It’s the trendy health elixir of choice at the moment but what actually is kombucha, and why do you need it in your life?

Kombucha, also known as the “Immortal Health Elixir” by the Chinese, is a drink that’s been around for thousands of years, traditionally made by fermenting sweetened tea with a SCOBY (Symbiotic Culture of Bacteria & Yeast) for a week or more. The end result is an effervescent drink with a slight vinegar taste, a long list of health benefits, as well as plenty of beneficial probiotics and antioxidants. To make it a bit more palatable, commercial kombucha is produced in a tasty range of flavours including ginger, lemon, raspberry and apple.

What are the benefits of probiotics?

Drinking kombucha or taking a good quality probiotic supplement is a great way to help restore the balance of good bacteria in your gut. A whopping 80% of your immune system is located in your gut, which makes having the right balance of good and bad bacteria so important for your overall health and wellbeing. Studies have shown that the friendly bacteria in probiotics can help protect against disease and enhance immune function while improving digestion.

A healthy balance of gut bacteria can even impact the way we store fat, and how we respond to hormones that make us feel hungry or full. Scientists are beginning to understand how our inner ecosystem can affect how we balance our glucose levels, and maintain a healthy weight. In fact, lean individuals tend to have a wider, more diverse range of microbes in their gut than obese individuals.

Detox with antioxidants

By consuming food and drink (like kombucha) which is high in antioxidants, it can help lower your risk of infections, heart conditions and even some forms of cancer. Kombucha, particularly when made with green tea, seems to have a powerful antioxidant effect on the liver.

Antioxidants help to shield your cells from oxidative damage, repairing and protecting the body from chronic disease and inflammation. The human body naturally produces free radicals and antioxidants to counteract their effect, but due to the amount of pollution, and external pressures we are exposed to, it’s hard for our bodies to keep up on their own.

Kombucha is rich in many enzymes and bacterial acids that help detox the body, including glucaric acid. Recent studies have shown that glucaric acid is effective in the prevention of various types of cancer including pancreatic, colon and breast cancer.

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