At present, there are several popular fermented beverages, among them the best known is the kombucha. This drink is a fermented tea. The most common is made with black tea, but it can also be made with green tea. However, there is another probiotic drink that is much softer in flavor and brings many more benefits to our body. Of course we are talking about water kefir. It is also fermented and is more delicious. The only thing it does’t have is the fame that kombucha currently has.

Differences and similarities amongst water kefir and Kombucha

Kombucha:

1. Kombucha is nothing more than a drink fermented with tea (black or green) and sugar. This drink has a fermentation time of approximately 14 to 21 days (much longer than water kefir).

2. To ferment this sweetened tea-based beverage and transform it into kombucha, you need a Scoby. The Scoby is a set of bacteria and yeasts that live together and that when they eat sugar tea produce kombucha.

3. Its composition is mainly yeast and bacteria. Kombucha, like kefir, can be fermented twice. The first is the basic one that everyone usually does. The second is to add the flavor of their preference and in this fermentation the kombucha usually becomes effervescent. The longer the period of fermentation of the kombucha, the flavor changes and tends to have a slightly strong flavor, such as the taste of vinegar.

4. Kombucha, unlike water Kefir, contains caffeine because it is made of tea. It is totally false that caffeine disappears in the fermentation process. For that reason, it is much more harmful than water kefir.

5. Kombucha in the same way as water kefir also contains among its ingredients a portion of sugar. The longer the fermentation time, the more amount of sugar will have consumed. This means that the amount of sugar consumed will be smaller, but still, there are still traces of sugar.

6. It has a tonic action for digestion since, being a bit acidic, it can help activate gastric juices and digestive fire. Action similar to that of a vinegar.

Water Kefir

1. Water kefir only needs water, sugar and other dehydrated fruits to ferment.

2. Water kefir provides many more benefits. Besides being a much healthier drink you can make different recipes with it.

3. The fermentation process of the water kefir is much faster than the fermentation process of the kombucha. The time is approximately 24 to 48 hours. .

4. In order to make water kefir, you need tibicos (water kefir grains) but it is important to know that the grains of water kefir are not the same as milk kefir grains. Each contains agents for different fermentations. Grains of water kefir are spongy and translucent spheres that are composed of a large number of bacteria and yeast that are linked by sugars.

5. Water kefir has a microbial profile composed mainly of bacteria. This means it has more bacteria than yeasts.

6. Like kombucha, in the second fermentation of Water kefir, you can add the flavor of your preference.

7. Water kefir contains large amounts of enzymes and important sugars that are easy to digest. In addition to containing acids that benefit us, it also provides a quantity of vitamins as well as minerals that are essential for the body. It is an excellent option in case you are in the process of stopping consuming caffeine, since caffeine is present in the components of the kombucha. If you are looking for a drink that contains probiotic properties and in turn keeps you healthy, water kefir is the best choice for you.

8. Water kefir helps regulate the function of the digestive system by populating the internal ecosystem with good bacteria.

Which of the two fermented beverages is better, water kefir or kombucha?

Both are probiotic drinks. They contain bacteria and other beneficial microorganisms for our intestine. Although people tend to believe that they are the same, they really are not. The fermentation process is very different, both the properties, the properties that each one offers, and the period of time for fermentation are different. This implies a series of changes at the composition level.

In addition, the kombucha also contains caffeine. The type of bacteria is different. Water kefir is dominated by bacteria that basically eat sugar, in kombucha we find more yeasts.

Each drink is adapted to the person in terms of their taste, the objective you want to achieve, their needs and health status, because each drink has its own benefits. Some of the are:

  • If you have a problem or intestinal disease, or candidiasis it is not recommended to consume kombucha because the kombucha contains many yeasts. Even some samples of kombucha have discovered candida residues. In this case, it is recommended to drink water kefir.
  • If you want a fermented  drink to share with your whole family including children, the healthiest and most recommendable drink is water kefir.
  • If you suffer from digestive problems and problems related to intestinal flora, it is advisable to drink water kefir
  • If you have problems with cholesterol and blood pressure, water kefir will help reduce these problems.
  • If you want a drink with probiotic properties and that has a mild and much more pleasant taste, the ideal drink for you is the water kefir
  • Water kefir in its components does not contain caffeine at all. For that reason, it is much healthier and is better for children and for people who are very sensitive or who are not tolerant with caffeine. In addition, water kefir has a much milder flavor than kombucha. For that reason, water kefir has a large amount of probiotics that remain in the digestive tract, without containing caffeine they help to stimulate the immune system in a healthy way.
  • Kombucha has an action that helps as a digestive tonic immediately. It helps colonize the intestines with a large amount of yeast and a small amount of bacteria. It helps to detoxify the liver. So if you need a digestive tonic to help you activate your digestive system, the most recommended drink is kombucha
  • If you love strong flavors or you like the taste of vinegar the ideal drink for you is the kombucha.
  • Kombucha also helps detoxification in the liver. This is of great benefit unless you are pregnant or breastfeeding.

What is the difference in taste?

The taste difference is huge, even though both start with a base of sweetened liquid (Kombucha with sweetened tea, while water kefir with sweetened water). However the water kefir after its fermentation process is sweet. It is slightly sweet and this is due to the only remaining sugar residue left over from the fermentation process. This drink must be flavored and flavored, since the taste of the water kefir obtained from fermenting is only water with sugar. On the contrary, the kombucha has a slightly spicy flavor, slightly sweet and gives an effervescent sensation. The flavor varies depending on the time of fermentation and the type of tea that has been used. It can vary from a mild flavor to a strong vinegar-like flavor. Once fermented it can be flavored with juice or fruit to improve or change its flavor in case it does not seem pleasant.

Water kefir tastes more pleasant and tolerable, since for many the taste of kombucha is often unpleasant, even if they add the juice of some fruit.