Before we delve into the top 10 Kombucha Benefits first a word from out sponsor the FDA… Shout out to the FDA and Lawyers: Information about the kombucha’s health benefits is for educational purposes only. These statements about kombucha’s health benefits have not been evaluated by the FDA. It is not medical advice, nor is it intended to replace the advice or attention of heath-care professionals. Whew…
Quick, SMILE. Great, now you are fully prepared to learn about the benefits of drinking kombucha mushroom tea (and other uses later). OK – So what exactly are the health benefits of kombucha? I’m sure many of you were brought to GetKombucha.com to learn more about kombucha benefits because you heard about all the amazing health benefits. Whether it was your friend who lost some weight, stories printed on commercial bottles claiming that it helped with cancer treatment, or recently the attention kombucha is getting in the media as a natural source of energy.
Below are the benefit categories I’ll cover:
Does kombucha benefit cancer patients?
Just a note, lot’s of people have been talking about kombucha and how it can help with cancer. Though Dave has never said that it cured, or even treated, his mother’s cancer; he does say it helped her during chemotherapy of the cancer cells. You can read her more here.
Both Dave and his mother have been a huge inspiration for me in my quest!
Are the kombucha tea benefits just hype?
However, for every ten drinkers reporting how amazing this stuff is, there are one or two that say there is no scientific evidence and that it’s Bologna. As a kombucha company, it would be great to claim 101 health benefits of kombucha mushroom and kombucha tea without any research. However ethically we didn’t think that was appropriate, plus so many other places are just putting up everything and the kitchen sink when it comes to the benefits of organic kombucha.
We thought we’d do something special here. Below you will find 3 sections that are all dedicated to sharing my kombucha health benefits list in the most transparent way possible.
My personal benefits drinking kombucha tea and using kombucha products
The first is my personal experience with the benefits of drinking kombucha. It discusses how I first discovered it, my initial experiences with kombucha, and any associated benefits I continue to have by brewing and drinking kombucha. I feel very comfortable speaking about this because it is my personal experience and personal opinion, so I know it is true for me.
Top 10 real raw organic kombucha benefits list
The second is a survey on our customers and their observations with kombucha. Once we began providing kombucha cultures and brewers, within weeks we received unsolicited testimonies. That encouraged us to send out a survey to document other personal experiences. We feel it is doing a service to other kombucha drinkers or for those who are about to begin drinking kombucha to discover what other drinkers are reporting as benefits. This does not mean that you will have the same or different results, but it is a wonderful way to gauge the reported effects of this drink. Before, the alternative was just unscientific claims by some people who don’t even drink kombucha!
How does kombucha benefit the body?
The final third section will discuss the general opinion of how kombucha is able to benefit so many different ailments. And why different drinkers enjoy different affects.
My Personal Story
A long time ago, I discovered the wonder of Kombucha while enjoying some lunch with a wonderful friend in a vegan restaurant and I was hooked. The taste was nothing I had ever experienced before. As soon as I drank it, I felt it go down into my stomach (kind of like drinking iced cold water on an empty stomach on a hot summer’s day). My friend was explaining to me that it was a mushroom drink (which we know from class one that it’s not), and all the associated benefits. I thought it was all mumbo jumbo, but I didn’t care this stuff tasted AMAZING! plus it had about 1/5 the calories of soda but it still had that fizzy carbonation of a soda. The meal was done and about an hour passed by and that’s when I realized it. I didn’t have any acid reflux! This was nuts considering I have been on acid reflux medicine for years (Prilosec, Protonic, Acifex, you name I’ve taken it and paid up to $166 bucks a month for it). Not only that, I also realized that I went to the bathroom about ten minutes after the meal. I also didn’t have that “Just eaten let me sleep now like it’s Thanksgiving” feeling.
In a word, I felt clean. That’s the only way I can describe it. I thought it was a fluke, so I bought a few more bottles over the next couple of days, and every time (with exception to the 2 apple pies I got at a famous fast food restaurant, nothing can save you from that), I felt CLEAN. However, I was a little turned off by the price of Kombucha at our local markets (some places charged up to 5 Bucks a Bottle!) and decided to enter the wonderful world of brewing my own kombucha tea with a kombucha culture. After brewing hundreds of batches, and thousands of tea bags, do you know what I discovered? Well do you? I am a computer typed message, so I can wait if you are still in thought. I discovered that brewing Kombucha IS EASY and FUN! That’s right, if you can bake a cake, you can brew kombucha. Not a made-from-scratch, super epic “grandma’s fomous cake”, I’m talking about the pour & mix variety. I also began sharing the drink with my friends and family. Soon, friends all around were stopping by just to say hi as an excuse to get a glass of my drink to get the same kombucha health benefits. Well as the saying goes:
Give a man a fish, he will eat for a day; teach him how to fish, he will eat everyday, and the rest is history.
We’ll teach you how to fish in the next session. The reason I drink kombucha tea is because I reap the many of the kombucha benefits outlined as follows:
- Kombucha Tastes Amazing. With 1/5th the calories and sugar of soda why wouldn’t you try it?
- Kombucha Cured My Acid Reflux. I have not bought any acid reflux pharmaceuticals in over 5 years!
- Kombucha Makes Me Feel Really Really Good. Simply put, drinking kombucha tea makes me feel clean. I digest my food better, it gives me a little boost, both in my mind and body and it helps me poop and pee (yep I said it). It also really comes in handy after a heavy night of eating and drinking.
Top 10 Kombucha Benefits
Everyone wants to know… what are some benefits of drinking kombucha? I know for myself it was pretty apparent that it was helping my digestion and acid reflux, but the interesting thing was that several other kombucha drinkers were experiencing different kombucha health benefits. There was a trend, but I wanted to know exactly what these were and what were the most common benefits amongst REAL kombucha tea drinkers. For me it is more important talking to other kombucha drinkers than just relying on what a dude in a lab coat analyzed from a petri dish (not knocking labs or lab coats for that matter as science is really cool to back up your hunches and lab coats are damn sexy if accessorized correctly.. what?)
Well, rather then wait till a big drug company in the US was ready to fork over millions of bucks to research this stuff (ahem, by now you guys know that you can make kombucha at home for like pennies a serving so don’t think the drug companies will be having too much interest in funding a study on kombucha health benefits for a looooooong time), I decided to simply ask our customers and readers of our Kombucha newsletter. The original survey was back in 2006 (5 years ago!), we have since updated the survey for 2011 and we continue to ask and survey our subscribers!!
Together we are compiling the biggest REAL experiences on the internet. We will be doing another round of surveys soon, so be sure to sign up for our newsletter to be included. NOTE: Some people may experience some, all, or none of these and some kombucha drinkers have reported some slight kombucha side effects. Stay tuned for a kombucha video discussing both the Kombucha Health Benefits and Kombucha Side Effects and what you can do if you do happen to experience a kombucha side effect… here’s a hint; drink MORE WATER… I’ve done the research! Also, sorry guys, the list got a little hard to maintain in terms of percentages as time went on so they are not in any particular order, however all have been reported in high enough numbers to be substantial… I am going to look into using a simple facebook survey on our facebook Page so that it will keep count of everything… be sure to join our facebook page to get access to the always updating Kombucha Benefits Information!)
Reported by GetKombucha’s 9,300+ Kombucha Subscribers in Bold. I then add my two cents and a dime to why this might happen… again this is my insight of my research and personally drinking, making, and teaching kombucha tea for over 5 years.
1. Kombucha Improves Your Digestion.
Kombucha is a probiotic which contributes to healthy digestive flora in your gut that can help break down foods and absorb the good stuff, while evacuating the bad stuff easier. Kombucha also is a alkalize forming food when ingested. Kombucha also contains sever beneficial organic acids that have been attributed to better digestion. (side note, if you want a double does of digestion… trying making chai kombucha! With chai kombucha benefits from both the gentle digestive herbs like carodmom and ginger, but with an upgraded delivery method thanks to kombucha!) Here is a great source regarding probiotics from http://www.webmd.com/digestive-disorders/tc/probiotics-topic-overview
Probiotics are bacteria that help maintain the natural balance of organisms (microflora) in the intestines camera. The normal human digestive tract contains about 400 types of probiotic bacteria that reduce the growth of harmful bacteria and promote a healthy digestive system. The largest group of probiotic bacteria in the intestine is lactic acid bacteria, of which Lactobacillus acidophilus, found in yogurt with live cultures, is the best known. Yeast is also a probiotic substance. Probiotics are also available as dietary supplements.
2. Kombucha Helps You Lose Weight
Going one step further with the digestive benefits of kombucha, the better we can digest our food (both absorb and evacuate), the better chance we have at losing excess weight. This weight loss is usually experienced only for people that are over weight. In fact we have seen the opposite in people that are under weight, as kombucha will also help these people absorb their food easier. A final thought though on the real reason why so many drinkers have reported weight loss, is that these drinkers are replacing their sugary sodas, coffees, and other soft drinks with delicious, organic Kombucha and water. That alone will show a huge success in weight loss.
3. Kombucha Reduces Your Stress Levels
Kombucha is usually made with tea, which contains the component: Theanine. Theanine promotes alpha wave (the in the zone waves) production in the brain as well as increases serotonin levels. Many other kombucha drinkers also mention that if you drink a little kombucha at night you will sleep better. For me I have not experienced this on a consistent basis (sigh). Now, you could take a theanine supplement or simply drink tea (the green kinds usually have the highest amount of theanine), but as I have discussed before, kombucha will “super charge” any individual component due to its synergistic delivery system.
4. Kombucha Gives You More Energy
As mentioned above, kombucha is usually made with tea which means that in addition to the happy relaxed effects of theanine, it also contains the happy “in the zone” effects of caffeine. Typically the drink has about a third the amount of caffeine that is found in coffee, and through the fermentation process the amount of caffeine decreases even more, however I would imagine that the caffeine does contribute to the reported energy. However there are several other things going on. Kombucha also has a natural supply of Vitamin B6 as well as other B Vitamins.
Kombucha also cleanses and detoxes the liver, so another explanation could be that it is not “giving” you energy, but rather “restoring” your body to its natural state, which is an abundant energetic body. Finally, the small amount of sugar that is found in kombucha is already broken down (sucrose gets broken down into glucose and fructose during the fermentation process). When consumed after exercise or high stress levels, it will act like a Gatorade on steroids… uh, except that it is all natural and the vital minerals that kombucha also provides (we tend to sweat these out), are from natural sources like tea, etc instead of synthetics.
5. Kombucha Increases Your Immune System.
So, hopefully by now you are beginning to see a synergy going on. Let’s put it all together because words like Immune System and Detox have been over used in my opinion to just say to cover all bases, but if you are digesting your food better, cleaning out your liver, reducing the amount of sugar intake due to drinking kombucha over soda, juice, etc, lowering your stress levels and getting micro nutrients delivered in a super charged way — obviously you are going to be and feel healthier. Harvard has recently done some studies on this topic and weigh in with probiotic and building an immune system:
There are hundreds of different species of bacteria in your digestive tract, which do a bang-up job helping you digest your food. Now researchers, including some at Harvard Medical School, are finding evidence of a relationship between such “good” bacteria and the immune system. For instance, it is now known that certain bacteria in the gut influence the development of aspects of the immune system, such as correcting deficiencies and increasing the numbers of certain T cells. Probiotics are good bacteria, such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, that can safely dwell in your digestive tract. You’ll now find probiotics listed on the labels of dairy products, drinks, cereals, energy bars, and other foods. Ingredients touted as “prebiotics,” which claim to be nutrients that feed the good bacteria, are also cropping up in commercially marketed foods.
Another interesting observation is that I tend to get sick less during cold and flu season… now to be fair I live in California so it usually isn’t so cold here, but I am curious to see what the direct effect is of kombucha’s probiotics on people who have been taking antibiotics their whole life (perhaps we will be doing another survey soon!).
6. Kombucha Relives Constipation
Digestion = Poop Easier; Acetic Acids = Pee Easier. BUT – the missing ingredient in both equations is…. (drum roll, or hand drum, please)… W-A-T-E-R. In fact water will help all of these reported benefits. A good rule of thumb is drink equal amounts of water for kombucha. This is in addition to the recommended 8 glasses a day (which by the way is only a general recommendation and would vary greatly based on individual, and of course their diet and lifestyle… more on that on another post). So if you have 16oz of kombucha a day… a rule would be have an additional 16oz of h2O a day. And the best time to do it is right after you drink the kombucha.
7. Kombucha cures your hangovers
I wish I could say this benefit is something I experience every time I drink… ha ha for me though, drinking less is still the best cure for a hangover — but, if you can follow the kombucha protocol of drinking equal parts kombucha and h2O, kombucha should help… that and a good immune system. The reason why is plenty: kombucha cleanses the liver, it also has glucose and electrolytes which help blood sugar levels for as well as hydration… when drank with h2O! In other articles we will show you how to infuse kombucha with your favorite spirit. Hey, if you’re gonna drink you mine as well add some stuff to you beverage that makes it taste better and is better for you… can you say Kombucharita?
8. Kombucha Cleans Your Liver
Kombucha contains gluconic acid which continues to break down to Caprylic acid a potent anti-fungal and can immensely help those suffering from Candidiasis (fancy name for Candida). Gluconic acid also works in the liver, possibly as part of a detoxification pathway and why it is believed Kombucha can help the body detoxify from heavy metals and toxins. I have also found that when taken with milk thistle and other already known and more common liver cleansing herbs it will assist the liver even more. And I know I sound like a broken records (or tape cassette), but all this must be accompanied with water!
9. Kombucha Makes Your Skin Look Younger and Heals Eczema
When we surveyed we did not have this as a question, but my guess would be it is two fold, both ingesting kombucha and applying the drink (and/or culture), externally to the skin. When applied to the skin it will act as an astringent cleansing out and balancing oily skin. If you do decided to use the culture, set it a aside as your designated external culture and do not use it for making kombucha tea that will be ingested. Drinking kombucha will benefit the skin, in my opinion, from the liver cleansing effects.
10. My favorite kombucha benefit, kombucha strengthens and restores the color of your hair.
Though there were some peps that claimed kombucha grew back their hair, the majority of people that have noticed Kombucha hair benefits was that kombucha restored their hair color and strengthened their hair. Again, this is from both internal and external use. I created an instructional kombucha hair recipe video on how to make a kombucha hair rinse.. to this day it works better than any fancy shmancy over priced salon product.
Kombucha Benefits Explained
“The wide variety of complaints relieved by Kombucha is almost not comprehensible. But it is explainable on the basis that Kombucha does not target a specific body organ but, rather, influences the entire organism positively by effecting a stabilization of the metabolic situation and the detoxifying effect of its glucuronic acid. In many, this leads to a heightened endogenic defense capacity against those toxic influences and environmental stresses which inundate us from many sides. The result is the invigoration of a damaged cellular metabolism, and the restoration and firming up of one’s well-being. -Gunther W Frank (leading authority on kombucha tea, author of “Kombucha: Healthy beverage and natural remedy from the Far East”)”
In other words, drinking kombucha lets your body heal itself. In my opinion this is the best general answer, however I would like to add the following. Kombucha, though acidic by itself, is alkalizing to the body when ingested. pH balance is extremely important, and more so than ever when you consider that coffee, caffeine, sugar, and all refined grain products (bread, crackers, cakes, etc), are all Acidic. I also have read the benefits of Apple Cider vinegar in healing with numerous ailments, one of which being Acid reflux. Kombucha has many vinegar properties (though it is NOT apple cider vinegar, if over fermented, it resembles it). If that is true, GREAT, I most certainly would enjoy drinking an iced cold kombucha beverage over apple cider vinegar! There are some other benefits with Kombucha (specific hangover applications, advanced weight loss, curing athletes foot, etc), but you guys are probably Kombucha’d Out today, so we’ll save it for an Advanced Class. Some people may experience some, all, or none of these benefits. Other kombucha tea drinkers have reported some slight kombucha side effects. Stay tuned for a kombucha video discussing both the kombucha health benefits and kombucha side effects and what you can do if you do happen to experience a side effect… here’s a hint; drink MORE WATER!
Great Work Guys! Till next time… Happy Brewin’ Dave :)