Kombucha is a colony of bacteria and yeast that is added to green or black tea and fermented. Sounds yummy, right? Actually GT Kombucha is my favorite brand, and most of the flavors are DELISH (although there is one ginger flavor that kinda makes me gag a bit). There has been very little actual scientific studies on the true health benefits of this beverage in the US, but it has been studied in Germany and Russia in the early 20th century into the cold war era as a treatment for cancer and/or a cancer prevention 'medicine'; Germany claims to have verified the treatment and prevention of cancer. In the 1990's when kombucha came to the US, very few studies were done, mostly because no medical companies would make money off of it; people can make their own at home! It has been consumed in mass quantities in China for over 2,000 years, and Eastern medicine weighs heavy stock in its health benefits.
Kombucha is created by growing colonies of bacteria off of one another (very similar to the way that people make their own yogurt). Although it has gotten some bad press as of late because Lindsay Lohan claimed that drinking Kombucha made her SCRAM bracelet go off. Due to the fermentation process, it does have a small amount of alcohol in it, but the labels all state less than 0.5% but after Ms. Lohan's indiscretion (which could NOT be the result of kombucha) most major brands were tested and were found to have above the 0.5% alcohol content and the FDA then declares that an "alcoholic" beverage. So, it is tougher to find than it used to be. Whole Foods used to have a whole array of various brands and flavors have pulled it from their shelves, but I can still find it at my local organic grocery store.
Why is it good for you?
Detoxification: because of all of the enzymes and good bacteria that are present in the beverage, it helps to detoxify your body of some of the bad stuff that we, unfortunately, consume.
Cancer Prevention :(I'm not sold on this as fact BUT...) it had high levels of glucaric acid which has been linked to an increase in cancer remission (but these studies are heavily skewed in that people made MAJOR lifestyle changes and this was only one of them). It is worth a chance though that it can help prevent cancer.
Arthritis/Joint pain: it had high levels of glucosamines which can help to decrease swelling and joint pain.
It is also full of probiotics, anti-oxidants, and can boost your energy and immune system through the detox process.
It can be rather tough to drink at first (the vinegar flavor in some of them can be overwhelming!) but stick with it, and let me know if you feel better....I know I do when I drink it regularly, but I also usually am eating super healthy at the same time!
Yours in Good Health