The health benefits of green tea have been studied and documented.
The source of these are the antioxidant and amino acid compounds found in the tea.
“Matcha” is the Japanese word for green tea.
In the Western world, there is a distinction of this particular type of green tea.
It’s All in the Way it’s Harvested
Matcha is green tea buds ground into a powder. The way in which it’s harvested serves to concentrate the nutrients, reserving its antioxidants to 137 times those in conventionally-harvested tea.
Up to three weeks before harvest, the tea plants are covered to gradually slow growth rate and promote the generation of amino acids. This makes the tea greener than conventional green tea.The tea buds are dried before being ground.
Catechins are the group of antioxidants found in tea, red grapes and wine, berries, apples, and chocolate. There are almost twice as many of these compounds in green tea than in black tea, which are the leaves of the tea shrub, rather than the buds used for matcha.
Antioxidants are Critical to Good Health
The significance of catechins is that they have been found to speed metabolism, leading to the burning of fat and reduction of LDL cholesterol, thereby reducing the risk of heart disease.
The green tea catechin has also been found to kill cancer cells, even in low doses. Matcha has also been found to arrest the progression of liver and kidney damage in diabetics .
Catechins reduce blood sugar levels by moderating the enzymes responsible for breaking down carbohydrates into glucose. These antioxidants also promote good digestion and healthy skin.
Antioxidants are important for our body’s chemistry in that they moderate oxidative stress in the body. Oxidative stress is the primary process that–unchecked–leads to improper cell function, resulting in sickness and disease. Matcha’s antioxidant benefit is therefore notable.
In addition, matcha contains the amino acid L-theanine. This protein building block is helpful in relaxing the mind and reducing stress, regulating cholesterol, preventing neurodegenerative conditions, and supporting anti-tumor activity.
Matcha is green because of the chlorophyll, making it a natural breath freshener and anti-inflammatory.
Try Something New
The flavor of matcha is unusual but delicious. It can be drunk as a straight tea or mixed with the milk or milk-substitute beverage of your choice (almond and coconut milks make it especially delicious). It can be added to smoothies, salads, and in baking.
It doesn’t take much of this healthful powder to have a positive impact.