The popularization of more natural and healthy ways of maintaining our health has led to the reappearance of all kinds of foods and drinks used in traditional medicine from different cultures. This is the case of kombucha tea, a drink of oriental origin to which numerous benefits are attributed.
In this article, we will talk about what Kombucha tea is and what its benefits and properties are, but also about the possible risks of its excessive consumption.
Kombucha tea is a beverage made from slightly fermented tea and sugar. Although it is a centuries-old traditional drink from different parts of China, Eastern Russia, and Eastern Europe, we can now buy kombucha tea in almost all supermarkets and even prepare it ourselves at home. Read more: 3 Nutrition Tips
However, although the homemade version of the kombucha may seem the most natural, there have been multiple cases of poisoning due to poor preparation of this beverage or contamination with some pathogens, so the safest option is to buy it in some of our trusted supermarkets.
Thanks to the numerous beneficial properties of kombucha tea, it has achieved a great reputation worldwide. The reason is that it is rich in vitamins, minerals and healthy enzymes that favor the correct functioning of the digestive system and even have benefits for the functioning of the heart and brain.
To be more exact, kombucha tea is sweetened and fermented using a SCOBY. This term is an English acronym for a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast. We could say that the SCOBY is a home for the beneficial bacteria that make kombucha a nutrient and probiotic-rich drink.
The fermentation process of kombucha tea lasts between 7 and 12 days, depending on the ambient temperature and the resistance of the SCOBY. At the end of the fermentation, the bacteria will have eliminated 90% of the sugar. What makes the kombucha is a drink with very low calorie and sugar content. Read more: Tips for preserving food without adding a lot of sugar
Traditional medicine has given this drink innumerable properties of all kinds. However, not all have been tested. Below, we show a series of properties and benefits of kombucha tested and supported by science.
It is a source of probiotics
Like other foods that are very fashionable like kefir, the fermentation of kombucha produces a large number of probiotic bacteria.
Probiotics give our intestines healthy bacteria that improve digestion and gastrointestinal inflammation and even promote weight loss.
Provides the benefits of green tea
Although it can be made with various types of tea, kombucha made from green tea contains a large part of the benefits of this.
Green tea is characterized by containing a large number of bioactive agents known as polyphenols, which are known for their strong antioxidant power.
According to studies the green tea used for kombucha favors the burning of fat and potentiates the burning of calories. It also improves cholesterol levels and helps control blood sugar.
It is rich in antioxidants
Kombucha is distinguished by its antioxidant effects. Antioxidants are substances that fight free radicals that are found in our body; These agents are reactive molecules that can damage the cells of our body.
Although studies have not yet been conducted with people, recent research points to the possibility that kombucha can improve the symptoms of liver diseases thanks to its antioxidant effects on the liver.
It eliminates the bacteria of our organism
The kombucha produced from black or green tea seems to possess strong antibacterial properties.
During the fermentation of kombucha, a substance called acetic acid is produced, which can also be found in other elements such as vinegar and has the ability to eliminate many potentially harmful microorganisms.
According to studies, kombucha tea is used as a compliment in the treatment against infections and fungi of candidiasis.
Can reduce the risk of heart disease
Animal studies show that kombucha can significantly improve the markers of heart disease, such as LDL and HDL cholesterol, although it has not yet been tested in humans is a hopeful area of research.
It has also been shown that frequent consumption of green tea can decrease the risk of developing heart disease, so kombucha produced with green tea can have the same benefits.
Can help control type 2 diabetes
Type 2 diabetes is distinguished by high levels of blood sugar, as well as by insulin resistance.
Some animal research points to the idea that kombucha made with green tea can lower blood sugar levels and improve liver and kidney function.
It could be a protector against cancer
In vitro studies suggest that the high concentration of polyphenols and antioxidants in kombucha can prevent the growth and spread of cancer cells.
Although the specific mechanism of polyphenols as anticancer agents is not yet known, it is hypothesized that these can block the genetic mutation and the growth of cancer cells.
As we mentioned, there are certain controversies surrounding the homemade production of Kombucha tea. Although there are innumerable recipes and the ingredients can be easily purchased, it is recommended to buy the already elaborated kombucha.
If it is not prepared properly, it can give rise to over-fermentation of the kombucha, which can cause serious health problems, to the point that a case of death due to intoxication was registered by ingesting poorly prepared homemade kombucha.
In addition, due to fermentation, kombucha is a slightly alcoholic drink – so while the kombucha that is marketed is not considered an alcoholic beverage because it has less than 0.5% alcohol, homemade kombucha tea can reach up to a graduation of 3%.
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