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Ginger beer question  RSS feed

 
Julie Bernhardt
Posts: 54
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
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I am going to make some home fermented ginger beer.
Space in my fridge is at a premium right now and although the garage and porch are cold, both places are likely to freeze.
I read at this site about home pasteurizing to make sweetened brews shelf stable.
webpage

My question is, will this negate the health benefits of the ginger beer?
If it leaves my brew just a fizzy ginger flavored drink I might as well just buy it instead of making it.
 
Dave Burton
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Location: Greater Houston, TX US Hardy:9a Annual Precipitation: 44.78" Wind:13.23mph Temperature:42.5-95F
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By health benefits, if you mean probiotics, yes, the bacteria used in the fermentation to make the ginger beer will be killed by the pasteurization process. To maintain the probiotic benefit, the bacteria have to stay alive.

I do not think all health benefits would be lost because you are making a homemade drink, and I think homemade foods and drinks are healthier than store-bought foods and drinks.
 
Julie Bernhardt
Posts: 54
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
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Thank you Dave.
I knew the yeast would die but there are more medicinal properties to ginger that I didn't know if heat would effect.
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I don't know the dosage to benefit from it either so maybe having it as a drink is too weak to do any good anyway.

I've always been somewhat confused about the yeast issue. I have read that antibiotics or eating too much carbohydrates can cause an overabundance of yeast in your body, but it is supposed to be beneficial to consume yeast?
 
Dave Burton
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Oooh, that is something I did not consider. When you heat something up, you are also denaturing the proteins.

My main thinking was that homemade stuff is better than store-bought stuff, I did not look up the medicinal properties affected by heat. So here's what I have come up with:

I found an article discussing the benefits of ginger tea, a general article by WebMD about uses and benefits of ginger, and one article by ScienceDaily giving a brief overview of a study about ginger conducted with raw ginger, heated ginger, and a placebo for control.

From what I can gather from the articles, I do not think too many of the properties would be lost since the articles indicate that the heated-ginger and raw ginger both helped fight inflammation and pain. Also, the articles noted that people gain benefits from drinking ginger tea which is a heated beverage made with boiling water. I cannot say whether the proteins were denatured or not: that was not discussed in any of the articles. I can make a good guess that whatever chemicals and/or proteins in the ginger that existed before heating still exist in some beneficial form that humans can take up after being exposed to 212 degrees Fahrenheit (temperature of boiling water). Also, another thing to note is that water boils at a temperature higher than the FDA recommended pasteurization temperatures.

Tea is typically, at least when I drink tea, in a mug. So, if they had servings like this of the tea to get benefits, a whole bottle of ginger beer, like one of those old glass coca-cola bottles, should be enough.

There was an interesting article about a man who drank beer in a particular habit that he established a colony of Saccharomyces cerevisiae (a species of yeast) in his gut, creating what is called auto-brewery syndrome. He was making alcohol inside his own body. That is from beer, a different form of carbohydrates than what people usually think of.

There is a lot of information to sift through; I hope you don't mind if I just I just direct you to some things to look at.

Explore Yeast is a website dedicated to everything about yeast.
Dr.Chutkan gave a presentation about the human microbiome.

There are also some very good TED talks about the microbiome:



Now the carb thing goes into the huge carbs vs fat vs paleo vs all these other things about eating. My only recommendation is eat and drink what your body tells you in moderation. Your body knows what it wants to eat. I think doing some research on how carbs and yeast and the basic interactions of biological molecules would be a good place to start.



I hope at least the beginning of my answer was helpful. Don't get me wrong, the reading and learning from doing research online is quite fun, but, it is time consuming. Yeah, sigh, I have stuff to do this holiday, too. Tell me what you learn and find out, I would like to hear what conclusions you come to.
 
Dayna Williams
Posts: 79
Location: Zone 8, Western Oregon
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What recipe are you using, Julie? My ginger ale recipe from Nourishing Traditions is inoculated with whey and mostly develops lactobacillus bacteria, I believe, not yeast. So if your recipe is similar, it may not contain much yeast at all. The sugar that remains in my recipe, even after fermentation, would probably encourage yeast growth though, if we had a problem with that. I could probably ferment it a bit longer so it would digest more of the sugar if I were concerned about sugar consumption, just like you can do with kombucha.

In general though, I don't see why it would be harmful to consume a different strain of yeast even if you have candida overgrowth (the most common type of yeast overgrowth that I'm aware of). Like eating nutritional yeast doesn't seem like it would have any effect at all on candida. Saying "don't consume yeast or other fungi if you have candida overgrowth" seems to me like saying "don't eat yogurt if you have e. coli poisoning." Just because they are both bacteria doesn't mean they are the same, and just because 2 things are both fugni doesn't mean they are the same creature.
 
Julie Bernhardt
Posts: 54
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
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Thank you so much!! ther's a lot of info for me to sift through!
I used a recipe that you start a ginger bug with just grated ginger, sugar and water. It is supposed to take a week at least to activate, but I had an older piece of ginger in my fridge that I could hear it fizzing right after I combined it. I also added a little bit of my hard cider to get it going good. Then you simmer some filtered water with some more grated ginger and sugar. I used some brown sugar. This is added to cool water and when room temperature some of the ginger bug is added. It sits room temp for a few days and then refrigerated. I read several recipes and the proportions varied slightly but they were pretty much the same except the ones using whey.
I have some Greek yogurt if that would make a better product.

My DH is a recovered alcoholic so I have to be careful about what fermented drinks I offer him. He has a lot of stomach upset so he takes commercial fiber and occasionally nexium for acid re flux but is trying to limit both. He has really cut down on the nexium and uses other antacids first. He has diverticulosis and is eating a high vegetable diet but we have some meat on the weekends.

My concern about the yeast is because I had a problem with yeast infections in the past but not recently. I had cut down my sugar intake a few years ago and hadn't had an infection since then. I am taking Advair for asthma that also makes me more prone to yeast infections but I miss my afternoon dose a lot.
We are in our fifties and are less pharmaceuticaly dependent than most people I know our age but I still want to cut it down more.



 
R Scott
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Location: Kansas Zone 6a
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Look into Candida albicans. Systemic yeast infection. Can cause a craving for sweets, or alcohol! And chronic yeast infections. And asthma and acid reflux and a myriad of other chronic issues.
 
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