What is Kombucha and Why Should I Drink it?
Unless you've been hiding under a rock for the last few years, you have heard about Kombucha and some of the health cliams that are being made by all sorts of celebrities and dieticians. But what is Kombucha and why is it good for our health?
First, a little background and history. Kombucha is a fermented tea whose origins date back thousands of years and has its roots in Easter Medicine from japan and China. It contains some of the same health benefits as tea such , but it is also naturally rich in probiotics, which is a key to a health digestive system Kombucha also contains antioxidants, can kill harmful bacteria and may help fight several diseases.
Here are the top 5 health benefits of kombucha, based on scientific evidence.
1) The production of Probiotics when Making Kombucha
Kombucha is made by adding certain strains of bacteria, yeast and sugar to black or green tea, then allowing it to ferment for a week or more. It is during this process the bacteria and yeast form a mushroom-like film on the surface of the liquid. This is how kombucha gets its other name, "mushroom tea." This material is a living symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast (SCOBY), and can be used to ferment new kombucha.The fermentation process produces acetic acid, which can be found in vinegar and other acidic compounds. Small trace levels of alcohol and gases that make it carbonated. A byproduct of this process is probiotic bacteria. Probiotics provide your gut with healthy bacteria. These bacteria can improve many aspects of health, including digestion, inflammation and even weight loss.
2) Kombucha Contains Antioxidants
Antioxidants are substances that fight molecules that can be potentially damaging to cells in the human body. Many scientists believe that antioxidants from foods and beverages are better in the body's fight against aging for your health than antioxidant supplements. Kombucha, especially when made with green tea, appears to have antioxidant effects in your liver. Rat studies consistently find that drinking kombucha regularly reduces liver toxicity caused by toxic chemicals, in some cases by at least 70%. While no human studies exist on this topic, it does seem like a promising area of research for people with liver disease.
3) Kombucha can Kill Bacteria
Acetic acid is also produced during the fermentation of kombucha. Like the polyphenols in tea, the antimicrobial effects of acetic acid can prevent the growth of unwanted bacteria and yeasts. able to kill many potentially harmful microorganisms Kombucha made from black or green tea appears to have strong antibacterial properties, particularly against infection-causing bacteria and These antimicrobial effects suppress the growth of undesirable bacteria and yeasts, but they do not affect the beneficial, probiotic bacteria and yeasts involved in kombucha fermentation. The health relevance of these antimicrobial properties is unclear.
4) Reduce Risk of Heart Disease
Heart disease is the world's leading cause of death, and some studies in rats show that kombucha can greatly reduce “bad” LDL and improve “good” HDL cholesterol, in as few as 30 days. Even more importantly, tea (especially green tea) protects LDL cholesterol particles from oxidation, which is thought to contribute to heart disease. Green tea drinkers have up to a 31% lower risk of developing heart disease, a benefit that may also apply to kombucha.
5. Prevent Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes affects over 300 million people worldwide. A study in diabetic rats found that kombucha slowed down the digestion of carbs, reduced blood sugar levels and also improved liver and kidney function. Green tea Kombucha is likely to be even more beneficial. In fact, a review study of almost 300,000 individuals found that green tea drinkers had an 18% lower risk of becoming diabetic. More studies are needed to investigate the benefits of kombucha for the control of blood sugar.
6) Lower Cancer Risk
Cancer is one of the world's leading causes of death. In certain test-tube studies, kombucha helped prevent the growth and spread of malignant cancer cells due to its high concentration of antioxidants and tea polyphenols, which can block gene mutation. For this reason, it is not surprising that tea drinkers are much less likely to develop various types of cancer. However, whether kombucha has any anti-cancer effects in people has not been confirmed, and more research is needed.