Many people claim that kombucha tea is a great, health-boosting drink. However, recently concerns have been risen over the amount of alcohol which can be found in them. As a result, some wonder if it’s safe to drink, especially for the likes of kids and other at-risk groups…
Kombucha: An Alcoholic Tea?
What is it?
Kombucha is a tea which traces its origins back to eastern China and Russia around 200 years ago. It’s a pretty simple drink when you consider how producers make it. At it’s core, it’s a green or black tea which has some select bacteria strains, yeast, and sugar placed into it. The tea then ferments for a week at room temperature.
So what exactly makes this tea so popular? It all comes down the to supposed health benefits. Drinkers of this tea claim that it helps with digestive health, lowering heart disease risks, and even lowers certain cancer risks. However, it’s important to note than these benefits haven’t been backed by any real scientific studies.
Where the alcohol comes from
Fermentation is a big part of the kombucha brewing process. As a result, the tea does end up containing alcohol in it. However, if made properly, then the amount should be very low. Most commercially sold teas will have less than .5% alcohol. As a result, the tea can be legally considered “non-alcoholic“.
However, in recent times, some brands were found to have anywhere from .5% to nearly 3% ABV. This lead to many stores pulling the tea from their shelves while manufactures worked to adjust their brews. While for the most part this is no longer a problem with professional brews, homebrews still can have varying ABV levels.
Who can drink it?
For the most part, drinking kombucha tea is a personal decision. Brews which meet the legal standards can be drank by anybody. However, the FDA does recommend that pregnant women treat the tea like any other alcoholic drink, and avoid it.
Still, if the idea of your kid drinking something with alcohol in it doesn’t sit right, then you might want to avoid letting them drinking it. Same goes for if you’re recovering from an alcohol addiction. It’s always better to play it safe and not risk it, even if the alcohol content is low.