Is Kombucha Good For IBS?
We regularly hear from our customers that drinking Equinox kombucha has helped them to resolve many of the symptoms of their IBS however, there is a debate between those who think drinking Kombucha helps IBS and those who think it could worsen symptoms. This article will seek to take a deep dive into Kombucha and […]
We regularly hear from our customers that drinking Equinox kombucha has helped them to resolve many of the symptoms of their IBS however, there is a debate between those who think drinking Kombucha helps IBS and those who think it could worsen symptoms. This article will seek to take a deep dive into Kombucha and IBS, looking at how Kombucha can help those with IBS and reduce bloating.
Kombucha and IBS
- What is IBS?
- Can Kombucha heal your gut?
- Is Kombucha a good probiotic?
- Kombucha & FODMAP for IBS
- What about the sugar, caffeine & alcohol in Kombucha?
- Carbonated Drinks & IBS
- What are the best drinks for IBS?
What is IBS?
“IBS’ stands for irritable bowel syndrome and is a disorder affecting the large intestine. Some of the common symptoms of IBS include abdominal cramping, bloating, gas and diarrhoea. It is thought that IBS can be irritated by certain foods and drinks and, as a chronic condition, those with IBS have to carefully manage their diets to reduce these symptoms.
Can Kombucha heal your gut?
IBS is a complex disorder but one of the best places to start in managing the symptoms is to focus on creating good gut health overall. This can include a combination of cutting out certain high fat or over processed food and drinks that are irritants and, instead, introducing fermented, living drinks like Kombucha and Kefir as a means of improving overall gut health. We have written more about how to boost your gut microbiota and the health benefits of fermented tea in our blogs. Our partners River Cottage and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall are also strong advocates of healthy eating and drinking to promote good gut health. Hugh’s recent book ‘Eat Better Forever’ has lots of amazing information as well as delicious recipes you can try yourself!
Is Kombucha a good probiotic?
I know we may sound like a broken record, but authentically brewed and fermented, Kombucha like Equinox is full of living bacterial cultures that promote good gut health. It is also well known that the Kombucha fermentation process can produce a number of probiotic microbes that can balance levels of bacteria in the gut.
Kombucha & FODMAP for IBS
FODMAPs are a type of carbohydrate that contain sugars that can upset the digestive system. Kombucha may be high in FODMAPs however, when enjoyed in moderation can have a positive effect on the gut. Most people with IBS follow a low FODMAP diet and should try and limit their intake of Kombucha to 6 ounces (177ml) or smaller – just less than half a bottle of Equinox Kombucha (perfect for splitting a bottle with a friend).
What about the sugar, caffeine & alcohol in Kombucha?
As we have discussed in previous blogs, Kombucha contains naturally-occurring caffeine, from the green tea, and alcohol, which is produced in the fermentation process. Many IBS sufferers will avoid caffeine and alcohol as it irritates the gut, however Kombucha only contains very small amounts – much less caffeine than coffee and as much alcohol as fruit juice!
If you are managing your IBS symptoms, we recommend avoiding any Kombucha with added sugar and sweeteners, especially sorbitol and mannitol, which can have a laxative effect. Equinox Kombucha is relatively low in sugar with 3g per 100ml and scores a 0 on the new HFSS tax, which is great news for everyone seeking low sugar, healthy alternative drinks!
Carbonated Drinks & IBS
It has been thought in the past that carbonated beverages can contribute to digestive issues and lead to bloating and gas. Kombucha is naturally carbonated as carbon dioxide is produced during the fermentation process, however most of it does not remain in the drink. At Equinox we carbonate our Kombucha to add that sparkle back and recommend trying carbonated drinks in small quantities to see how you react.
What are the best drinks for IBS?
There are a lot of drinks available that are known to reduce the symptoms of IBS. These include:
- Probiotic drinks
- Milk dairy alternatives such as almond or coconut milk
- Green juices
- Decaffeinated coffee
- Pure water
Overall, no matter what healthy drinks you choose, we recommend avoiding sugary and artificially-sweetened fizzy drinks, dairy milk, high-fructose fruit juices and regular coffee,which are all known to irritate the gut microbiome.
Ultimately, everyone is different and various foods and drinks will affect us all in different ways. Some people report improved digestive health and reduced bloating from drinking Kombucha regularly, and for others Kefir or Green Juices are better. Why not try our 14 Day Kombucha Challenge to see how you feel?
One of our previous participants told us…
“I love your kombucha and it has made me feel younger, due to IBS going away! Thank you and keep up the good work.”
Why not give it a go and see if it can help you too?