Kombucha: 3 tips for preparation & 8 effects of the superfood

In Asia, the healing effects of kombucha have been known for a long time. Kombucha has also become a popular soft drink in Germany. We will explain the effects and production of the tea drink to you.

What is Kombucha

Kombucha is a fermented tea made using a kombucha fungus. The so-called kombucha mushroom, tea mushroom or in its scientific name Scoby ensures that the sugar is converted into ethanol or carbon dioxide during the alcoholic fermentation of the drink. This makes the drink slightly alcoholic . The values ​​vary between 0.5 and 2 percent.

The kombucha mushroom consists of a mixture of different acetic acid bacteria and yeast fungi and its consistency is reminiscent of gelatine. In tea, it builds up on the surface of the beverage, where it thickens over time. The color of the mushroom depends on the tea and can range from pink to dark brown and light gray.

Grow your own kombucha mushroom (Scoby).

You can buy the kombucha mushroom used to make the tea drink online or grow it yourself. This is usually associated with little effort. All you need to form a scoby is a tasteless kombucha tea . This is placed in a jar with a large opening. A cotton cloth or a coffee filter is placed over this and everything is secured with a rubber band so that the air can only get into the container through the cloth or the filter. Now let the tea rest for about two weeks.

After the first week, the first yeast should slowly form, which over time will grow together to form a large kombucha fungus. Before you can remove it, however, it should reach a certain thickness of about half a centimeter . To ferment new Kombucha, simply brew the desired amount of any tea, sweeten it and add the Scoby. After about two weeks, the kombucha should be drinkable.

Make Kombucha yourself: A recipe

There are numerous ways to make kombucha yourself. Some people prefer black tea to make kombucha, others prefer green tea or herbal tea . Still others use fruit tea . Opinions also differ on the amount of starter liquid that should be added to the tea. We will explain to you how to make kombucha tea correctly.

You only need four ingredients to make Kombucha:

  • Zucker
  • Tee
  • Scoby
  • Starter liquid or kombucha

First you mix about one liter of tea with four tablespoons of sugar . Of course you can also mix the water with the sugar first and add the tea later. Black tea is traditionally used. But you can also use green tea, fruit tea and herbal tea. Now let the tea cool down to room temperature before adding 150 to 250 milliliters of liquid . The starter liquid simply refers to the tasteless kombucha that the Scoby was bred with. Pour this liquid over the tea and add the Scoby.

Now cover the container with a cotton cloth or coffee filter and fasten everything with a rubber band. The Scoby must be able to breathe and should therefore not be sealed airtight. You now put the tea in a dark place , for example in the cellar. After a week you can check how the kombucha is developing. Fine threads should have formed from the fungus by now.

The fermentation time of kombucha can vary. While it sometimes takes 14 days in winter for Kombucha to be made from the tea, a week can be enough in summer. Before consuming the drink, it is advisable to sieve the kombucha so that a clear liquid is produced and there are no longer any parts of the scoby in the drink. The kombucha is ready to eat.

Preparation of kombucha

To ensure that the fermentation of Kombucha runs smoothly, there are a few things to consider. Although the preparation requires little effort, a number of factors can influence the result. We present the individual factors.

maintain hygiene

When preparing Kombucha, it is important to ensure sufficient hygiene. The fermenter should be clean and disinfected, as should any other surface the Scoby comes into contact with. Do not use conventional cleaning products for this, but rinse the container with boiling water. It is also important to wash your hands thoroughly before preparing the drink so that no bacteria get into the drink in this way either.

If the bacteria and yeast fungi of the kombucha fungus come into contact with other bacteria, this can significantly impair the quality of the kombucha or even promote mold growth. The health-promoting effects of kombucha are thus lost and consumption can even be harmful.

Avoid metal

When preparing it, you should make sure that the Scoby does not come into contact with metal. Metal can have a negative effect on the kombucha fungus and harm it. That’s why you should use wooden or plastic utensils for stirring and sieving . The vessel in which you ferment your kombucha should also not be made of metal. It is better to use a glass jar .

Storage of Kombucha

The storage of the kombucha also has a significant influence on the quality of the drink. For example, temperature and space play a significant role in the fermentation of kombucha. Kombucha likes warm temperatures . The storage room should therefore have a temperature of around 23 degrees. At temperatures above this value, fermentation proceeds even faster. Cooler temperatures can delay the fermentation process. However, temperatures that are too warm can damage the kombucha again, as the microorganisms can get out of balance.

The storage location also plays a role in the fermentation of Kombucha. It should be kept away from harmful environmental influences such as smoke and steam . It should also be protected from insects by keeping a sufficient distance from plants. Food can sometimes promote mold growth. Here, too, the Kombucha should be stored at a distance.

Effects of Kombucha

Kombucha has some powerful ingredients that can have a positive impact on human health. The content of the kombucha varies depending on the type of preparation. The type of tea as well as the origin of the kombucha fungus and the type of sugar can influence the nutritional value of the kombucha.

In general, many valuable ingredients can be found in Kombucha. These include some bacterial and yeast strains , important organic acids such as glucuronic acid, acetic acid and lactic acid. There are also various enzymes that are vital, numerous minerals and trace elements such as zinc, iron and magnesium and important vitamins . We will explain the effects of kombucha to you.

For a healthy intestinal flora

Kombucha is best known for its healthy effects on the intestinal flora. It contains important probiotics that support a healthy intestinal flora. Since these are otherwise mainly found in yoghurt and other dairy products, the drink is particularly interesting for vegans who avoid dairy products and other animal-based foods.

Kombucha can also have a slightly laxative effect. The main reason for this is the acetic and lactic acid it contains. Similar to psyllium and linseed , kombucha can support healthy digestion and contribute to a healthy lifestyle.

To detoxify the body

Kombucha is also said to support detoxification of the body . For example, the drink is suitable for supporting a detox , in which toxins are to be transported out of the body. The glucuronic acid contained in particular should support this process. Scientists suspect that the acid can intervene in detoxification processes. It is used, among other things, to treat rheumatic diseases.

Among other things, kombucha can also help with weight loss and thus rid the body of excess pounds. The drink can reduce cravings and thus promote a healthy diet. Here’s how to lose weight in a healthy way. However, with its ten calories per 100 milliliters, the drink should not be consumed excessively. Water is a healthy and low-calorie alternative. Here’s how much water you should be drinking every day.

To strengthen the immune system

Kombucha can strengthen the immune system. This in turn is due to its beneficial effect on intestinal health . The gut plays an essential role in the immune system. Intestinal bacteria are important, among other things, for a healthy expression of the immune system . A healthy intestinal flora with sufficient intestinal bacteria can strengthen the immune system, while an unbalanced intestinal flora can weaken the immune system. Adequate intake of probiotics through food is essential to create a healthy balance in the gut. Kombucha can be a good source of probiotics here alongside yogurt and other dairy products.

In addition, kombucha is said to have a slight antibacterial effect. This is also due to the content of acetic and lactic acid bacteria. This effect can also support the immune system, especially if a bacterial infection is already present. The vitamin C it contains can also have an antioxidant effect in the body and protect against free radicals that can damage cells. These are formed, for example, due to excessive UV radiation and similarly harmful environmental influences.

Important B vitamins

Kombucha contains numerous vitamins. In addition to vitamins C, D , E and K , its diverse B vitamins are particularly noteworthy. The drink contains vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6 and B12 . Since the body can only store a few B vitamins, they must be ingested through a balanced diet. They play a decisive role in the body, especially in metabolic processes and in generating energy .

lack of B vitamins can have serious consequences for the skin, nervous system, heart and circulatory system and many other body organs. Because B vitamins are primarily found in animal products, vegetarians and vegans can be deficient, but people without dietary restrictions can also be deficient in B vitamins. Kombucha can be a good source here and support the daily intake of B vitamins.

Arthritis prevention

Kombucha can prevent arthritis. The body can convert the glucuronic acid it contains into glucosamine , which is used, among other things, to treat moderate osteoarthritis of the knee. Kombucha also provides important polysaccharides and glucoproteins that can optimally support the joints.

For cancer prevention

A study found that the glucaric acid contained in kombucha can reduce the risk of cancer. Among other things, the consumption of foods containing glucaric acid should contribute to reducing the risk of cancer. Kombucha also contains the secondary plant substance polyphenol and vitamin C. These substances have an antioxidant effect and can thus protect against cell damage. This can prevent the formation of cancer cells and thus reduce the risk of cancer.

For more energy

Kombucha is also said to provide more energy and have an encouraging effect. This is due to the caffeine content of black tea, which is traditionally used to prepare kombucha. Kombucha also contains iron , which also has a positive effect on the feeling of energy. Similar to matcha and other types of green tea, the uplifting effect remains constant and lasts for a longer period of time – in contrast to coffee, which has a quick but only short-term effect.

For vegans

Kombucha is an ideal soft drink for vegans. It not only supplies the body with important probiotics but also with important B vitamins , which are otherwise mainly found in animal foods. Because vegans avoid animal-based foods like milk, eggs, meat, fish, and any foods containing these ingredients, they need to get adequate vitamins and minerals from plant-based sources.

Probiotics in particular are difficult to absorb in this way. Only a few plant-based foods, which are often difficult to integrate into the daily diet plan, can provide probiotics. This includes kombucha, which can be a good source of probiotics for vegans, for example, along with sauerkraut and apple cider vinegar.

Buy kombucha

Kombucha is now available in some well-stocked supermarkets and drugstores . You can get both the normal kombucha tea and a spritzer with kombucha. The kombucha mushroom or skoby is mainly available online. There are various suppliers who offer the mushrooms for sale. In terms of price, these are usually between 8 and 15 euros . Sometimes there are even kombucha mushrooms in organic quality . These can be priced a bit above the standard price.

If you want to benefit from the health-promoting effects of kombucha, it is best to prepare the tea drink yourself. Industrially produced kombucha can contain fewer microorganisms, as these can die off during preservation. In the case of home-made tea, these are usually not lost, since there is no preservation here. The tea should therefore be consumed as soon as possible.

 

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