Health benefits of kombucha By Varun Venaik
Kombucha is a fermented fizzy beverage with a sweet and sour taste, that is made out of black or green tea, sugar and yeast. The basic process for making kombucha involves mixing together these ingredients and setting them aside for a week (or a longer period of time, for example a month). During this time period, bacteria, acetic acids and small quantities of alcohol are generated, in a process that is known as fermentation (the same process which produces sauerkraut or kimchi from cabbage, or produces yoghurt from dairy). Through the fermentation process, a film is created on top of the liquid which is known as SCOBY, which is short for symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast. The scoby that is created through making one batch of kombucha can be used to produce another batch of this fabulous drink – or can be given to your friends or family to make their own batch of kombucha, in the same way people share their sourdough starters! varun-venaik-blog Kombucha has had remarkable growth in popularity over the last few years, with a wide variety of brands and flavours available in grocery stores these days (think lemon and ginger, peach and orange and mango). Whilst it might seem like a relatively new creation, kombucha is actually an ancient beverage with its origins dating back many many years ago. While many people choose to buy kombucha from the fridge aisle of their local supermarkets, others have learned how to brew it themselves at home.   Kombucha has a number of significant health benefits, which I will go through in this article.   Important source of probiotics The process of fermentation of a food or beverage product generates probiotics which are considered to be very good for gut health and microbiome. Probiotics are known as healthy bacteria and are incredibly good for our guts – they assist with relieving symptoms of irritable bowel disease, diarrhea and indigestion.  Probiotics can also assist with relieving inflammation and even promote healthy weight loss.   Good source of antioxidants When made out of green tea, kombucha is an important source of antioxidants. Antioxidants fight free radicals that can damage our cells. Antioxidants are amazing or strengthening immunity and enabling blood sugar management.   Bacteria fighting benefits When kombucha is fermented, a substance known as acetic acid is produced. Acetic acid, which is also contained in vinegar-based products has strong antibacterial properties and can assist the body in fighting bacteria-based infections and suppress the growth of harmful bacteria.   Low in calories and fills you up Kombucha that is made without added sugars is very low in calories and can fill you up. On the days that I intermittently (you can read more about my intermittent fasting journey here), kombucha is a valuable addition to my diet as it fills me up, satisfies my thirst and feels like an exciting fizzy drink to consume without adding substantial calories (compared to a coke, juice or other soft drink).     As you can see, the numerous benefits of kombucha make it a great addition to add to your diet. Kombucha is so easy to find in grocery stores these days. While the cost of kombucha can add up, you can often find certain brands on sale in particular weeks. And if you are game enough, you can even decide to experiment with making kombucha at home. If you decide to do this, make sure you follow a detailed step by step process from someone who knows what they’re doing, and ensure you are keeping a sanitary environment and using extremely clean equipment and containers to avoid the risk of bacterial contamination.   Also Read:  

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