PODCAST. For a long time, kombucha tea has been popular as an alternative therapy and old gut remedy. Consumers think it will help them live a healthier life. According to a report by MarketsandMarkets, sales of kombucha are expected to grow 25% each year to 2020 making this more than just a trend.
How is the tea made? It’s prepared by placing the kombucha culture in a mixture typically of black or green tea plus sugar and allowing it to ferment. Kombucha makers call this culture “SCOBY,” short for “symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast.” It forms what looks a lot like a mushroom on top of the beverage during the 7-10 days of the fermentation process.
During this time, the bacteria and yeast eat up the sugar in the tea, producing B vitamins, live potentially beneficial bacteria or probiotics, antioxidants and traces of ethanol, a natural by-product of fermentation. It only contains about 30 calories per eight ounces, zero fat and cholesterol and very low protein. Some say it smells like beer but tastes like vinegar or apple cider. Juices or flavors are often added to improve the taste.
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Antibacterial Activity of Polyphenolic Fraction of Kombucha Against Enteric Bacterial Pathogens. Curr Microbiol. 2016 Dec;73(6):885-896. Epub 2016 Sep 16.
Kombucha. Colorado Integrated Food Safety Center of Excellence
Facts About Kombucha, the Fermented Tea Drink. Live Science