As I write this blog post, I am happily sucking down a bottle of GT’s Gingerade Kombucha, which I picked up earlier tonight on a quick grocery run to Three Rivers Market (which I still find myself calling, “the food co-op,” no matter how I try to train myself to use their snazzier, newer name. Either way, it’s a great place.). I have had the occasional bottle of commercially produced kombucha since last summer, when I tried it for the first time, and unlike lots of folks who had to acquire a taste for this fizzy, funky, sour stuff, I liked it immediately, and still do.
As I’ve been sharing on my blog in recent months, I am really trying to change the direction that my physical health has been going since my son died. I am now running, biking (and to be honest, I love riding my bike so much that I tend to prioritize biking over running. I did 7 miles today.) and paying very close attention to nutrition for pretty much the first time in my life. On Friday I will have my first visit to my brand new GP, and will have a full physical exam – from stem to stern – for the first time in three years.
Not surprisingly, I think, I am also doing a fair amount of reading online lately about weight loss, nutrition and health in general. And that’s where I first became aware of the claims that many people make regarding the ways they believe kombucha has improved their physical well being. I’ve run across everything from anecdotal reports of kombucha-as-weight-loss-miracle to stories of kombucha alleviating allergies, IBS, acne, insomnia… you name it. However, there doesn’t appear to be any meaningful science to back these claims up, and in fact, there are quite a few doctors warning that downing kombucha is actually dangerous. All I know for sure is that I enjoy swilling the stuff. Any health benefits would be icing on the cake.
But I am interested to hear from others whether you drink kombucha regularly, and if you do, why? Do you make it yourself or buy it at the store? Do you attribute any specific health changes to kombucha? Has it ever made you or someone you know sick?
Tell me what you think of kombucha – as beverage, health tonic or total snake oil – in the comments below.