Kombucha, also popular as Immortal Health Elixir, is a fermented, healthy tea that you prepare by mixing green or black tea with sugar, and a symbiotic culture of bacteria and yeast (SCBY). It is known to improve your child’s immunity. However, it contains alcohol.
The fermentation of the beverage takes about one week, and fermentation can also produce 0.5% alcohol content in the probiotic beverage. (1) Kombucha is native to China, and it’s has been around for more than 2,000 years for its incredible health benefits. Fruit juice and other flavors can be used to prepare it.
Experts do claim that there is no substancial evidence of kombucha being 100% safe. There could be a few repercussions like stomach infections and allergies. So, consult your doctor before you decide to give it to your kids. (2)
12 Health Benefits Of Kombucha For Kids:
1. Improves Digestion:
Naturally fermented probiotics in the Kombucha promote the growth of beneficial micro-organisms and aid in maintaining healthy gut flora of children. The fermented tea contains about 20 strains of yeast which are beneficial for the gut. The consumption of kombucha preserves nutrients, breaks them down into easily digestible elements, and improves absorption of minerals, such as iron, magnesium, copper, phosphorous, calcium, and zinc. These minerals help in boosting digestion.
[ Read: Is Green Tea Safe For Kids ]
2. Prevents Depression:
By including kombucha in your kid’s diet, you can help improve your child’s mental clarity, stabilize his moods, and fight depression and anxiety problems. Kombucha comprises vitamin B1 (thiamine), vitamin B6, and vitamin B12, which helps your kid combat depression and improve his concentration abilities significantly.
3. Detoxifies The Body:
Being a natural detoxifier, Kombucha promotes detoxification. The fermented tea is rich in several enzymes and bacterial acids and minimizes load on pancreas and liver. Also, glucuronic acid content in kombucha binds to the toxins present in the body and promotes their smooth excretion through intestines or kidney.
4. Prevents Risk Of Cancer:
Glucaric acid content in kombucha aids in preventing the potential risk of cancer in children to a great extent. Medical studies reveal that kombucha cures cancer without any radiation or chemotherapy. (3)
5. Promotes Cellular Health And Immunity:
Kombucha is a rich source of powerful antioxidants and organic acids, such as glucuronic acid, that promote cellular health. Antioxidants protect your kid’s body from potential oxidative damage by neutralizing free radicals, repairing the damaged cells, and preventing inflammations and ailments. Also, high antioxidant content boosts your kid’s immunity substantially. (4)
6. Treats Gastric Ulcers:
If your child suffers from gastric ulcers, drinking kombucha can offer him great relief. Antioxidants and phenols in the fermented tea aid in safeguarding the mucin content (which could lead to cancer) present in the gastric tissues, reduce the formation of the excess of gastric acids, and cure gastric ulcers quickly. (5)
[ Read: Is Chamomile Tea Safe For Kids ]
7. Healthy Nervous System:
Kombucha promotes the smooth functioning of your child’s nervous system. The fermented tea is rich in vitamin C, vitamin B9 and B vitamins, amino acids, methylxanthine, and alkaloids, hence working well against epilepsy, nervous disorders, stroke, and headache in kids effectively.
8. Increases Energy And Decreases Sugar Cravings:
Kombucha is a natural energy booster. It also helps in regulating your child’s sugar cravings, which help in controlling weight. It helps in curbing soft drink cravings too.
9. Improves Eyesight:
Kombucha contains nutrients that help enhance your kid’s eyesight significantly. The tea helps in the removal of floaters (which are spots in vision).
10. Cures Anemia:
Organic acids in the kombucha convert plant’s iron compound into divalent iron ions, thus making iron from the plant sources available to humans. Also, Kombucha is rich in vitamin C, which aids in iron absorption substantially. Drinking the fermented tea on a regular basis will help boost hemoglobin count and treat the symptoms of anemia, such as fatigue and dizziness.
11. Prevents Joint Problems:
Glucosamine content in kombucha prevents and treats joints related problems and joint damage in kids significantly. Glucosamine increases the production of synovial hyaluronic acid, which supports the preservation of cartilage and joint collagen, and prevents pain.
12. Treats Microbial Infections:
The anti-microbial properties of kombucha work against pathogenic bacteria, such as Salmonella and E Coli, and cure infections. The tea is rich in organic and acetic acids, enzymes, proteins, and bacteriocins that provide your child anti-microbial benefits to enjoy good health. (6)
[ Read: Can Kids Drink Tea ]
Can Kids Drink Kombucha?
Though kombucha is safe for children, you should give it to them only after consulting your physician to avoid its side effects. We list some potential side effects of having excess of kombucha.
6 Side-Effects Of Kombucha On Kids:
1. Diarrhea And Bloating:
Drinking inappropriate amount of kombucha can make your child suffer from bloating, gas, and diarrhea. Children respond to different drinks in different ways. Heartburns, ulcers, and other gastrointestinal disorders are also some of the effects. Consult your physician for the required dosage of the tea is always beneficial. (7)
Lightheadedness is one of the common side effects that kids can experience after drinking kombucha. Excess of kombucha can cause dizziness, significant drop in the blood pressure, urination, shortness of breath, throat tightness, liver inflammation, nausea, and vomiting.
3. Changed Appetitive Behaviors:
You prepare kombucha by brewing black tea and sugar, so it contains about 0.5% alcohol. Even though this is a negligible amount, it is wise to exercise caution as having excess kombucha increases alcohol intake which can put your child in danger. Caffeine levels in the fermented tea, if high, can cause fluctuation in sugar levels, anxiety disorders, and discomfort in kids. (8)
4. Calcium Depletion:
Excess consumption can cause calcium depletion in children as it binds itself to body essential minerals. Increasing your kid’s mineral, particularly calcium intake, by increasing his milk intake, can counterbalance the effect.
5. Affects Immune System:
Small amounts of wild yeasts or pathogenic bacteria in kombucha can affect your child’s immunity adversely if he has a weak immune system. So, make sure you don’t rely entirely on kombucha to enhance your kid’s health. Ensure your child eats healthy foods daily.
[ Read: How To Boost Kids Immune System ]
6. Cold And Flu:
Kombucha can pose a risk to the newly developing balance and body system of child and make your child hyperactive. It increases the frequency of cold and flu in kids. An average child may suffer from cold four to ten times every year. In addition to this, your kid may become vulnerable to high fevers, skin disorders, and asthma.
6 Safety Tips To Follow While Giving Kombucha To Kids:
You can avoid the adverse effects by following certain tips. Here, we list some safe ways to give kombucha to your children.
- Choose to give store-bought kombucha tea instead of home-brewed concoction as home-made kombucha may be contaminated, prove risky, and lack quality than industry-made tea.
- Initially, begin to give one tablespoon of the fermented tea and then increase the intake if your kid suffers from no adverse reaction.
- Store the kombucha by following the instructions on the purchased bottle from the stores.
- You can dilute kombucha to reduce its strength if you think it would be too strong for your child.
- Kombucha in sparing quantities counterbalances dehydration.
- Provide your child a balanced, nutritious diet every day.
A Word Of Caution:
Do not give kombucha tea to babies as they have an underdeveloped digestive system. They may not digest kombucha well, affecting their health adversely.
Did you give kombucha to your child? What was the reaction? Let us know below.
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