Kombucha is fermented drink made of black tea and sugar (may be from different sources like cane sugar, honeyorfruit). After the fermentation, kombucha becomes carbonated and it contains vinegar, benzymes, -vitamins, probiotics and a very high amount of acid (gluconic, aceticand lactic). Although kombucha is usually made with black tea, it can be made with green tea too.
THE KOMBUCHA’SBENEFICIAL PROBIOTICS
The Food Microbiology has listed these probiotics:
THE 7 HEALTH BENEFITSOF KOMBUCHA:
Kombucha possesses a great detoxifying capacity. The best example would its ability to counteract liver cell toxicity. In a recent study, the liver cells were protected from the oxidative injury and maintained their normal physiology despite being exposedto toxins! The researchers claim that this is because of the antioxidant activity of Kombucha, which is very beneficial in the battle against liver diseases.
- It Improves Digestion
The antioxidant properties of kombucha are able to stop the free radicals from creating chaos in the digestive system. Moreover, kombucha improves digestion because of its high levels of beneficial acid, enzymes and probiotics. There are some studies which have shown that kombucha prevents and heals stomach ulcersandleaky gut. Kombucha can also fight candida yeast as a result of its beneficial probiotics that will help the gut to fill up with good bacteria which will reduce the candida yeast.
- Increases Energy
Kombucha provides us with energy as a result of the formation of iron that is released from the black tea during the processof fermentation. The iron boosts the blood hemoglobin and it improves the oxygen supply. It also contains b-vitaminsand caffeine in very small amounts, both of which can energize the body.
- Immune Health
The general positive effects of drinking kombucha are best seen in its ability to control the free radicals through antioxidant activity. A very powerful antioxidant which is known as D-saccharic acid-1, 4-lactone (DSL) was found during the process of thekombucha fermentation. This antioxidant cannot be found in black tea alone. Some scientists believe that the combination of DSL and vitamin C in kombucha is able to protect against cell damage, inflammatory diseases, tumors and overall depression of the immune system. You should also know that the probiotics in kombucha support the immune system too.
- Cancer Prevention
The Cancer Letters published one study claiming that the consumption of glucaric acid that can be found in kombucha reduces the risk developing cancer.
- Joint Care
Kombucha is able to help heal, prevent andrepair joint damage in many different ways. It is rich in glucosaminethat increase the production of synovial hyaluronic acid. That supports the preservation of collagen in the whole body and prevents arthritic pain. AlsoKombucha reduces the wrinkles on the skin.
- Weight Loss
A 2005 study showed that kombucha is able to improve the metabolism and limit the fat accumulation. Even though there is a need to for a few more studies before these findingscould be confirmed, it makes sense that kombucha promotes the weight loss process due to its high content of acetic acid and polyphenols, proven to help in the process of weight loss.
HOW YOU CAN MAKE KOMBUCHA
Kombucha Recipe for 8 cups:
Ingredients You Will Need:
- Onebig glass/metal jar or bowl that has a big wide opening. Avoid using a plastic jar or bowl because the chemicals in the plastic might leach into the kombucha during the periodof fermentation.
- One large piece of cloth or some dish towel to secure the opening of the jar with a rubber band. You should not use a cheese cloth since it allows the particles to pass through.
- 1 SCOBY disk which you can buy at health food stores or online at a very low price. The SCOBY disk can be vacuumed in small pouch and transported to your house for only a few dollars while it’s preserving all of the active yeast ingredients.
- Half a cup of organic cane sugar or raw honey. The quality of the sugar is very important if you wantto avoid contaminants. Therefore you should always look for organic sugar.
- 8 cups of water (preferably filtered)
- 4 black tea bags (organic). There are also some people who like to use green tea, even though black tea is the kind that is used in most cases.
- One cup of pre-made kombucha. You can buy or use from a previous kombucha batch that you’ve made.
- You need to boil the water in a big pot on the stovetop. When it’sboiled, remove from the heat and then add the teabags and the sugar, and stir well until the sugar dissolves.
- Leave the tea and the pot to steep for around 15 minutes and then remove the tea bags.
- Let the mixture to cool to a room temperature (it usually takes about 1 hour). When it’s cooled, add the tea mixture to the big glass jar/bowl. Drop in the SCOBY disk and a cup of pre-made kombucha.
- Cover your jar/bowl with a cloth, and try to keep the cloth in the plate by using rubber hand gloves. The cloth needs to cover the wide opening of the jar and stay in place, and it also needs to be thin enough so as to allow air to pass through.
- Leave the kombucha to sit around 7–10 days depending on the flavor you’re looking for. Less time makes a weaker kombucha that tastes less sour and a longer sitting time kombucha causes longer fermentation process and develops much stronger taste.
Usually, the warmer your home is, the less time Kombucha needs to ferment. Store it into smaller glass bottles and refrigerate them for no less than 24 hours. When it’s cooled, you can enjoy drinking homemade Kombucha!
MAKING A FLAVORED KOMBUCHA:
The recipe above is for the basic, unflavored kombucha. For more flavors, you can also add fresh-squeezed orange, pomegranate or cranberry juices; fresh-squeezed lemon or lime juice; ginger root juicewhich can be made by blending ginger and water, or many other natural and low-sugar flavors. It’s suggested to add these flavors after the kombucha has fermented and ready for consumption.
THE POTENTIAL SIDE EFFECTS OF KOMBUCHA:
There are few possible side effects for persons who already have weakened immune systems and digestive problems. It’s better to start drinking a small amount of Kombucha, especially at the beginning (about 8 oz. a day). You should gradually increase the Kombucha consumption in order to eliminate the possibility of side effects. Persons who should limit their kombucha consumption are pregnant womenandthose with poor immune systems.