Even if you haven’t tried “the immortal health elixir,” you’ve probably heard about kombucha. This fermented beverage has certainly grown in popularity in recent years. However, it’s actually been around for centuries. But what exactly is kombucha? It’s made from black tea and natural sugars. But there’s more to it than just that. Kombucha is great for your health! It contains a healthy dose of gut-healing probiotics. These probiotics work to boost the immune system and improve overall health. Because of this, kombucha benefits include the ability to fight off disease-causing bacteria, manage diabetes, and improve cardiovascular health. Learn more about this popular healthy beverage by reading the list of benefits below!
1. Helps Prevent Disease
Kombucha benefits include the ability to protect the body from a variety of diseases. The powerful antioxidants in kombucha help reduce inflammation. And, when it comes to diseases, inflammation is often the root problem. The antioxidants in kombucha work to reduce oxidative stress in the body that can damage cells. There are scientific studies to back up this claim, as well. These studies have indeed shown that drinking kombucha can be beneficial for many diseases. Thanks to the beverage’s ability to fight off infection and promote healing, this includes diseases such as cancer. (1)
In particular, kombucha may influence the activity of two crucial antioxidants. These antioxidants are called glutathione peroixidase and catalase. Furthermore, kombucha contains isorhamnetin, which is a metabolite of quercetin. Quertecin is linked with a long lifespan as well with major anticancer capabilities.
2. Supports Gut Health
Probiotics are great for the gut! And, indeed, kombucha benefits the gut due to it being a healthy source of probiotics. This, in fact, is the reason many people choose to consume this beverage. Probiotics help restore balance to the digestive system by encouraging the growth of beneficial bacteria. Furthermore, research has shown that kombucha has the ability to prevent and heal stomach ulcers. Kombucha can also help stop candida from overpopulating in the gut. (2)
It may seem counter-intuitive to consume a product that contains bacteria. However, the type of bacteria kombucha contains is called “apathogens.” These help wipe out pathogens, or bad bacteria, that are likely present in your digestive tract.
You should keep in mind, however, that candida overgrowth and other digestive issues can be difficult problems to eradicate. From probiotics alone, you may not see an improvement in your gut health. It’s definitely a trial and error process. Exercise patience and don’t give up. The road to health is often long and complicated. This is especially true considering you are undoing what likely is years of damage.
3. May Help Improve Mental State
Kombucha benefits may also extend to mental health. It contains a healthy dose of B Vitamins, including Vitamin B12. Vitamin B12 plays an important role in increasing energy levels and maintaining mental health. But this goes beyond mere mental health. As you may have heard, there is a connection between your brain and your gut. Research has indeed shown that mental health is directly related to gut health. Furthermore, research shows that depression may be a symptom of leaky gut syndrome. By improving gut health, kombucha can also help improve mental health by minimizing the effects of anxiety and depression. (3)
4. Improves Lung Health
Kombucha benefits lung health by aiding in the detox process. Researchers found that the fermented drink may be a potential treatment for a lung disease called silicosis. This is a condition that develops due to repeated exposure to silica particles. Silicosis can negatively affect your lung health in various ways. For example, it can lead to an increased susceptibility to tuberculosis, lung cancer, as well as pulmonary heart disease. Additionally, studies have shown that inhaling kombucha may help treat lung diseases caused by inhalation of dangerous material. (4) However, the recommendation is that you drink, and not inhale kombucha.
5. Works as an Antibacterial Agent
Studies have shown that kombucha benefits include antibacterial effects against staph, E. coli, salmonella and other types of harmful bacteria. The live cultures in kombucha work to destroy bacteria that causes infections. (5)
Some bacteria leads to food-bourn illnesses. While many of these are treatable, some of them lead to dangerous conditions. For example, some strains of salmonella can lead to Guillian-Barré syndrome. When this occurs, the immune system attacks the nervous system. The good bacteria found in kombucha, however, can help destroy the bacteria that leads to this and other complications.
6. Helps Manage Diabetes
You need to be careful with this one! Some research denotes kombuncha consumption is not helpful in managing diabetes. However, it all depends on what kind of kombucha you are drinking. In managing diabetes, you absolutely want to avoid high-sugar foods and beverages. Many store-bought kombucha drinks are loaded with added sugar. Be selective, or make your own to avoid this. Once you find a low-sugar option, kombucha benefits indeed include the ability to help manage diabetes. The antioxidants in kombucha help alleviate diabetes symptoms. Black tea has natural anti-diabetic effects. The fermenting process helps further improve liver and kidney health, which many diabetics struggle with.
7. Improves Cardiovascular Health
Kombucha benefits include improved cardiovascular health. Research, while limited, has shown that the fermented drink helps naturally lower trigylceride levels. The antioxidants in kombucha help unclog arteries and naturally regular cholesterol levels, to improve heart health. This may help protect against heart attacks and other heart-related complications. Furthermore, should a heart attack occur, kombucha may, at the least, help to maximize survival.
8. Improves Liver Health
Thanks to the antioxidants it contains, kombucha benefits include the ability to maintain a healthy liver. By aiding in the detoxification process, kombucha helps filter harmful compounds from the liver. The drink’s antioxidants may also help protect the liver from damaged caused by an acetaminophen overdose. (6) Protecting the liver is absolutely vital to your health. This is because the liver is the organ that helps filter harmful compounds that you may ingest.
Whether it’s to help your liver, manage diabetes, or improve heart health, keep in mind you still need to watch sugar intake. Read labels carefully, and if in doubt, you can make your own kombucha at home. This will allow you to control sugar content while still reaping the benefits kombucha has to offer.