What is Kombucha?

green tea kombuchaKombucha is fermented tea. It has been known in China for at least 5,000 years. However, some sources claim it originates from Korea or Mongolia. Anyway, it is believed that Kombucha travelled from Asia through Russia and started being brewed in Europe in XIX century. 

It was forgotten during World War II, due to the general deficiency of tea and sugar but started to be widely popular again in the 1960s when scientific research proved the health benefits of Kombucha.

The interesting thing is that the habit of drinking Kombucha has been maintained in Ukraine and Russia during the whole XX century. They know the good stuff, the Eastern European folks, don’t they?

If you want to read more about the history of Kombucha, I strongly recommend kombuchakamp.com.

The story about brewing Kombucha in Eastern Europe surprised me. I had never heard of it when I lived in Poland.  Maybe it is because I was much more interested in other kinds of fermented beverages, but more likely it just wasn’t that popular to brew Kombucha.

kombucha scoby
Kombucha Scoby

Fortunately, I joined the community of Kombucha lovers eventually when I got a beautiful piece of Scoby from my friend a few weeks ago.

I thought that Scoby is just a pet name for the Kombucha starter, but I found out that it is actually the acronym for Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast. Despite the full name, it looks cute. It is also very nice to touch, kind of sensuous, I would say. That’s due to the cellulose matter covering it.

I will give you the instructions for how to brew Kombucha in my next post. For now, let me explain why I enjoy drinking it.

I switched from drinking strong black coffee in the morning to green tea many years ago because coffee wrecked my stomach. However, recently, I noticed that also green tea is a bit harsh when drunk straight after waking up. Additionally, I became a bit obsessed with balancing my hormones when I had entered the pre-menopausal age.

The caffeine intake, when the hormones are still in the ‘sleep mode’, is a crime for the body. It completely disrupts the natural process of the adrenal glands activation and thus destroys the whole hormone balance.

Therefore, I believe that Kombucha is the perfect first-in-the-morning drink. It contains 2-3 times less caffeine than regular tea, which is not that scary, but still more than hot water with lemon, which doesn’t work for me at all.  Drinking Kombucha on the empty stomach does wonders for the gut. I will spare you the description of those wonders, just try it yourself.

I also drink Kombucha with meals, because it tastes better than pure water. I read somewhere that it helps to digest heavy meals, which sounds quite logical when you think of all the bacteria and low pH.

You can even add Kombucha TO your food, but I haven’t gone that far yet, though.

If you live close to Dublin, I would be happy to give you a piece of my Scoby, just contact me on Facebook, Twitter or by email or sign up for one of my events.

Otherwise, see you in my next post!

PS. (June 6, 2016) See this article on Nourishing Plot blog with the mind-blowing scientific data about Kombucha!


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