What Is Matcha Tea & Which Are Its Positive Effects?
Matcha tea is a type of green tea that comes delivered under the form of a green powder. It is considered to be the most premium type of green tea and also the oldest one.
Did you know?
Matcha is like the espresso of teas. What’s so great about this? It’s healthy! It is said that if you take just a few sips of this tea, you consume all the benefits of the entire leaf, not just what’s left from the process of making green tea. Its nutritional power comes just from the way it is processed. Oh, and did I mention that it is calorie-free?
Researchers call matcha tea a superfood. They also acknowledge the fact that it has an immense potential and contains lots and lots of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals, a lot more than the regular green tea contains.
You might like to read: Top 10 Healthy Seeds For Boosting Nutrition
Origins Of Matcha Green Tea
Matcha is, originally, harvested in Japan. However, there are many other regions in the world that harvest it, but only that from Japan’s has the highest quality. The entire tea ceremony in Japan evolves around the matcha tea, for hundreds of years.
How Is Matcha Tea Obtained
An important fact in the process of making this particular type of green tea is that, prior to the Spring, matcha fields are covered in order to reduce direct sunlight on the leaves. This way, the amount of natural amino acids and chlorophyll is increased. A result of this is the rich green color that the powder has. Needless to say that the flavor is one of a kind.
After this process is done, the leaves are steamed and dried, then crushed down into a very fine powder, by using granite stone mills. This is the matcha green tea.
How To Prepare Matcha Tea
The matcha powder (one scoop) is mixed with hot water (not boiled!), in a bowl, with a bamboo whisk in “M” or “W” motion, for a few minutes. And there you have it: you are practically “drinking” the whole leaf. This is the point where all the miraculous benefits come and kick in.
Benefits of Matcha Tea
- Loaded with antioxidants
I already mentioned the fact that this tea delivers a great deal dose of antioxidants. What I didn’t mention was the fact that it has more antioxidant activity / gram that all other foods rich in antioxidants such as goji berries, pomegranate, blueberries, dark chocolate and other superfoods. Why does this matter? It matters because antioxidants defend the body, prevent aging and other diseases, so, the more you have, the healthy you feel.
- Fights cancer
Another matcha tea health benefit is the fact that it is rich in catechins – a unique class of antioxidants, which cannot be found in other foods and help fight bacteria and infections. But, there is a more specific catechin, called EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate), 60% of it, which is well known as being one of the best when it comes to fighting cancer. Studies show that matcha contains up to over 100 times more EGCG than any other type of green tea.
Matcha increases energy due to a combination of special stimulants. It is rich in amino acids, especially L-theanine, which reduces anxiety and enhances the mood, producing a focused energy (samurais used to drink matcha before going to battle, just because of its energizing properties).
- Boosts metabolism and burns calories
Compared to other teas specially designed for weight loss, matcha green tea improves the metabolism and helps the body burn up to 4 times more fats than usual. It does not have any negative effects such as increased pulse or blood pressure.
- Natural detoxifier
Chlorophyll is a natural detoxifier and helps at delivering oxygen and nutrients to the body’s cells. Matcha helps eliminating toxins and heavy metals from the body, regenerating it and making sure it is cleaned at all levels.
If you want to read more about detoxing your body, you might want to read Roswitha’s experience with 10 Days Oshawa Detox Diet.
- Concentration enhancer
L-theanine helps producing alpha waves in the brain, which induce a profound relaxation state. Also, this rare amino acid promotes a total state of relaxation and helps the memory and the learning process. Although L-theanine is present in every type of tea there is, matcha can contain up to 5 times more of this amino acid.
No wonder it helps Buddhist monks meditate and remain always calm!
- Positive effect on cholesterol
Studies have shown that people who drink matcha daily have a lower level of bad cholesterol (LDL). At the same time, they presented high levels of good cholesterol (HDL). This is a great thing, especially for men, because this can decrease the chances of making a heart diseases up to about 11% compared to men who do not drink this tea.
- Boosts the immune system
Along all the natural amino acids and antioxidants, matcha is also rich in Potassium, Vitamins A & C, Calcium, Proteins and Iron. Drink one bowl of matcha and surely you’ll feel great.
As I come to realize, making green tea takes some patience: you cannot just boil the water and immediately “throw” some leaves in and expect it to be ready in a second. No. The most important thing, especially for green tea, is that the water MUST NOT be boiled! It ruins the delicate aroma and all the nutrients. So, be very careful how you prepare it.
These are the most important matcha tea health benefits, which one do you like best and which one is important enough for you to start drinking matcha tea?
I love drinking green tea, especially the Japanese one, as I realized not so long ago. And I can honestly say that it’s a HUGE difference between green tea bags bought from wherever and actual green tea, brought in from Japan, in different size packages. So, my advice is that if you’re a big fan of any type of green tea, try to get it from its mother, Japan.
If I were to describe the matcha tea in a few keywords, this would be it:
- 100% pure leaf
- 100% healthy
- 100% nutrition
- 100% natural energy
- Antioxidant. Superfood. Energizer. Detoxifier.
I am a tea person for more than 2 years now and I wouldn’t trade it for anything. It makes me happy, healthy, calm, but also energized for a whole day. I just love it!
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