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Kombucha causing headaches?

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hi All, I'm hoping that I can get some insight here.
I just got my first scoby last week and made some fantastic kombucha out of it. I used black tea and it tastes so great and my whole family really enjoys it. Took 6 days to ferment. Anyhow, I tried it yesterday for the first time and then I got a headache at the back of my neck up through my head. I only had about 4-6 ounces. It went away so I had some more today, a little less I guess. Now I have the headache again, and it's a bit worse.
Do you think it's from the tea detoxing me or something else? This is really frustrating. Do you know how long it will last if it is from the tea? I am making another batch with green and black tea as we speak and I don't want to give it up but don't like the headaches either. My family has not reported feeling anything like this but I only gave my kids a very small amount.
Thanks-
post #2 of 14
I've read of people having reactions like this, kombucha does seem to mobilize toxins quite well. I've avoided it because of this because I know I have detoxification issues (hopefully mostly in the past by this point).

Headaches and stuff like that (and longer-term issues that can occur, mood problems spring to mind) are caused when there's an imbalance between what's mobilized and what you have the nutritional reserves to deal with. We can mobilize some toxins (metals or weird chemicals or whatever) and not notice it when we've got the nutrients to excrete them in a reasonable timeframe. When we can't, they move around for a long time, resettle, start to mess with other natural chemical processes in our bodies.

Supplementing some nutrients should help in the short-term, vitamin C is my go-to, magnesium is a helpful one too.

eta: and if you're breastfeeding right now, I'd stop consuming it altogether. If you're not, you've got choices on where to go, but I've talked with and/or written with people who've had significant reactions to kombucha themselves and were breastfeeding at the same time, and no one thought it was good for their nurselings.
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thanks, I'm not nursing so that's not an issue. I wonder if I should just drink less, I would hate to stop because of it if it isn't going to last very long. It's also sort of scary to think that I have all of that floating around inside of me waiting to get out!
post #4 of 14
I agree w/ tanyalynn. Kombucha is a fabulous mobilizer of toxins. I'd just go really really slow, and make sure to well support your detox pathways, as she said, w/ lots of vit C, mag, zinc, selenium, etc. Even if you just do sips a day to start w/. I'd add lots of water too to help get stuff out.

Do you have any amalgam fillings? Kombucha is known (at least here at MDC) to be good at mobilizing metals, such as mercury. Like I said, you just want to make sure your detox pathways are well supported--headache is a sign that you are detoxing too many toxins too quickly and they are not all getting out, but probably resettling in new places (organs, brain, etc--no good!)
post #5 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairyRae View Post
I agree w/ tanyalynn. Kombucha is a fabulous mobilizer of toxins. I'd just go really really slow, and make sure to well support your detox pathways, as she said, w/ lots of vit C, mag, zinc, selenium, etc. Even if you just do sips a day to start w/. I'd add lots of water too to help get stuff out.

Do you have any amalgam fillings? Kombucha is known (at least here at MDC) to be good at mobilizing metals, such as mercury. Like I said, you just want to make sure your detox pathways are well supported--headache is a sign that you are detoxing too many toxins too quickly and they are not all getting out, but probably resettling in new places (organs, brain, etc--no good!)

What is amalgam filings? Does that mean I have mercury in me?
I thought that Kumbacha had lots of vit c already? I took a whole foods multi with it yesterday, do you think that's enough or should I add something else too?
post #6 of 14
Also, some folks will take various kinds of clay or charcoal to help mop up toxins as they are being released. The problem w/ clay (I think) is that it can absorb minerals/vitamins? and take them out too, so I think it should be taken apart from food. I really don't know enough about it.

I *do* know that on nights where I've chosen to have way too much wine a shot of bentonite clay in a small glass of water does wonders for preventing hangover. (I have bentonite here, but not sure if it's the best for getting toxins out...)

Good luck!! I've been working on detox pathway stuff in myself for a while now, and still have quite a ways to go...
post #7 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenniepaige View Post
What is amalgam filings? Does that mean I have mercury in me?
I thought that Kumbacha had lots of vit c already? I took a whole foods multi with it yesterday, do you think that's enough or should I add something else too?
Amalgam fillings are the metal ones that you can see that look silver in your teeth. (I have at least 4 ) Most of us have some mercury in us somewhere, whether it be from vaccines or amalgams or both/other...Some folks do fine w/ excreting mercury and other metals (it depends on the state of their detox pathways, I believe) while others have a lot of trouble excreting it/dealing w/ it. It all just depends. And I honestly know very very little about it. (The allergies forum ladies are amazing and highly knowledgeable about this stuff though--don't hesitate to ask about this there, and about detox pathways!)

I don't know how much vit. C is needed--I've read something about supping 1000mg C 2x a day, I think. But coming from a whole foods perspective, I try to get it in w/ acerola berry powder, 1 tsp, 1-2 x a day. I don't know how much is 'enough'. I'm really in the learning phases about all this stuff still...Again, allergy forum mamas might have better info for you. I know that you can get the selenium you need from 1-2 brazil nuts a day though. And I've been utilizing magnesium oil, homemade, for supping mag. Zinc is tough--oysters are great for it, if you'll eat them (like 1x a week would be great). Pumpkin seeds are another good source (1/4 c a day gives you most of the zinc you need, I think...) That is, if you're absorbing it well from food. (If not, I believe chelated minerals and ionic minerals are best absorbed if you want to supp.) It's really complex stuff that I totally don't have a great grasp on yet...

If I were you, I'd prob. just try going a little slower on it, and continue taking that vitamin, and see if you can increase the foods that have mag/zinc/selenium/C/etc.

Sorry I'm not more help!!
post #8 of 14
Hmmm...does kombucha kill off candida? B/c that might be linked--there is info out there about how candida binds mercury, and if you kill the candida, the mercury is released (and if you don't excrete/detox it well, it just resettles somewhere else and wreaks havoc.) There is a great thread on candida and mercury (maybe it involves Susun Weed as well?) if you search the archives, if you want to learn more...

ETA: Sorry to be so random. Here is the mercury/candida/Susun Weed thread
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Wow! I had no idea all of this. I do have one of those silver fillings, had it since I was a kid. But I don't eat much fish for other forms or mercury and no vaccines since a kid.
I will check out the candida link but I thought that had to do with a yeast over-growth? Sorry if I sound clueless, this is new to me!
post #10 of 14
It does, I'm just being random. Sorry! Why I posted that is that I'm wondering if kombucha kills candida, which could be a reason why it helps mobilize mercury. I have no idea if that's true or not, but I just found it interesting. Please ignore if its not helpful/doesn't resonate--my mind is just really random today and bouncing around to little bits of info I *think* I've read.

So please, don't take my word for anything, research all this stuff more for yourself--like I said, I'm just learning here about all this and trying to make sense of it for *me*...

ETA: Sorry to go OT!!! I know you're looking for specific info and I kind of went off into left field!
post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenniepaige View Post
What is amalgam filings? Does that mean I have mercury in me?
I thought that Kumbacha had lots of vit c already? I took a whole foods multi with it yesterday, do you think that's enough or should I add something else too?
Amalgam fillings are the metal ones that are sort of puddled onto your teeth. Stainless steel is shiny and smooth and looks like, well, stainless steel.

Amalgam fillings are 47% mercury by weight and some is released into our bodies. Some people do fine getting rid of that--and good nutrition helps there--but some people are inherently pretty poor at doing it. It causes a variety of health problems depending on an individual's genetic tendencies and specific nutritional deficiencies.

I'm not sure, though, that kombucha specifically mobilizes mercury more than other things, it's just that people, like me, who have had trouble excreting mercury from our fillings for decades develop problems excreting all the environmental chemicals we run into, so we build up a weird assortment of metals/chemicals/who-knows-what.

And that's all background you probably don't need, but some of the people who have issues with kombucha also generally have a detoxification problem. And detoxification problems don't have to start with mercury, that's just one that I was completely unaware of for, well, a few decades.

I can say from personal experience that when I've had too many toxins mobilized, my need for vitamin C can skyrocket. I use sodium ascorbate, a form that's easy on the stomach, and I have taken large doses, 20-40 grams per day, sometimes more. I'm probably at one end of a spectrum, not saying you're at all where I am, but just as a comparison point.

If you wanted, it seems reasonable to do a bit of reading to choose a few nutrients to supplement and then try to use the kombucha, in smaller amounts, to get healthier. Personally I've seen different symptoms short-term vs long-term, not specifically for kombucha, but for other approaches I've used to help with detoxification. Headaches, body aches, digestive weirdness can be short-term, longer term I'm prone to depression, others to anxiety, I've had insomnia problems. Just something to keep in mind longer-term and adjust accordingly--that's why having nutritional support is helpful, when we run low via the nutrients being used up with this stuff, there isn't enough to make the regular assortment of chemicals our bodies run on.
post #12 of 14
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by FairyRae View Post
Hmmm...does kombucha kill off candida? B/c that might be linked--there is info out there about how candida binds mercury, and if you kill the candida, the mercury is released (and if you don't excrete/detox it well, it just resettles somewhere else and wreaks havoc.) There is a great thread on candida and mercury (maybe it involves Susun Weed as well?) if you search the archives, if you want to learn more...

ETA: Sorry to be so random. Here is the mercury/candida/Susun Weed thread

That link doesn't work btw.
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by jenniepaige View Post
That link doesn't work btw.
Sorry! Here is is: http://www.mothering.com/discussions...d.php?t=952566
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
Yea, so I'm convinced it is a detoxing effect now. I have cut back by about half today and it's not so bad. Instead of drinking it all at once I am just going to sip on it a little bit throughout the day and load up on water and some extra vit c.
I would be curious if others are expierencing it though and what they have done about it.
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