Medusomyces gisevii – this is how scientists call Kombucha or tea fungus. It bears a resemblance to a medusa with its dense light brown, sometimes pinkish jelly-like structure. From a biological point of view, it is not a fungus, not a medusa, or even a single organism, but it is a culture of bacteria and yeast.
This culture is used to make Kombucha - a slightly carbonated drink from fermented tea, sugar, and bacteria. Its popularity is explained by the fact that Kombucha is able to provide your body with several important bonuses at once: charge with energy for the whole day, cope with pain and inflammation, strengthen the immune system, just to name a few.
This natural fermented drink originated from China. For the last 10–15 years, Kombucha has been very popular in countries with a high standard of living, such as the United States, Great Britain, and Australia. This drink became the symbol of a healthy lifestyle.
Though it has nothing similar with mushrooms, in Russian, the kombucha culture is known as chajnyj grib (lit. “tea mushroom”), in Chinese as hongchajun (lit. “red tea fungus/mushroom” ), in Japanese, as “kōcha kinoko” (lit. “black tea mushroom” ).
Kombucha is rich in probiotics that are good for digestion. Some athletes use Kombucha as a refreshing drink after exercise, since water alone is not enough. The thing is that the electrolytes that we lose during exercise should be restored. Kombucha supplies the body with electrolytes, among which are sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, and chlorine that are necessary for any human body.
The special qualities of Kombucha are known worldwide. Its healing power is used to relieve diseases and support the organism.
Surfing the Internet for Kombucha, you will find numerous mentions of the acronym SCOBY. “SCOBY” means Symbiotic Culture Of Bacteria and Yeast. In the structure of Kombucha, we distinguish SCOBY mother and babies. SCOBY babies are the layers from which the “mother” consists of. They can be separated from the “mother” when they have reached 0,5 cm thickness and are used to ferment tea.
You can ask for SCOBY from a friend who is brewing Kombucha. You can order one online. But the best option is to grow your own, for more health benefits. To grow it from a scratch you will need tea, sugar, and apple vinegar.
For more information on Kombucha’s benefits and growing recipes, please check these videos and links:
Kombucha Making: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D3Axb37lMWI
Scoby from a scratch: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bwwYUFG9iso
Dr. Josh Axe on Kombucha: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YktZtBBjps
How to make Kombucha: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w4tIXNkB4a0