The Health Benefits Of Kombucha
Gut health is the trending topic of the moment, with our gut microbiome taking centre stage. Recent studies are increasingly pointing to the gut as the base for all things health. The digestive tract contains trillions of species of bacteria and fungi; outnumbering human cells by an astonishing 10 to 1. Our gut microbiome is the terrain or ‘environment’ within the gut, and what we eat has the biggest impact on what organisms are present. The gut microbiome influences health by managing inflammation, supporting the immune system, absorbing nutrients and has even been shown to affect mental health. A natural and effective way to support the microbiome is to include enzyme-rich foods into your daily diet, with kombucha being an excellent choice! Kombucha is known for its enzyme-rich properties, but what exactly is it? And why is it so good for us? Read on to find out.
WHAT IS KOMBUCHA?
Kombucha is a fermented black (or green) tea which is thought to originate as far back as the Qin Dynasty (221 BCE) in China. Records suggest that Emperor Qin Shi Huangdi was the first to make and drink this delicious functional food. The carbonated beverage has been used in Traditional Chinese medicine for over 5000 years in which principles outline that every plant in nature has its own unique therapeutic health benefits. Kombucha is referred to as the ‘elixir of life’ in traditional Chinese Medicine, and we would have to agree!
Kombucha is produced by fermenting black or green tea with water, sugar and a SCOBY, which is essentially a live culture made from beneficial bacteria and yeast. SCOBY is what gives this drink its enzyme-rich punch whilst also naturally protecting it from contaminants and dust.
Fermentation occurs in two stages;
- Stage 1, or F1 is the primary fermentation stage which allows for the beneficial bacteria to populate and thrive, to produce all the health benefits mentioned below.
- Stage 2, or F2 as it is known, is the stage to add natural flavourings and carbonate the drink to add a few bubbles. Kombucha fermentation can take anywhere from several days to several weeks to complete.
The fermentation process produces a fizzy, refreshingly potent drink with a moreish kick to it.
KOMBUCHA HEALTH BENEFITS
As mentioned, kombucha is an enzyme-rich drink. Digestive enzymes are essential for helping us to break down and absorb the nutrients in our food. They also help support our digestive system to metabolise those nutrients to use throughout the body, giving our overall health a massive boost!
Acetic acid is produced from the fermentation process which has been shown to actually kill bad bacteria strains in the gut, along with lowering inflammation and potentially controlling blood sugar levels.
The fermentation process also produces b vitamins which are vital to boost our energy levels, support the immune system and helps the body’s ability to detox.
When made with green tea, kombucha is rich in antioxidant polyphenols and other bioactive compounds, mopping up free radicals and helping to lower inflammation in the body.
KOMBUCHA AT THE SOURCE
Here at The Source, we take great care to ensure that the suppliers we work with produce ingredients of the highest standard with sustainability in mind, and Ko Kombucha is no exception.
Ko Kombucha is brewed in small batches, ensuring the highest quality with each product. All products are low in sugar and contain organic ingredients where possible. Plus they are naturally flavoured with tisanes, spices herbs and flowers (AKA no nasties!).
We stock some of their best loved flavours Blueberry, Strawberry & Original – perfect for the hot summer days ahead.
All Ko Kombucha is made with organic green tea and black tea, making them an excellent antioxidant rich choice. We also have Kombucha on tap here at the Source, so please do pop in to sample for yourself or alternatively, contact us for more information.
Please do tag us in your pictures on Instagram @thesourcebulkfoodsireland if you attempt to brew your own kombucha or try one of ours, we’d love to see them!