Hectic work schedules and prolonged working hours in artificial, dry, air-conditioned environments rule our lives so much these days, that the need to stay hydrated has been reiterated more than a million times.
The thumb rule says that one should drink sufficient glasses of water to keep the body hydrated. Easy it may sound, but it is not quite pleasurable to our taste buds, so we all look for fancy delectable substitutes. While sodas and fizzy drinks have topped our beverage preferences for a long period, now people have become conscious of their choices, switching to healthy alternatives from conventional unhealthy ones. One such soothing substitute, a mildly fizzy, fermented drink, Kombucha tea is a satiating beverage made from bacteria, yeast, sugar, and tea. Primarily concocted from a specific ‘SCOBY’ culture, a short form for ‘symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast, sunset yellow in colour and a tad bit sour, this drink is also called tea mushroom, tea fungus, or Manchurian mushroom. Consuming probiotic-rich beverages has proven beneficial to improve gut health besides boasting many health benefits. Laden with antioxidants, Kombucha tea is delicious, diuretic, and probiotics.
Health Benefits Of Kombucha
Probiotics work by helping the body maintain a healthy community of microorganisms. Kombucha tea, a potent gut-friendly drink has many wellness benefits, and helps to alleviate the following health disorders:
Aids Digestive Health
As a potential source of probiotics, a purported wellness benefit of Kombucha is its ability to balance good bacteria in the gut. Kombucha has prominent lactobacillus, a common type of probiotic, that aids to relieve gastrointestinal anomalies such as irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel diseases, and constipation. Moreover, by stabilizing the digestive tract, Kombucha also helps prevent severe stomach infections.
Promotes Mental Health
Kombucha tea has been linked to alleviating symptoms of depression. 90% of serotonin, also called happy hormone is produced in the gut that plays a key role in augmenting mental health and mood regulation besides stimulating sexual desire. Since the body's serotonin and dopamine are produced in a healthy gut, Kombucha effectively helps to combat signs of depression.
Kombucha contains antioxidants that help fight molecules in the body that can damage cells. This plays a major role in promoting liver health and reducing mild to chronic liver inflammation and reducing the risk of liver disease.
How To Make Kombucha?
While Kombucha comes across as an intricate fancy beverage, the great news is that it can be made at home by fermenting sweetened green or black tea with store-bought Kombucha. During the fermentation process, yeast breaks down the sugar in the tea and releases friendly probiotic bacteria. The drink turns fizzy because it tends to become carbonated after fermentation. Great for the gut, Kombucha has been brewed for many centuries.
Wondering how to go about making Kombucha tea? Here is a step-by-step recipe to make this sassy tangy beverage right from the scratch.
10 cups of clean water
1/4 cup sugar
2 tsp loose-leaf black tea
1 cup unflavoured, unpasteurized store-bought Kombucha
2 pods cardamom
1-inch cinnamon stick
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1-inch ginger- optional
1 piece star anise- optional
In a heavy bottom pan, bring water to boil
Add sugar and stir well until it melts
Add the black loose-leaf tea
Add fennel seeds, star anise, cloves, cardamoms, cinnamon, ginger
Allow the spices and tea leaves to come to a full boil
Allow decoction to cool
Pour out the tea into a glass jar
Add the Kombucha on top
Seal the jar with a muslin cloth or paper towel
Let the mixture ferment at room temperature for about 7 days
Note: When the SCOBY is about 1/4-inch thick and reaches a balance of sweetness and tartness, it is ready to make Kombucha tea.
Made with a few very basic ingredients, this great gut-friendly drink has many wellness benefits. The lactic-acid bacteria present in this rids your body of toxins and boosts your energy, strengthens your immune system, and aids weight loss. Consuming this beverage also hydrates your skin.