Gut health is the name of the game. You’ve probably heard by now that your gut microbiome is linked to almost everything you can think of, from energy to illness to mood. That’s because your belly is your core center. It controls the rest of your system. As my friends at Belly Brain always say, healthy belly equals happy mood. Happy mood often means less stress, and stress is the root cause underlying many illnesses and disease (if you ask me, but I’m NOT a doctor). Your gut is responsible for your everyday well-being. And that’s why I love kombucha, because its entire purpose is to serve your gut and keep it happy. Want to know a little more about how that works? Read on for the benefits and what to be cautious of when drinking the beverage.
Kombucha is made by adding specific strains of bacteria to black or green tea and allowing it to ferment for at least one week. Fermented foods are rich in probiotics, so by consuming fermented foods, you’re giving your gut the nourishment it wants and needs to thrive. When it’s thriving, your microbiome sends positive signals to your brain basically telling it you’re safe, secure, and happy, and that message causes your mind to relax. A calm, relaxed mind means less stress and anxiety and more heart-centered flow. Who doesn’t want that? That said, as The New York Times pointed out last week, there are other fermented foods and teas that can offer the same health benefits without as much sugar, which can be a pitfall of drinking some flavored kombucha brands.
Since kombucha has many of the same benefits as green tea, it may help to banish belly bulge. Some experts say green tea speeds up your natural metabolism and helps you burn fat faster. I can’t say that I’ve had this specific direct experience, but I did just drink a cup at Izakaya, and I feel great. My take: kombucha gives you energy, energy motivates you to move more often, and moving is good for your body! A healthy body is good for the soul. As mentioned above, be cautious of the sugar in the kombucha you drink.
Kombucha contains antioxidants that can protect against free radicals. Free radicals damage the cells in our bodies. They take electrons from atoms in the skin, which damages the skin’s cells and DNA, and that destruction speeds up the skin’s aging process. Free radicals are harmful to our skin! Antioxidants bind to the free radicals before they can do damage, thus keeping your natural glow intact.
Consensus: If you like kombucha, drink it in moderation. But if you’re not a fan and are just drinking it for total body benefits, there are other good options out there (like sticking to black or green tea).