The science behind why we believe that kombucha is an important healthy addition to your life.
Kombucha, the elixir of immortality, has been brewed for thousands of years, sought out by the emperors and kings of old for its anti-aging, heart and brain protecting, immune-boosting properties.
Kombucha is a brewed tea that has been fermented for 7-10 days in an environment that is condusive to the growth of living gut-friendly healthy bacteria, probiotics.
Home to 80 percent of the immune system, the gut is considered the second brain, with the body’s serotonin, dopamine, and other important hormones necessary for a balanced brain chemistry manufactured in the gut.
Vitamin B12, an extremely common deficiency which causes low energy states, can also be made in a gut with sufficient healthy bacteria present. Read on to know the health-highlights that are more than reason enough to give this magical tonic a try!
So, first of all, lets break it down…what IS kombucha?
Thought to have originated in Ancient China, and sought after for hundreds of years by those who heard of its health benefits, kombucha is a sparkling beverage made by fermenting sweet tea (brewed tea sweetened with sugar from fruit, honey or cane sugar) with a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY), which floats on top of the drink and which consumes the sugar and caffeine present. In turn, as the fermentation progresses, kombucha is formed as the tea and sugar are converted into a carbonated, slightly bubbly and vinegary solution, high in organic acids, B vitamins, digestive enzymes, and probiotics.
What results is an incredibly detoxifying elixir that is slightly sweet, slightly tangy, bursting with vitamins, and naturally bubbly. It’s an amazing way to lose weight, cut down on sugar, and ditch that soda habit, while still having a sweet, fizzy, yummy drink!
Allow me to digress a little further… to go into more depth on the health benefits of Kombucha!
1. Heart health
Kombucha has been known to naturally lower triglycerides and bring cholesterol into balance. It is also very high in antioxidants, both those naturally found in tea and those produced during fermentation such as glucaric acid. These antioxidants work to counter the action of free radicals while detoxifying the body naturally, reducing inflammation, and protecting against heart disease and cancer.
2. Supports Gut Health
It’s amazing for your immunity! Did you know that 80% of the immune system is housed in the gut? We’ve already talked about the protective action that the antioxidants and beneficial acids have to protect against free radicals which wreak havoc on the gut. The most amazing benefit experienced is the way in which the probiotics boost the functioning of the immune system, help the body produce the right hormones for a balanced mind, and help the nutrients in food to be absorbed. A little known fact about probiotics is that they protect the gut and even fight off harmful unwanted bacteria in the gut! There is literally a war going on in your gut. In order to survive the battle, you want to crowd out the bad bacteria, fight them off with probiotics, who have been shown to stop candida from multiplying in the gut, thus effectively starving them of food so they die out.
3. Increases energy and mental well-being
Kombucha is naturally high in B vitamins, especially B6, which is needed for women’s health, and B12, a common deficiency. B12 is naturally energizing, and since the body’s serotonin and dopamine are produced in a healthy gut, kombucha helps your mind be more positive as well! Scientific research has found that probiotics are very effective in treating people with depression, obsessive compulsive disorders, and autism.
4. Fights off unwanted bacteria
While the probiotics in kombucha crowd out bad bacteria, they also actively destroy common bacteria which cause infections. Due to its natural antibacterial properties, kombucha has been found to fight off E. coli and other common strains of bacteria which cause food poisoning. Thus, drinking kombucha daily is a great way to avoid having to use antibiotics for food-borne stomach upset.
5. Helps to manage diabetes
The high levels of antioxidants present in kombucha have been shown to mitigate the negative symptoms that diabetics experience while supporting the functioning of the pancreas, kidneys, and liver. More on the liver below! For diabetics, I personally recommend the ginger flavor which is packed with whole raw ginger and is very effective at balancing the blood sugar. For a slightly more tart brew, remove the kombucha from the fridge and allow it to ferment for an extra 12-20 hours, during which time any residual kombucha left from the fermentation will be consumed. Be careful when opening your bottle though, as it will get a little extra fizzy! This is due to the fact that while the remaining sugar in the bottle is being converted to probiotics, Co2 is a natural byproduct of the fermentation. This natural carbonation makes kombucha feel like a nice soda alternative with none of the harmful effects of forced carbonation!
6. Powerfully detoxifies the liver
Our livers are working extra hard day and night to cleanse the body, getting rid of toxins that we take in from our environment and from the food and air around us. Kombucha has been shown to protect the liver and aid it in its detoxification process.
I’ll be honest. When moving to Delhi, we were warned about the high levels of pollution. With the health benefits of kombucha in mind, however, we moved here to make this powerful gut detoxifier more readily available so that the negative effects of pollution could be effectively mitigated.