Will kimchi and kombucha help you live longer?

Trendy they may be, but fermented food and drinks have not been proven to improve one's health

Kombucha (above), kefir, yogurt and probiotics have found a following among those looking to improve their gut health.
Kombucha (above), kefir, yogurt and probiotics have found a following among those looking to improve their gut health. PHOTO: ST FILE
Kombucha, kefir, yogurt and probiotics (above) have found a following among those looking to improve their gut health.
Kombucha, kefir, yogurt and probiotics (above) have found a following among those looking to improve their gut health. PHOTO: ST FILE

Back away from your scoby right now. Stick the fermentation crock in storage. Chuck out the pro-biotics.

If you are a healthy person looking to have a healthy gut or to live longer, fermented drinks made with the yeast and bacteria culture called a scoby, such as kombucha and kefir; fermented food such as kimchi, sauerkraut, yogurt and miso; and probiotics have not been proven to improve health or longevity.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on October 20, 2019, with the headline 'Will kimchi and kombucha help you live longer?'. Print Edition | Subscribe