, if you are buying your kombucha from a store, you should read the label to see if sugar was added.
Once your kombucha is ready, be sure to store it in a cool, dark place, such as a refrigerator.
What are the health benefits of kombucha tea?
- Potential source of pre and probiotics
- Good for intestinal health
- Regulates digestion system
- Boosts immune system
- Contains antioxidants
- Helps to regulate blood glucose levels in patients with diabetes
- Supports heart health
- Lowers cholesterol levels
- Rich in B complex vitamins, such as thiamin and niacin
- Helps remove toxins from the body
- Helps in the treatment of skin diseases
- Effective in losing water weight and burning fat
- May help protect against cancer
Kombucha is beneficial for your body’s gut microbiome because of its probiotics, but more research is needed. Still, kombucha is a better option than all other sugar-added beverages.