Believe it or not, I get this question all the time. Kombucha is a fermented tea that has been around for thousands of years. It's tart but also sweet - kind of like a combination of lemonade and sweet tea. It's usually carbonated, not big bubbly burpy type carbonation like beer. Kombucha fizz is soft, effervescent, sort of tingly - similar to champagne. You can find kombucha in grocery stores, farmer's markets, kombucha bars - basically anywhere. I wouldn't spend the time brewing it if it wasn't really, really good. Because it's fermented, there is a trace amount of alcohol in kombucha - about the same amount as mouthwash or cough syrup. However, some people brew and dial up the alcohol. I don't, but it's a good idea to ask about the ACV if you're drinking home-made or bar & restaurant kombucha.
Reasons I drink it:
- My gut has gotten used to it and I feel like it's healthy for my system. I can tell a difference on days that I skip the kombucha.
- A few years ago I decided to either quit or cut back on alcohol. So, I quit and felt so much better, I've just never gone back to it....but I still want to have something to 'drink' when I'm in the kitchen, or with friends, or to relax at the end of the day. Kombucha fits the bill because it's got a similar feel as alcohol, but without the ethanol (trace amount I'm ok with).
It curbs my appetite:
- Also, a few years go I lost over 60 pounds and have kept it off, in part because of kombucha - MAYBE. I'm not saying kombucha made me lose weight. I did that with diet & exercise. But, kombucha definitely makes me feel full, and I usually have a few glasses of it mid-afternoon with a little snack, then by whatever time dinner would be - I'm simply not hungry. I might have something small, probably vegetarian and low fat, low calorie - but for me, Kombucha somehow curbs my appetite.
- Some research suggests that kombucha is high in vitamin B12. I don't know if it is or not but I take 10,000mcg of B12 in a supplement each morning and it gives me a little energy boost. When I have my few glasses of kombucha in the afternoon, I feel that same boost. Not like caffeine, just a bit of a bump.
Why I brew it myself:
- Money. Kombucha isn't cheap. At about $3 per bottle, and I drink at least 2 bottles a day, over time that adds up. I can brew it myself for .52 cents per "bottle" or 16 oz serving. No brainer. But, if I was working full time and had a busy family..hmm...not sure I would do it. In that case, I would probably do a kombucha keg. They're frequently sold by name brands and also kombucha bars. A keg would be less than buying a case every week. We have family that does this and I sometimes wonder if that's something I should go to. I might someday.
- Control over the ingredients. I like my kombucha to be a bit sweeter than the store-bought stuff. I also want to control the flavorings and use things from our garden.