Hard kombucha seems to be everywhere right now. (Including my fridge). But are they truly the purveyor of health and wellness that they claim to be?
First of all, what is kombucha?
Kombucha is a fermented tea brewed with tea, sugar and a SCOBY (symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast), which produces bacteria essential to maintaining gut health. As the kombucha ferments it produces a trace amount of alcohol (usually less that 1% alcohol by volume) which allows the bacteria to remain mostly in tract as we drink it, giving our bodies access to the health benefits that they provide.
But, what happens when it is fermented with the intention to produce as much alcohol as a beer, or in some cases more than a beer? Similar to the way we use rubbing alcohol to cleanse a cut to prevent bacteria from growing, alcohol in your probiotic drink can kill strains of bacteria before they can make it into your body. Drinking these for gut health is a bit counter-intuitive.
So, though they aren’t going to make your gut health thrive, they are a better option to reduce the inflammation caused by beer or wine. Beer is made from grains which can be difficult for our bodies to breakdown if were sensitive to wheat or gluten, making us feel full or bloated, and most wines contain sulfates which have been shown to contribute to skin issues, stomach pains and can trigger asthmatic symptoms for those of us with severe asthma.
Remember that prioritizing health and wellness is a lifestyle to be maintained with routine practices and care. There is no magical drink that is going to cure all of your ailments and take your hangover away. Instead of looking for a miracle cure, commit to daily practices that honor what your body needs to thrive.
You can make your own decisions about whether or not you want to try hard kombucha. I personally, find them to be a nice alternative to hard seltzer as far as flavor is concerned. They are light and easy to take on picnic or a beach day and truly do find that I feel better the next day after drinking them when compared to beer or wine.
Nova (pictured above) is one of my favorites, but all three in the photo at the top of this post are pretty damn good.
Have you tried any you like?