Pregnancy doesn’t really bring happiness, if it is including the entire “forbidden food” list. There are lots of things to give up; either it is mom’s favorite or just regular menu. As long as the menu has something that might harm the body, it has to be kept until several months later. What about kombucha? Is it harmful or not?
Drinking Kombucha During Pregnancy: The Bitter Truth
Remember when doctor said that pregnant mother should take extra care? This piece of advice is no joke. Even though pregnant women seem intimidating, they are actually in their most fragile state. With this being said, no wonder kombucha is not recommended to be consumed during pregnancy, considering how it was made.
- Alcohol Content
Just like any other fermented product, kombucha also has alcohol in it. The number is relatively small, far from normal booze would have. What is the exact number? It depends on the process.
Some smart minds might opt to have the non-alcohol variation from kombucha. Behold; even the non alcoholic one still has 0.5% alcohol in it. Then is it safe to drink kombucha during pregnancy?
Mothers would immediately ask “how could this small amount of alcohol wreck the baby’? There is a symptom called Fethal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS). It occurs to mothers who constantly drink alcohol during pregnancy. Then what about making kombucha at home? This option is even more dangerous than buying kombucha from store, since the alcohol level is usually higher.
- Bacterial Infection
Fermentation relies heavily on bacteria reaction. The more intense the reaction, the higher kombucha’s alcohol content. Yes, there is good and bad bacteria. Sadly, both grow in similar environment. Therefore, cleanliness in preparation process should be the highest priority. No wonder, those homemade kombucha is out of the list.
There is one way to minimize the number of bad bacteria in fermented food; pasteurizing it. Still, this process doesn’t guarantee that the product is free from bad bacteria. In short, drinking kombucha during pregnancy should be prohibited. Mothers who try to step out from the line might have miscarriage or stillbirth.
- Caffeine Content
Second substance to avoid during pregnancy after alcohol is caffeine. It is twice dangerous than any other foods in liquid form.
Caffeine could be digested within minutes, then go directly to placenta and blood stream. In the other words, the yet-to-be-born baby is indirectly consuming caffeine. After drinking caffeine, pregnant mothers might stay awake for hours and have trouble to sleep.
It takes longer for pregnant body to get caffeine out of the system. Therefore, there is higher chance for these mothers to get exhausted faster, which might call the others insomnia effects. Really, mothers should not drink kombucha during pregnancy. Keep it away until breastfeeding period is over.
How Kombucha Might Help During Pregnancy
Kombucha initially has a lot of benefits for body. Therefore, mothers who regularly consume it before pregnancy might have difficulties to cut the entire portion. As predicted, their bodies will react to this sudden change. In worst case, pregnant mothers will suffer from hemorrhoids, indigestion, heartburn, etc. Under doctor supervisions, these problems could be resolved by controlled amount of kombucha.
- Relieving Heartburns and Indigestion
Having these problems is the least thing any pregnant mothers would expect. Unfortunately, this condition almost always happens as the result of relaxing muscles in esophagus and digestive track. Doctors might ask mothers to drink small amount of kombucha mixed with big glass of water. This mixture will also help to dehydrate the body.
- Helping Mothers to Sleep Better
It has been mentioned before that kombucha contains caffeine. Isn’t it surprising that drinking kombucha in small amount could push out caffeine faster? Again, this is only possible under doctor supervision. Throw away any idea of inventing new kombucha mix.
- Reducing Stretch Mark
Mother’s body undergoes many changes during nine month spans. One most visible change is stretch mark. Applying kombucha as topical medication will help to reduce the color difference.
Despite of all benefits kombucha could offer, some of them sadly could harm growing infant. As the result, kombucha is listed as one of the things any pregnant mother should avoid. This might sound cruel, but what might comes if they keep drinking is scarier.