Mega Health Benefits of Matcha

matcha blogYou have probably seen this curious green drink advertised in your favorite coffee shop or sold in a local grocery store. It’s often intimidating because of its vibrant green color, but the health benefits and flavor profile far outweigh any reservation to consume it! This frothy, creamy green tea is full of nutrients and full-bodied flavor, making it a great way to mix up your tea intake.

First off, what is matcha?

Matcha tea is a type of green tea that comes from Japan. Traditionally, it is prepared using a chasen, or bamboo whisk, that helps dissolve the powder into hot water. It has long been consumed to help with focus and calmness, a great tool for meditation and studying.

Matcha is basically ground up green tea leaves. Because the leaves are ground up straight from the leaves, it’s highly nutritious. Traditional green tea steeps leaves in hot water, which still helps release antioxidants and nutrients, but not as effectively as matcha green tea does.

That doesn’t mean you need to stop drinking traditional green tea, it still has many health benefits, but matcha does contain more nutrients than a traditional cup of green tea. Matcha does however contain more caffeine than a cup of regular green tea. On average, an 8 oz cup of matcha has about 45-60 milligrams of caffeine while regular green tea has about 30-50 milligrams per 8 oz serving.

What are the health benefits of drinking matcha?

Matcha green tea is rich in many nutrients, including antioxidants, polyphenols, fluorine, L-theanine, and vitamins A, B, & C. Matcha is one of the most powerful superfoods to consume. Because matcha has an abundance of nutrients, drinking it on a regular basis has been shown to improve the following:

  1. Focus & Energy: The combination of light caffeine and L-theanine helps to create a calm, focused state without the energy crash regular caffeine intake shows.
  2. Stress: Green tea is notorious for having high amounts of L-theanine, which is an essential amino acid shown to reduce anxiety and promote a calming state.
  3. Oral Health: The high amounts of chlorophyll, fluorine, and vitamin C all help prevent risk of cavities and plaque build-up.
  4. Inflammation: The high antioxidant and flavonoid profile helps combat inflammation in the body, especially for arthritis.
  5. Fitness: The caffeine helps fuel a good workout and improve fitness gains, while the antioxidants help with recovery after a hard workout.
  6. Skin Health: The combination of antioxidants and water helps the skin look and feel more nourished and bright.
  7. Cholesterol & Heart Health: The polyphenols present in matcha, a type of antioxidant, have been shown to help reduce cholesterol levels and improve circulation to the heart.
  8. Immunity: Matcha contains a special catechin antioxidant called EGCg, which is helpful for fighting against many viral and bacterial infections. 

How can I add more matcha to my diet?

  • Blend It: Toss a serving of matcha into your favorite smoothie, or blend it with cold milk and ice for a creamy energy drink. Replace regular green tea with matcha in this Good Green Tea Smoothie recipe on the Foodsmart app!
  • Mix It: Matcha powder can be mixed into almost any food, including oatmeal, pancake batter, or muffin recipe. Try Overnight Matcha Oats with Berries or Easy Matcha Muffins for a fun treat.
  • Whisk It: Make a traditional cup of hot matcha tea before working on a big project or an hour before your workout. Whisk ½ teaspoon of matcha powder into 8 oz of hot water. Make sure to whisk vigorously so the powder dissolves completely! You can also try making your own Matcha Green Tea Latte for added flavor.

The bottom line:

Matcha is more than just a caffeine boost, it’s full of many nutrients that can help improve everything from energy to cholesterol levels. Enjoy in many different ways on a daily or weekly basis!

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