Kombucha, the most popular drink in alternative medicine goes by many names: “Life elixir”, tea mushroom, stinking water… Even though it’s been used for thousands of years, its popularity in the modern world grew over the past ten years. People who’ve been consuming it regularly claim that it has improved their regulation of sleep, helped in weight lost, eased their digestion, has strengthened the immune system and prevented certain cancers.
Kombucha is created by fermenting bacteria and fungi, achieved by adding sugar and green tea to the mixture. It contains sugar, B vitamins, antioxidants and small amounts of alcohol due to fermentation. It has a “hard” and sour taste, and smells like vinegar which doesn’t make it pleasant for some people. But it can be camouflaged by adding it in juice.
The preparation needs special conditions. First of all, the kombucha needs to be grown in clean environment, requires certain temperature and low pH. Secondly, everything that comes in contact with kombucha needs to be washed with detergent first (even your hands) to prevent contamination. It is most recommended for kombucha to be grown in jars used in household as food storage.
It is risky to prepare it at home because if it is unpasteurized and raised in non-sterile conditions, there is little risk of infiltration of harmful bacteria in the mixture. That’s why it is recommended to buy it from health stores.
There are no clinical trials done on animals or humans to prove positive or negative effects. Everything that’s been reported is from personal experiences. Its popularity is thanks to the probiotic composition of bacteria which according to many claims, improves digestion and strengthens the immune system. The daily dosage shouldn’t surpass 120 grams. Also, it should be noted that pregnant women, elderly and people with weakened immunity should not drink this drink.
Consuming this drink is optional, but always be cautious not to overdose. If you can’t stand its taste, keep in mind that most of kombucha’s ingredients can be found in yogurt, sour milk, and kefir.