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I have been drinking kombucha tea for about 2 1/2 months and have found it to be an amazing drink. It's not a tea in the traditional sense that you steep teabags or whatever.

Evidently the reason why this is so good for acne, psoriasis, rosacea, etc...is because it populates the small and large intestine with good bacteria. Kombucha tea is also fantastic for liver health as well. I've read tons of testimonies about how good kombucha is for the skin. I've also experienced firsthand how good kombucha is for the skin. My skin is looking better and better all the time.

I'll provide a coupla links. Everything you want or need to know is provided in the links. The main investment, for anyone interested, is the kombucha culture, which is not that expensive. The average cost to make a gallon of kombucha tea is only a coupla bucks.

http://www.earthcalls.com/kombucha/index.shtml

http://www.nutrasanus.com/kombucha.html

http://w3.trib.com/~kombu/FAQ/part02.html

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No problem. Just wanted to pass it on. It's cheaper than any probiotic but probably 100 times more effective. biggrin.gif

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I'll say. I drink these little probiotic things every morning (Yakult if you've heard of them) and they are so expensive. Hopefully, I can trade them in for this tea. biggrin.gif

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Give it a try Ness and let us know what you think. I never recommend something if I don't really endorse it and am thoroughly impressed with it! eusa_dance.gif

You do have to make a few purchases...but they are pretty cheap.

The one big expense may be something to warm the tea in the winter time (small heating plate) when the house temperature is 69-72 degrees. The warmer the temperature, the quicker and better the tea can ferment. The tea will not ferment below 72 degrees, I think. We keep our house at 75 degrees in the summer and we are letting it ferment for 8 days and then it is perfect.

My whole family is drinking it.

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Yes SJ, I try to get as many fermented foods as possible. I like Kimchee more than sauerkraut though...and admittedly, don't take in as many fermented foods as I should. As far as the kombucha tea....you can make as much as you want at any time (we are fermenting 3 gallons right now) and save the culture for the next time you want to use it. It's very simple!!!

BTW...I'm off all the probiotics now that I'm on Kombucha. wink.gif

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Thx for that info!

Is it true that you have to add sugar to the green tea or whatever you use to make it though? ninja.gif

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RESULTS: No clinical studies were found relating to the efficacy of this remedy. Several case reports and case series raise doubts about the safety of kombucha. They include suspected liver damage, metabolic acidosis and cutaneous anthrax infections. One fatality is on record. CONCLUSIONS: On the basis of these data it was concluded that the largely undetermined benefits do not outweigh the documented risks of kombucha. It can therefore not be recommended for therapeutic use.

Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd. 2003 Apr;10(2):85-7. Kombucha: a systematic review of the clinical evidence.

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The diabetics who drink Kombucha just let it ferment a day or two longer than normal just to make doubly certain that there are no sugars that havn't been converted.

I know that I don't even drink tea in the morning anymore. The Kombucha wakes me up and gives me plenty of energy. It's an amazing drink.

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RESULTS: No clinical studies were found relating to the efficacy of this remedy. Several case reports and case series raise doubts about the safety of kombucha. They include suspected liver damage, metabolic acidosis and cutaneous anthrax infections. One fatality is on record. CONCLUSIONS: On the basis of these data it was concluded that the largely undetermined benefits do not outweigh the documented risks of kombucha. It can therefore not be recommended for therapeutic use.

Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd. 2003 Apr;10(2):85-7. Kombucha: a systematic review of the clinical evidence.

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RESULTS: No clinical studies were found relating to the efficacy of this remedy. Several case reports and case series raise doubts about the safety of kombucha. They include suspected liver damage, metabolic acidosis and cutaneous anthrax infections. One fatality is on record. CONCLUSIONS: On the basis of these data it was concluded that the largely undetermined benefits do not outweigh the documented risks of kombucha. It can therefore not be recommended for therapeutic use.

Forsch Komplementarmed Klass Naturheilkd. 2003 Apr;10(2):85-7. Kombucha: a systematic review of the clinical evidence.

rolleyes.gifrolleyes.gifrolleyes.gif

For every "negative" study, there are 20 more "positive" in the links I gave.

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You know this just occured to me. If fermented foods are a good source of probiotics, then what if Asians have great skin, health etc, not (soley) because of Soy (which should be fermented) but because they continuously consume foods that help with digestion, nutrient metabolism, etc. Of course, I do realize each culture has their own health problems, but it's just a thought.

Consumer perception of food has changed through history. Until the 20th century, the food situation of the world was always problematic. Food shortage could occur any time even in the affluent societies. Therefore, man mostly lived for food, and we may call this earlier period the “survival food age.� In the 20th century access to food no longer was a problem in most of the affluent societies, but time was short for work and leisure. People wanted to save time cooking and obtaining food. Consequently convenience food became the major item in the food market. Now, we all notice that the 21st century is the “functional food era.� Health oriented food and nutraceuticals are major concerns of today’s consumer.

Fermentation technology has adapted itself to social demands. During the survival food age, fermentation was used mainly for food preservation and condiments production. In the convenience food age, it was used for flavor production and other ingredients for industrial mass production of food. The 21st century is called the era of tailor made goods satisfying personal demands, and together with the health benefit demands, fermentation technology finds new challenges in the market. Many of the traditional fermented foods are receiving new attention for their health promoting or disease preventing/curing effects. Scientific evidences for their physiological functions are accumulating and the technologies enhancing the beneficial effects are developing rapidly by using modern biotechnological and genetic engineering techniques. Some of the recent developments and future prospects are discussed below.

Lactic acid fermentation for probiotics

Yogurt and sour milk products are well known in Western society as probiotic food. Similar products made with rather inexpensive raw materials are found in many indigenous fermented foods around the world. Korean Kimchi is one of the examples. It is made from vegetables lightly salted (ca. 3%) and fermented by lactic acid bacteria, mainly Leuconostoc mesenteroides. The lactic acid bacteria grown in kimchi could survive in gastric acid and bile juice reaching to the large intestine (Lee 1997). More important is that kimchi contains various functional components either originated from the ingredients or formed during fermentation as shown in Table 1. The same beneficial effects can be expected from African cereal gruels like ogi and uji, Nigerian gari, and Asian vegetable foods like dhamuoi in Vietnam, dakguadong in Thailand and burong mustala in the Philippines and acid fermented seafoods mixed with cereals (Lee 1994). In addition to the probiotic effect, these vegetable products have excellent prebiotic function.

Combining Western milk fermentation technology and Eastern cereal processing skills led to the creation of fusion foods like soybean yogurt and rice yogurt. Risogurt is an example of lactic acid fermented vegetable drink studied in Korea made from the mixture of rice and soybean protein (Mok,1994). Many of the vegetable yogurt products are found in markets of USA and Japan.

The antimicrobial activity of some lactic acid bacteria against Helicobacter pylori, which is known to cause stomach cancer, is well applied to acid fermented milk beverages and highly accepted by the consumer in Korea (Park et. al. 2001). Anti-diarrhea effect of lactic acid bacteria like Lactobacillus acidophilus is enhanced by protein coating (Chung et al. 2001). The freeze dried bacterial cells coated with protein are added to food for preventing diarrhea and other health benefits, and this market is increasing rapidly.

Soybean fermentation for cancer and degenerative disease prevention

The physiological function and health benefit of soybean is widely recognized today. The blood cholesterol level reduction activity of soybean protein and its hydrolysate and the pseudoestrogenic effect of soybean isoflavones are experimentally proved. In addition to flavor formation, soybean fermentation increases the digestibility and the nutritional value, and also produces health benefit functional compounds (Lee 2001b).

Soybean fermentation for soybean sauce and paste, Korean chongkukjang and Japanese natto production involve the process of enzymatic hydrolysis of protein to make peptides and amino acids. Some peptides in soybean sauce and paste are known to have ACE inhibition, antithrombotic and anti-cancer effects(Shin et. al. 1995, Shon et. al. 1996, Kim 1995). Fermentation with molds, Aspergillus and Rhizopus, converts glycoside form of isoflavones, daidzin and genistin, to aglycones, which have higher potency of estrogenic effect. Production of mucous polysaccharides and enzyme kinase during bacterial (Bacillus) fermentation of soybean is related to the fibrinolytic and immune modulating activity of chongkukjang and natto (Lee et.al. 1991, Sumi et.al. 1987). By enforcing these components through molecular breeding of the microorganisms involved and novel fermentation skills and improved downstream processes, numerous health oriented food products are produced and also under trial in East Asia and will be launched to the world market in near future.

The advantage of mixed culture fermentation

Industrial yogurt production in the West and soybean sauce production in the East were achieved by purely isolated starter culture techniques. However, many of the traditional fermentation starters in the East are naturally fermented mixed culture system. The consumer in their taste and aroma often prefers the traditional fermented products made by the naturally fermented starter culture. The deep and bountiful aroma of Korean rice wine, chongju, and the sharp, strong flavor of Korean soybean sauce, kanjang, are more preferred by Korean people than those of industrial counter parts. The anti-cancer activity of doenjang made from Korean traditional mixed culture starter meju was reported to be higher than that of the industrial product made from koji. The physiological characteristics of microbial strains isolated from traditional fermentation starters and their interactions for growth and biosynthesis of functional compounds are under investigation. More studies on the interaction of different species of microorganism in a fermentation system are needed. Computer aided analysis of microbial interaction will make this sort of study possible and manageable.

Safety issue of fermented products

Since fermentation makes raw food materials edible without cooking, the risks of hazardous microbial contamination always exist in fermented food especially naturally fermented traditional foods. The uneven distribution of salt in lactic acid fermented fish products and contamination of Aspergillus flavus in traditional starter cultures for rice wine and soybean sauce may result in severe food poisoning incidences (Lee 1989, Lee and Lee 2002).

On the other hand, most of the traditional fermentation methods have their own inbuilt safeguard mechanisms. The food infectious and poisoning microorganisms contaminated on the vegetables and other raw materials of kimchi are killed within one week of fermentation period mainly due to the acid formation and bacteriocin production (Lee 1997). Also, large amounts of nitrate and secondary amines in vegetable products are reduced by fermentation (Lee 1986). The importance of fermentation technology for the improvement of hygienic situation of needed region, where cold-chain system is not well established, was discussed at the FAO/WHO Workshop on the Assessment of Fermentation as a Household Technology for Improving Food Safety held in December 11-15, 1995, Pretoria, Republic of South Africa (WHO 1996).

Conclusion

Fermentation technology has confronted new challenge in the era of functional food with its efficient biosynthesis potential. Research for useful strains from traditional fermented foods continues worldwide and relevant information is accumulating. Exchange of knowledge and skills of fermentation technology of the West and the East will accelerate the technology innovation and new product development. Considering the importance of fermentation technology in the era of functional food, the public sectors and international bodies should pay attention to the relevant R&D efforts of academic institutions and industrial research groups. The R&D support of national and international funding organizations should include the following research priorities.

1. Nationwide search for useful microbial strains from indigenous fermented products and characterization of their physiological properties.

2. Establishment of a global network on fermentation technology and microbial strains and starter culture information.

3. Studies on the mixed culture fermentation and the interaction of microorganisms in fermentation system.

4. Evaluation of physiological function and health benefit mechanism of the metabolites obtained during fermentation process.

5. Evaluation of safety of fermented products, the microorganisms involved and the metabolites.

6. Evaluation and dissemination of fermentation technology for the improvement of hygienic condition of developing countries. http://seafood.ucdavis.edu/iufost/lee.htm

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SJ, I had read where there was a bad batch of Kombucha because the people who were fermenting the culture were doing it in a clay pot. A lot of heavy metals leaked into the batch and caused problems for the consumers. If you do it in a glass container, (like millions of people do) it should be very safe.

As to your comments about Asians being healthier (overall) than Americans, I think that it is most definately attributed to their lifestyles and diets (particularly the Japanese people). Chinese people unfortunately eat a lot of things that put them at a lot of risk. They drink eel blood and stuff like that....no wonder there are so many viruses (like Asian Bird Flu and such) in China.

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Unfortunately, everything postive I guess can be linked to something negative. The USDA or FDA knows that Sprouted Grains, nuts & seeds deactivate antinutrients and have more nutrient value, but due to fear of contamination or pathogenic microorganisms (how much industrialized food gets contaminated each year?), they opted to give us Refined/Processed Enriched Grains instead. Hmm =/

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Unfortunately, everything postive I guess can be linked to something negative. The USDA or FDA knows that Sprouted Grains, nuts & seeds deactivate antinutrients and have more nutrient value, but due to fear of contamination or pathogenic microorganisms (how much industrialized food gets contaminated each year?), they opted to give us Refined/Processed Enriched Grains instead. Hmm =/

I know. I also found out that psyllium is also irradiated when coming into the country for fear of contamination. I found out that that really does knock out a lot of the nutritional value of psyllium. Who knew, right? eusa_think.gif

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I hate to be a pain in the ass but...

Potential health effects have created an increased interest in Kombucha. Yet, only a few research studies have shown that Kombucha has in vitro antimicrobial activity and enhances sleep and pain thresholds in rats. Furthermore, Kombucha consumption has proven to be harmful in several documented instances.

J Food Prot. 2000 Jul;63(7):976-81.

Kombucha, the fermented tea: microbiology, composition, and claimed health effects.

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I've read tons of testimonies about how good kombucha is for the skin.  I've also experienced firsthand how good kombucha is for the skin.  My skin is looking better and better all the time.

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It does seem fun smile.gif. Exciting...

I dont see how this could be of harm you, im only going to be drinking it once daily and with plenty of water afterwards ninja.gif.

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