Today I am going to introduce a unique product to you and also educate about one of the latest ‘fads’ in healthy foods: Kombucha. I will then review the starter culture (more on what this means later) of a very fine company in India – Cultures Market (Spoiler alter: Their starter culture is amazing!)
What is Kombucha? What is SCOBY?
Kombucha is an ancient tea based fermented beverage used as a functional food (foods which have therapeutic benefits/medicinal effects) originated in China. It is made from a starter pack which contains some kombucha tea and a SCOBY. SCOBY stands for symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast which uses the nutrients in the starter pack and added sugar to grow and ferment the medium, turning it into what we call Kombucha. Medium used is the brewed tea which we add to let the fermentation occur in it. Because we use some black tea in this medium, the finished product is called Kombucha tea. Fermentation brings a ‘fizziness’ (due to natural carbonation) into kombucha tea and we are left with a somewhat tart, somewhat sweet, somewhat fermented fizzy iced tea which we call Kombucha tea. SCOBY feels like a mushroom upon touch and a lot of people also call Kombucha as Mushroom tea.
How will Kombucha help me?
Kombucha tea has numerous probiotics which will help with the lining of flora in the gut and improve gut health by improving (or restoring) the balance between the good bacteria and bad bacteria. This will in turn, positively impact the immune system, inflammatory response and digestion of food along with absorption of nutrients. Kombucha also produces lots of antioxidants which are lost during making tea powder and hence is an excellent detoxifying drink as well.
I have previously written a blog on gut health and how does gut health go wrong which you can check here: Kefir by Cultures Market: A review
In addition to these probiotics, drinking about 250mL of Kombucha counts as a considerable (although secondary) source of:
- Vitamin B12
- Niacin or Vitamin B3
- Thiamine or Vitamin B1
- Vitamin B6
- Riboflavin or Vitamin B2
Can I make it at home? How is the quality of SCOBY by Cultures Market?
While Kombucha is available in health stores and is trying to stir the market of fizzy drinks in the west, it is yet to attain those levels of popularity in India. However, the good news is you can make your own Kombucha at home. You can buy the starter culture from Cultures Market, which supply one of the best quality of SCOBY and starter pack. I purchased Kombucha along with Kefir grains (review for which can be found here:Kefir by Cultures Market: A review and I have made about ten batches till now. All have been excellent. You can buy Kombucha SCOBY by Cultures Market here: https://culturesmarket.in/contact-us/
Making Kombucha at home is very easy and doesn’t require a lot of cooking skills either. You can see how to make Kombucha at home on my blog How to make Kombucha at home.
Who would benefit the most from drinking Kombucha?
Because of so many benefits which target inflammation, gut health and oxidants, Kombucha would be an excellent supplement to eating the right food and following healthy lifestyle. Because of its unique fizzy taste, almost everybody can consume Kombucha to reap its benefits. In particular, Kombucha could especially be of benefits to people suffering from:
- Inflammatory conditions, especially those pertaining to the gut
- Candida/yeast in the gut and people with sugar toxicity
- Regular drinkers due to weak liver and need to drink.
- Weak immunity in general
- Gut problems pertaining to digestion
- Liver problems due to fatty liver, alcohol abuse, or too much sugar
- Weak energy levels due to lack of B vitamins
Kombucha is an excellent addition to your diet and consuming about 250mL Kombucha on frequently will help most people. Consuming Kombucha along with a nutritionally rich diet and some exercise could really step up the ‘achieving good health’ process and is very highly recommended. As always, the products of Cultures Market are of highest quality and Kombucha SCOBY is no different. I strongly recommend you get your Kombucha from them and once you have enough left, share the joy with others by donating them with SCOBY.
Note: I do not have any association with Cultures Market and views expressed are my personal.