Matcha speaks of Japanese tea ceremonies dating back more than 800 years and the thousand stories behind each of them. It was used by monks before meditation and by samurai warriors before and after battle. Today, the benefits of matcha tea help you take care of yourself from the inside out for better health and improved skin quality all over your body.
Want to experience the stillness and peace it brings? Do it knowing that, with every sip, you also enjoy infinite health benefits.
Matcha is made from the same leaves as green tea from the Camellia Sinensis plant. The main difference with normal green tea is that matcha is made using the whole leaf.
These leaves are plucked, dried, fried and then ground into the fine, tasty-looking powder we know. Thanks to the use of the whole leaf and the grinding process, the benefits of matcha green tea are multiplied: it offers ten times more antioxidants than a cup of ordinary green tea.
Only the strongest and healthiest green tea leaves are chosen to become matcha. They are carefully extracted from plants that grow in the shade, thus increasing their chlorophyll content (now you understand why matcha powder has that unmistakable bright green colour).
Matcha is very simple to make and allows you to enjoy the properties of Matcha on a daily basis.
It is packed with antioxidants and contains ten times the amount of normal green tea. The Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity test showed that matcha recorded 1384 units per gram (125 times higher levels of antioxidants than spinach).
In addition, matcha is high in epigallocatechin gallate, which is ideal for reducing inflammation, fighting free radicals and preventing a host of chronic diseases. A Consumer Lab study found that brewed matcha tea contained more catechins per gram than commonly brewed green tea (which contains a high 25-86 mg per serving).
Among its main benefits are these:
1. Boosts the immune system. Matcha tea is loaded with vitamins and minerals: vitamin C, magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin F and B vitamins, which is why it is so effective in fighting colds and flu. The vitamin P it contains helps to keep bones and cartilage healthy. Recent studies have shown that green tea can increase the number of T-cells in the body and these are very important for the immune system. Drinking matcha can stimulate their production and help reduce the risk of autoimmune diseases.
2. Improves heart health. Catechins, which are one of the main antioxidants in matcha tea, have been found to help prevent heart disease, stroke and heart attack through their antihypertensive, anti-inflammatory and antithrombogenic qualities. Catechins also have a lipid-lowering effect, further cementing its status as a heart-healthy catechin.
3. Lowers cholesterol. It does this by increasing levels of HDL cholesterol (the good kind, as it helps remove waste from the arteries). Recent studies on the effects of cholesterol and green tea (including matcha) reveal that “consumption of green tea results in significant reductions in LDL concentrations in the body”.
4. Improves brain function. Matcha tea provides polyphenols, is rich in amino acids and contains a high concentration of L-theanine, which increases alpha waves in the brain. These are responsible for calming the mind and allowing a person to focus their attention, which helps the thinking and decision-making process. Combine that with the hint of caffeine that matcha tea brings and you remain effortlessly alert, not in a state of nervous alertness, but a calm clarity that keeps you connected to your sense of purpose. A study on the combined effects of L-theanine and caffeine on cognitive performance and mood found that both speed and accuracy of performance in participants improved along with an increase in memory.
5. Fights arthritis damage. Its polyphenols and healthy compounds make it possible to grease the joints and leave the limbs in tune. The antioxidants found in matcha and green tea are known for their anti-inflammatory properties and can even slow down the destruction of cartilage.
6. Protects the liver. The liver is one of the body’s most essential organs and keeping it in top shape is very important for our overall health and well-being. It is also key to achieving vital, radiant, wrinkle-free skin. The liver is responsible for getting rid of toxins and processing nutrients, and according to matcha research, “green tea drinkers have lower levels of liver enzymes”. This is a good thing as enzymes are a reflection of liver damage.
7. Helps with weight loss. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition explains why matcha helps when it comes to burning fat. The reason is that catechins contain thermogenic properties, which is the rate at which we burn calories. Drinking matcha can increase that rate not only when resting, but also when exercising. Did you know that drinking matcha as part of your exercise routine can increase calorie burn by 25%?
8. Improves skin. Among the benefits of matcha tea are those related to beauty. This drink is so good for the skin that it is even used in face masks. Whether topically or orally, it is used to slow down the visual signs of ageing. That’s because Matcha is packed with catechins that help prevent free radical damage. Matcha, like silica, is also rich in antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, which can soothe irritated skin and promote regeneration. It is highly recommended for those suffering from rosacea, acne or any skin condition (such as oily skin, as the tannins regulate sebum production).
Brewing matcha is soothing. Allow yourself to enjoy the beauty of the moment, you will see how the process becomes intuitive over time.
To prepare matcha in a cup, just follow these steps:
1. Heat the water.
2. Add a few drops of hot water to the matcha powder and mix to a paste, using a spoon.
3. Add more hot water to the mixture and stir. Adjust the measure to taste.
4. Disconnect from everything while enjoying the benefits of the matcha tea in your hands.
The classic way to prepare matcha tea requires you to add the tea to hot water or milk and use a bamboo whisk to make foam. Why bamboo? This is the best tool for removing lumps and can achieve a smoother finish.
The steps to follow are:
1. Prepare hot water at 80º in a cup, making sure that it has not reached boiling point, to obtain the best results.
Sieve 1-2 teaspoons of matcha into a cup with a small sieve.
3. Whisk vigorously in a zigzag motion until the tea is frothy.
4. Enjoy matcha tea quietly, it’s a moment for you.
With a mild grassy flavour, a creamy texture and a sweet umami taste, matcha is delicious not only as a beverage, but also as an ingredient. That’s why it’s often used in cooking as well. From matcha cakes to matcha ice cream, sweet or savoury matcha cakes and even matcha soup can be made.
However, the most common way of drinking it is still tea:
– Matcha only hot
– Matcha with ice
– Matcha with almond milk
– Matcha with rice milk
– Matcha with oat milk
– Matcha with honey
Drinking matcha as part of a healthy lifestyle of eating a diet that provides the body with the necessary nutrients, getting enough rest and regular exercise adds up to a long and fulfilling life.
However, due to the contraindications of tea for some people, it may be a good idea to turn to supplements as an alternative. Thanks to them, those who cannot drink matcha tea (due to its contraindications) but wish to enjoy its benefits, as well as anyone who wishes to multiply the benefits of this ancient drink, can choose the most beneficial for the body, such as those containing silica, the best supplement for its antioxidant power.