Kombucha: The Living Tea

Q: What is Kombucha Tea?

A: You may have heard of kombucha tea on your favorite health news TV show or in a magazine, but the use of kombucha tea may actually date as far back as 400 AD. It’s said that kombucha tea was originally introduced to the Japanese by the Korean physician, Kombu. Kombucha had been used by Japanese Samurais. The Chinese referred to it as an “immortal health elixir.”

Kombucha Tea Benefits Your Wellbeing

Today, kombucha is used all around the world. Many of us have been misinformed and believe kombucha is a type of mushroom. Though this is not the case, the mushroom myth comes from somewhere. Kombucha tea is produced by fermenting the tea using several different micro-bacteria and yeast specimens. These cultures are referred to as “SCOBY” or symbiotic cultures of bacteria and yeast. The SCOBY is actually gelatinous (similar to the texture of mushrooms) and forms at the top of the tea during fermentation. While this may sound unappetizing, this fermentation process is responsible for kombucha tea’s wonderful host of health benefits.

Q: How can kombucha tea benefit my health?

A: Because it’s naturally fermented using several colonies of healthy bacteria and yeast, kombucha tea is a probiotic beverage that supports digestive and intestinal function. It may also help to combat candida overgrowth.*

Your body naturally produces probiotics and enzymes in order to promote internal cleanliness. You can help this body-balancing process by adding more probiotics and enzymes through kombucha consumption or supplementation.

While being rich in B vitamins, amino acids, probiotics and enzymes, kombucha also naturally provides chondroitin sulfate and hyaluronic acid which may aid in joint mobility and cartilage health.

Q: How do I take kombucha?

A: Kombucha is most commonly taken in its liquid (tea) form, but can also be taken in capsule form if you prefer. Many enthusiasts actually make their own from scratch. Aside from drinking kombucha, it can be used in making your own salad dressings, marinades and sauces. In most recipes, you can swap out vinegar for kombucha — as is the case in this salad dressing mix:

Kombucha Salad Dressing

1/4 cup kombucha tea
3/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
3/4 tsp. sea salt
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
Pinch of herbs and spices (you can use your favorites here, but coriander, onion powder and/or ground ginger pair well)

Directions: Combine all ingredients in a jar, close and shake vigorously.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. 

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Vitacost Product Experts

Health & wellness Q & A from Vitacost.com's product experts Matt Albretsen and Ryan Halvorsen. Submit your question at productinfo@vitacost.com

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Health & wellness Q & A from Vitacost.com's product experts Matt Albretsen and Ryan Halvorsen. Submit your question at productinfo@vitacost.com

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