Recent health trends have popularized kombucha tea like never before. People have been drinking it and using it as a folk medicine and cure-all for centuries, but only recently have hipsters and health aficionados started drinking and producing the beverage in massive quantities. Even many local brewpubs have started keeping some on tap next to their best local craft beer selection. Unlike beer, though, it’s much lower in alcohol content. Because it goes through a fermentation process, it does contain some alcohol, but even for those not as concerned about health, it makes for a refreshing alternative to full-alcohol drinks.
Kombucha’s been around for thousands of years and originated in ancient China, where people used it medicinally for health. In modern times, the health benefits it offers alleviate some of the chronic conditions we suffer as a result of stressful living. It’s been touted as an elixir good for everything from cancer prevention to simple use as a general health tonic.
Kombucha tea gets created when the maker combines a special bacteria colony with yeast, commonly referred to as a SCOBY, short for symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast. It’s commonly considered the tea’s “mother,” because users can take part of it to reproduce and make more batches of the tea. This method allows the yeast’s alcohol to get fermented into an acid that makes the drink much lower in alcohol than beer.
One of the reasons the drink has gained such a following among health-conscious people is that it is naturally packed with probiotics. It’s also full of enzymes, antioxidants and amino acids. This drink retains its sweetness through the fermentation process, making it an ideal drink for refreshing after activity that depletes the body of resources.
One of the main reasons the drink has caught on in health circles is because of its known ability to help the body detoxify itself. It helps our livers and kidneys to function optimally, though drinking too much can dehydrate the body.
Another noted benefit seen in kombucha is its ability to provide for joint wellness and combat the symptoms of arthritis. It does this by providing the body with glucosamines, which help the body hold onto its collagen, essential not just for skin health but also for proper joint function.
The probiotics contained in the beverage have gained a reputation for helping all manner of digestive issues, ranging from leaky gut to ulcers to simple overgrowth of non-beneficial bacteria in the intestines. It’s been shown to be equally as effective as prescription drugs for treating heartburn and ulcers.
Many people swear by the tea for the treatment of fatigue, and there is ample evidence to support this idea. Kombucha contains iron from the black tea used in its production as well as a bit of caffeine and some B vitamins, all of which have a strong reputation for invigorating and strengthening the body.
The drink has also gained some traction as a support for weight loss and fighting cancer. Studies have revealed that, true to its history, the drink does help to prevent cancer and speed recovery time for those who have undergone cancer treatment already. Another study proved that the drink boosts the body’s metabolism and decreases our ability to accumulate and store fat.
Clearly kombucha offers a wealth of benefits to the drinker, especially those who consume it on a regular basis. For anyone looking to cleanse and detoxify the body without harsh supplements, this drink provides an ideal alternative. Other than cutting-edge brewpubs, people can purchase kombucha at most grocery stores, health food stores, and health-oriented cafes and restaurants.