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What Is Kombucha?

Expertly reviewed by Chris Icamen · Dietetics and Nutrition

Written by Hello Doctor Medical Panel · Updated Oct 05, 2022

    What Is Kombucha?

    What is kombucha? Many people believe that kombucha helps treat all sorts of chronic health problems. However, human studies on the effects of kombucha are few and the evidence for its health effects limited. In contrast, there is ample evidence for the benefits of tea and probiotics, both of which are found in kombucha. If you decide to try homemade kombucha, make sure it’s properly prepared. Contaminated kombucha may cause more harm than good.

    What is Kombucha?

    Limited evidence suggests kombucha tea may offer benefits similar to probiotic supplements, including promoting a healthy immune system and preventing constipation. Kombucha is thought to have originated in China or Japan. Proponents claim it helps prevent and manage serious health conditions, from blood pressure to cancer.

    It is produced by adding particular strains of bacteria, yeast, and sugar to black or green tea and letting it ferment for a week or longer. Because of the way that bacteria and yeast change the liquid during this process, kombucha is also referred to as “mushroom tea.”

    This blob is known as a scoby. It is a symbiotic colony of living bacteria and yeast that may be used to brew fresh kombucha. Acetic acid, traces of alcohol, and gases that cause it to be carbonated are all produced during the fermentation process. 

    Here are the top 8 health advantages of kombucha. 

    1. Probiotic source

    Although there is yet no proof of kombucha’s probiotic effects, a lot of bacteria also thrive in the mixture, and it contains a variety of lactic-acid bacteria species that may serve a probiotic purpose. Probiotics give your gut the good bacteria it needs, and these bacteria can help with digestion, inflammation, and even weight reduction.

    2. Similar advantages to green tea

    Green tea-based kombucha has many of the same plant chemicals and presumably offers some of the same advantages. Green tea has bioactive substances, including polyphenols, which serve as potent antioxidants in the body. 

    Studies have shown that drinking green tea consistently can help you lose weight, regulate your blood sugar levels, enhance your cholesterol levels, and more.  Additionally, studies demonstrate a decreased incidence of prostate, breast, and colon cancers among green tea consumers (10, 11, 12),

    Green tea-based kombucha may provide many of the same health advantages as green tea itself, including blood sugar regulation and weight loss.

    3. Antioxidants

    Studies on kombucha have shown that it has anti-bacterial, antioxidant, and anti-diabetic properties, as well as the ability to lower cholesterol levels, support the immune system, and encourage the liver’s detoxification process. Antioxidants are compounds that protect your body from free radicals, which are reactive molecules that can harm your cells. 

    Kombucha seems to have antioxidant effects on the liver, especially when brewed with green tea. 

    4. May lower risk of heart disease

    Heart disease is the world’s leading cause of death, and studies on rats show that kombucha can significantly improve two heart disease markers, “bad” LDL and “good” HDL  cholesterol, in as little as 30 days. However, tea, especially green tea, protects LDL cholesterol particles from oxidation, which is thought to contribute to heart disease. 

    Even more importantly, tea (especially green tea) protects LDL cholesterol particles from oxidation, which is thought to contribute to heart disease. In fact, green tea drinkers have up to a 31% lower risk of developing heart disease, a benefit that may also apply to kombucha.

    5. Kombucha may aid in type 2 diabetes management

    A 2018 study found that kombucha has the potential to significantly lower blood sugar and hemoglobin a1c levels as well as increase insulin production. Type 2 diabetes affects over 300 million people worldwide and is characterized by high blood sugar levels and insulin resistance, so incorporating kombucha into your diet may help you manage your condition.

    Kombucha made from green tea is likely to be even more beneficial because green tea itself has been shown to reduce blood sugar levels. A review study of nearly 300,000 people found that green tea drinkers had an 18% lower risk of developing diabetes, although more human studies are required to investigate these findings.


    Kombucha is a probiotic-rich tea with numerous potential health advantages, including improving digestion, removing toxins from the body, and boosting energy. It is also supposed to strengthen the immune system, aid in weight loss, and fend against high blood pressure and heart disease.

    You can buy it or create it at home, but make sure to do so carefully because tainted or excessively fermented kombucha can have fatal consequences for your health. 

    When compared to the numerous studies on tea and probiotics, both of which are present in kombucha, human studies on the effects of kombucha are scarce, and the evidence for its health effects is scant. If you decide to try making your own kombucha, make sure it is properly prepared because contaminated kombucha may do more harm than good.

    Learn other Nutrition Facts here


    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

    Expertly reviewed by

    Chris Icamen

    Dietetics and Nutrition

    Written by Hello Doctor Medical Panel · Updated Oct 05, 2022

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