Kombucha

 
 
 

 Kombucha

 

 What is Kombucha?

Kombucha has been called the 'miracle cure-all'. It's a pleasant, probiotic drink full of useful constituents. It  is safely and easily made at home, just as it has been by many cultures over many generations, and drunk for enjoyment, health and vitality right around the world.

Kombucha (sometimes called kombucha tea) is a fermented drink made from sweet tea and a kombucha culture which is the live substance which is put into the sweet tea to ferment and convert it into kombucha tea. The culture is commonly known as kombucha mushroom, though this is a misleading term as it's a symbiotic  mix of live bacteria and yeast. Better and more accurate, it is a "symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast", so known by its abbreviation 'SCOBY'.

Sugar is used as part of the recipe but it is not used as a sweetener. The sugar is broken down and converted into different components of the finished drink. After fermentation it no longer tastes of tea, in fact you can even change the taste and use different natural flavours!


 Why is Kombucha good for you?

Kombucha can work with your body to boost its natural ability to fight sickness and disease as well as bring a healthy balance back to your metabolism and organs. Because it has been around for so long, many researchers have spent time investigating the sometimes quite astonishing results from this natural remedy. 


I discovered the following information on several websites. Research has shown kombucha tea to contain:
Lactic Acid: Found in Kombucha in its most potent form L-lactic(+). Lactic acid is essential for the digestive system. Interestingly, it is not found in the tissues of people with cancer, and its lack has been established as indicating susceptibility to cancer.

Acetic Acid: Its main function is to inhibit harmful bacteria. Acetic acid [found in vinegar] is used as a preservative because of this action. It is also what gives Kombucha that 'kick' to its smell and taste.

Malic Acid: Is also used in the body's detoxification process.

Oxalic Acid: Encourages the cellular production of energy and is a natural preservative.

Gluconic Acid: Is effective against many yeast infections such as candidiasis and thrush.

Butyric Acid: Is produced by the yeasts and when working with gluconic acid, helps combat yeast infections such as Candida.

Nucleic Acids: Work with the body aiding healthy cell regeneration.

Amino Acids: A group of acids which are the building blocks of protein. Your muscular system is made of proteins. As a group they have many benefits including building cells and repairing tissue, they also form antibodies to combat invading bacteria & viruses.

Enzymes: Are proteins that act as catalysts, speeding the rate at which biochemical reactions proceed. Therefore they boost the actions of other health giving components within the Kombucha and your body.

Kombucha also contains vitamin groups B and C, beneficial yeasts and bacteria.

Another site gave even more details:The Kombucha fungus needs to live in a solution of tea and sugar exposed to oxygen. The metabolic by-products of the process, via tea and sugar, include Gluconic and Glucuronic acids, the L-lactic acid (+) (dextrogyral), Acetic acid, Carbonic acid and Vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, Folic acid and various enzymes. Usinic acid produced (a dibenzofurane derivative) is antibacterial and partially antiviral. Acetic acid bacteria produced are strongly antagonistic to streptococci, diplococci, flexner and shigella rods. 0.5% to 1% alcohol is produced as well. (Glucuronic acid, C; chondroitinsulfat acid, the basic substance in cartilage; mukoitinsulfat acid for the vitreous of the eye and heparin and lactic acid which benefit the colon). 

How much do I drink? Are there side effects?

A few people may experience some detoxification at the start (as the body releases toxins), so it's suggested that you start with small amounts and work up.  Many people drink a wine-glass full (150ml) three times a day. That's 3 litres a week, though many people I am in contact with drink more!

How do I make kombucha?

Its so easy!  Basically, using aseptic techniques (easier than it sounds), you add kombucha SCOBY and Kombucha starter tea to a special blend of sweetened tea in a glass container.  Cover, wait a week, and hey presto: there's your first batch of kombucha to drink!  You will have produced more SCOBY and kombucha tea to start your next batch or two, and so on. I give full instructions with every Starter Pack I sell.

Still unsure? Come along to a practical workshop to be initiated into all the rites associated with the satisfying production of your own brew. See details below.    

 

How do I buy kombucha?

You can buy your Starter Pack of kombucha tea and SCOBY from me (5), but p&p is another 5 if I need to post it to you as the liquid weighs heavily and is awkward to pack! It also means a special trip to the Post Office for me as the package doesn't fit into a post box.  Does a friend also want one?  I'll send both together for just 7 each.

I also sell the kombucha tea.  I use standard wine bottles so you get about 70cl. The cost is 2, or 3 for flavoured kombucha.  Please bring your own, clean wine bottle with screw cap, otherwise you will be charged 50p for the bottle.  My kombucha tea is an active probiotic drink, not a dead, preserved version.

 

Sunday 19th November  Kombucha: Elixir of Life Workshop   10-12.30pm     6 (Concessions available)

 

NOTE: this workshop will be repeated at intervals.  Register your interest to be included at a later date. 16th March has already been set. 

 

delicious!

 

Kombucha (kom-boo-cha)I was introduced to kombucha by a friend who explained that she and her husband had been using it for 20 years and never had a cold or flu in that time.  It's a probiotic that you brew yourself from a sugary tea, and the micro-organisms convert the tea to health-promoting active constituents.  And it tastes WONDERFUL!  I dislike tea intensely, but love this fizzy brew. This is a thoroughly practical workshop, introducing you to kombucha; demonstrating all aspects of producing it yourself in your kitchen using common utensils; and the chance to taste several brews. Advanced kombucha workshops are also available.

 

 

 

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Copyright Carrie Thomas 2005. All rights reserved.