A fermented drink that can be made for its probiotic value is kombucha. Kombucha is a fermented tea drink of Russian history from the Ural mountain region. To make kombucha you must have a scoby or “mushroom”. This is really a strange looking collection of cells which is a symbiotic colony of yeast and bacteria. These cells act on sugar and tea to produce acetic and lactic acid and a detoxifying agent called glucuronic acid. This acid is something a normally healthy liver produces that neutralizes toxins in the body, but an overworked and overloaded liver cannot produce enough of this acid to always combat the toxins coming into the body. Additional glucuronic acid coming in with the kombucha can aid the body’s natural cleansing process and strength the immune system and will work against cancer and other diseases.
Kombucha is also not a difficult drink to make once you get a scoby. If you know someone who makes kombucha this should be your first option. Otherwise they can often be found through the internet. There is a facebook group called Worldwide share group for cultures, kefir, kombucha, sourdough, jun, etc and this group has people willing to share their cultures for just the cost of shipping it to you.
The recipe for kombucha is simple. Brew black tea-3 quarts filtered water with 1 cup sugar and 4 tea bags of organic black tea. (You want organic because the regular tea often has flouride in it which is not something you want in your body.) Once the tea has been brewed, pour the cooled liquid into a 4 quart jar and add 1/2 cup kombucha from a previous batch and place the scoby on top. Cover the bowl loosely with a towel or cheesecloth or a coffee filter and let sit from 7-10 days (sometimes longer in the winter if it is in a cool place). It should be somewhat sour and rather fizzy with no tea taste remaining when ready to use. (If you let it go too long it will have a strong vinegar taste. This is still drinkable but some people do not enjoy the taste nearly as much.) Store in the refrigerator. Keep the SCOBY and a small amount of remaining kombucha aside for your next batch.
White sugar should be used rather than honey or even rapadura or demarara sugar. Also, black tea rather than flavored teas is important as this usually yields higher amounts of the important gluocoronic acid. Other teas can be used to make kombucha such as green tea, roiboos, flavored black teas, white tea. It is important that the teas you are using do not have artificial flavors since you are brewing this over a longer period of time. Just remember there will be less gluocoronic acid in these other kinds of kombucha.
As you can see kombucha is not a difficult drink to make. When its health benefits are taken into consideration, it is well worth the time and energy to seek out a scoby and begin brewing this healthful concoction in your own kitchen.