Everything You Need To Know About Kombucha Tea
Wondering what all this fuss about kombucha is? We're proud to share with you its potential gut health benefits, our fermentation process and simple food recipe.
What Is Kombucha? Our Guide To All Things About This Popular Fermented Tea.
What Is Kombucha, Really?
Kombucha is a fermented beverage drink that has been around for nearly 2,000 years. Yes, you heard that right. 2,000 years.
It was first brewed in China around 220 B.C., later on in Japan and then in Russia.
Kombucha became popular in Europe in the 20th century and sales in the United States have been on the rise because of consumers’ interest in its potential health benefits.
At Health-Ade, we are committed to bringing you a beverage with only simple ingredients: a culture of yeast and bacteria, sugar and a combination of black and green tea.
We mix these ingredients and let them ferment for a few weeks. During this time, the sweetened tea undergoes fermentation, resulting in a slightly sweet and fizzy drink that we all know today as kombucha.
Sometimes, this beverage is referred to as “mushroom tea”. Spoiler alert: Kombucha does not have mushrooms, but rather a colony of bacteria and yeast called S.C.O.B.Y (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast). Don’t worry, these bacteria are harmless! In fact, they are good. We rely on them for the fermentation process, which is the same process that helps preserve cabbage as kimchi and turns milk into yogurt.
Still curious about kombucha fermentation? Let’s dive in!
The Fermentation Process
Simply put, fermentation is the process during which the activity of friendly bacteria, yeasts (probiotics), and enzymes converts the sugar in sweetened tea and turns it into tasty and slightly bubbly kombucha. Due to the fermentation process, a small amount of alcohol (less than 0.5 percent) is produced. However, the alcohol content is not enough for you to feel its effect, so most kombucha is still sold as non-alcoholic.
How Do We Make Kombucha At Health-Ade?
Health-Ade follows the traditional ancient recipe for kombucha: 1 cup of sugar per gallon of tea and a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast (S.C.O.B.Y).
Our fermentation process takes time. It can take up to 4 weeks for the bottle you would buy at a store to be ready! But good things take time, and we let nature do her job so that we can bring you the best tasting and highest quality kombucha!
We ferment in super small 2.5-gallon glass jars, which give us great control over the quality of our brew and prevent plastic and metal leaching.
This is also very similar to the way you would brew kombucha at home - just on a larger scale. We know that you are busy, so we do the work and waiting for you.
Is Kombucha Tea Actually Good For You?
As you may know, kombucha is a traditionally fermented beverage, not a supplement, tonic or elixir.
Thanks to the fermentation process, kombucha contains healthy acids and probiotics, which are especially good for your digestive system. Since a healthy gut is key to a healthy body overall, probiotics in kombucha can help you feel good and refreshed.
Not convinced? We will break it down for you!
Our body has trillions of bacteria. Probiotics are often called the good bacteria because they can:
- Balance your "good" and "bad" bacteria so that your body can function optimally
- Replace “good” bacteria when you lose them, for example after you take antibiotics or are ill
In addition, they may also:
- Provide relief when you feel bloated
- Help promote a healthy immune system
Kombucha also contains B vitamins which can give you energy, boost hydration and promote cell growth.
Even though most research done on kombucha has been on animals, researchers are exploring the benefits of fermented foods in human studies as well. But at least, kombucha is a better beverage choice than soda or other sugary drinks because it’s lower in caffeine, sugar and calories.
Does Kombucha Have a Lot Of Sugar?
The sugar content in kombucha differs from one brewer to another because there are many factors that affect the final composition.
These factors include the source of the S.C.O.B.Y., the amount of sugar in the original batch, tea concentration, the fermentation time and the temperature used. Any change in the fermentation conditions can affect the final product.
The good news: Most big kombucha brands don’t have a high sugar content in their products because the companies are aware that their consumers are health conscious. However, in order to make low sugar kombucha, sugar is required because the yeast consumes the sugar to ferment the tea and create acid.
In addition, kombucha makers often opt for organic evaporated cane juice, rather than white sugar or artificial sweetener. Compared to juice boxes and soda, kombucha still has significantly less sugar.
Consider the comparison below:
- Health-Ade the Original Kombucha per 12 fl oz: 60 calories, 12 grams of sugar
- GT’s Original Classic Kombucha per 16 fl oz: 50 calories, 12 grams of sugar
- Wonder Drink the Traditional Kombucha per 16 fl oz: 120 calories, 28 grams of sugar
- Tropicana’s Original Orange Juice No Pulp per 16 fl oz: 220 calories, 44 grams of sugar
- Coca-Cola per 16 fl oz.: 187 calories, 52 grams of added sugar
As you can see, even the most sugary kombucha with 21 grams of sugar still has a lower sugar content than a soft drink or fruit juice.
Next time you crave a sweet, low-calorie beverage, reach for kombucha!
Can I Replace My Cup Of Coffee With Kombucha?
There is a small amount of caffeine in your kombucha. Why? It is because kombucha begins with black or green tea. While the fermentation process reduces the tea’s natural caffeine content, about one-third of the caffeine still remains in the liquid. Health-Ade Kombucha contains anywhere between 8mg-15mg of caffeine per serving depending on the flavor.
There is much less caffeine in Health-Ade Kombucha than your cup of regular coffee. So if you’re looking to cut back on your caffeine intake, kombucha is a great option. Or you can simply enjoy it at night without worrying that it will keep you up like coffee would.
How We’re Different At Health-Ade
We make it the way nature intended, always giving you the BEST TASTING and HIGHEST QUALITY kombucha you can buy.