Green tea powder is good for both physical and mental health. Getty Images
- Matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves that are picked, steamed, dried, and ground into a fine powder.
- The global matcha market was worth US$3.27 billion in 2021, and its popularity has only grown since then.
- Matcha is naturally rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that may support heart health and weight loss.
Most days, Dominique Fluker starts her mornings with matcha. The green tea powder, native to Japan, has become a mainstay in her morning routine after the Los Angeles reporter first tried it about a month ago at a wellness event.
“I was instantly hooked because I didn’t have that 2pm crash like I usually do with coffee,” she shared. “I don’t have to refuel and buy more caffeine later in the day.”
Most importantly, Fluker says the matcha helps her calm down, and combined with her Pilates practice, she feels more grounded in her body.
“I work at a publishing house on the East Coast, so I start work at 4:30 every morning. I write, edit and report the news, everything. Then I go to school three times a week in the afternoon,” Fluker explains. “So my energy has to be there, my focus has to be there. Matcha helps me and my digestive system a lot.”
Fluker isn’t the only matcha fanatic.a report published Reports and data The global matcha market was determined to be worth US$3.27 billion in 2021, and its popularity has only grown since then. But can health promises be kept? We researched the benefits of matcha.
What is matcha?
Dr. Raghu Kiran Appasani, MUDWTR mental health consultant, integrative and addiction psychiatrist and founder of MINDS Foundation, explains that matcha is made from shade-grown tea leaves that are picked, steamed, then dried and then ground into fine powder. .
“Matcha is traditionally used in Japanese tea ceremonies and is known for its vibrant green color, delicate flavor and unique health benefits,” he said. “The shade-growing process increases the chlorophyll and amino acid content of the tea leaves, which gives matcha its unique umami flavor and nutritional properties.”
Benefits of drinking matcha
Matcha is naturally rich in antioxidants, vitamins and minerals. Here are some of the key nutritional benefits of drinking matcha:
- Antioxidants: Matcha is rich in antioxidants, especially catechins, which are known to prevent cell damage and may help reduce the risk of certain diseases.
- L-Theanine: Matcha also contains L-theanine, an amino acid that has been shown to promote relaxation, improve mood, and reduce stress. It also helps enhance alertness/cognitive function and balances the potential “crash” effects of caffeine.
- fiber: Matcha is a good source of fiber, which can aid digestion and promote regular bowel movements.
- Vitamins and Minerals: Matcha is a good source of vitamins A and C and minerals such as potassium and iron.
- Liver Health: Matcha has been shown to have hepatoprotective effects and may help reduce liver damage caused by toxins.
- Heart health: Matcha has been shown to lower blood pressure and improve cholesterol levels.
- Brain Health: One study found that consuming two grams of green tea powder daily for three months improved brain function in older adults.
- Weight management: The polyphenols in matcha can boost metabolism and may aid weight loss.
What are the benefits of matcha and coffee?
Matcha contains approximately 70 milligrams of caffeine per eight ounces, while a cup of coffee contains approximately 90 milligrams of caffeine per eight ounces; however, the caffeine in matcha is released more slowly and steadily thanks to L-theanine.
“This means matcha’s energy boost is longer-lasting and less likely to cause jitters or crashes than coffee,” says Apasani. “Additionally, matcha provides other health benefits such as antioxidants, fiber and vitamins, whereas coffee is often consumed as a stand-alone beverage with no additional health benefits.”
One to two cups of matcha per day is considered a safe amount, but if you are sensitive to caffeine, it is best to consult a healthcare professional before adding matcha to your diet.
What else can you use matcha for?
In addition to drinking it as a tea or latte, matcha powder can be used to add flavor and color to baked goods, ice cream, and more. It can also be added to smoothies, juices, and energy drinks for a natural energy boost.
Due to its high antioxidant content, matcha powder can be added to masks, scrubs, and other beauty products to help protect skin from damage.
“As long as the matcha powder is of high quality and used in the right amount, the benefits of matcha still apply when used in other ways,” explains Appasani. “The benefits of matcha may vary depending on the quality and purity of the powder, and the amount used in a given recipe.”