Matcha has skyrocketed popularity lately, with matcha shots, lattes, tea, and even desserts that appear everywhere from health stores to coffee shops.
Like green tea, Matcha comes from Camellia Sinensis plants. However, it is different and has a unique nutrient profile.
Farmers grow Matcha by covering their tea plants 20-30 days before harvesting to avoid direct sunlight. This increases chlorophyll production, increases the content of amino acids, and gives darker green hue plants.
After tea leaves are harvested, the stem and vein are removed and the leaves are pounded into fine powder known as Matcha.
Matcha contains nutrients from all tea leaves, which produce a number of caffeine and antioxidants larger than those usually found in green tea.
Matcha studies and its components have explored various benefits, indicating that it can help protect the liver, improve heart health, and even help in weight loss.
Here are 7 health benefits of Matcha tea, all based on science.
1. High antioxidants
Matcha is rich in catechins, class of plant compounds in tea that act as natural antioxidants.
Antioxidants help stabilize harmful free radicals, which are compounds that can damage cells and cause chronic diseases.
When you add matcha powder to hot water to make tea, tea contains all nutrients from all over the leaves. It will tend to have more catechins and antioxidants than just adding green tea leaves in water.
In fact, with one estimate, certain number of catechins in Matcha up to 137 times greater than other types of green tea
One study shows that giving rats to increase supplements to reduce damage caused by free radicals and enhanced antioxidant activities
Including matcha in your diet can increase your antioxidant intake, which can help prevent cell damage and even reduce the risk of some chronic diseases
2. Can help protect the heart
The heart is very important for health and plays a central role in removing poisons, metabolism drugs, and processing nutrients.
Some studies have found that Matcha can help protect your heart's health.
One study gave Matcha diabetes mice for 16 weeks and found that it helped prevent damage to the kidneys and liver
Other studies gave 80 people with liver disease nonalcohol both placebo or 500 mg of green tea extract every day for 90 days.
After 12 weeks, green tea extract significantly reduces liver enzyme levels. This level of enzyme increases is the liver damage marker
Furthermore, analysis of 15 studies found that drinking green tea was associated with a reduced risk of liver disease
However, it is important to remember that there may be other factors involved in this relationship.
More research is needed to see the Matcha effect on the general population, because most studies are limited to research that examines the effects of green tea extract in animals.
3. Improve brain function
Some studies show that some components in MATCHA can help improve brain function.
One study at 23 people saw how people appeared in a series of tasks designed to measure brain performance.
Some participants consumed matcha tea or bar containing 4 grams of matcha, while the control group consumed placebo tea or bar.
The researchers found that Matcha caused improvements in attention, reaction time, and memory, compared to placebo
Another small study shows that consuming 2 grams of green tea powder every day for 2 months helps improve brain function in parents
In addition, Matcha contains a more concentrated caffeine than green tea, packaging in 35 mg caffeine per half teaspoon (about 1 gram) from powder Matcha.
Some studies have linked caffeine consumption to increased brain function, quoting a reaction time faster, increased attention, and improved memory
Matcha also contains a compound called L-theanine, which changes the effects of caffeine, promoting vigilance and helping to avoid accidents at the energy level that can take part in caffeine consumption
L-theanine has also been shown to increase alpha wave activity in the brain, which can help induce relaxation and reduce stress levels
4. Can help prevent cancer
Matcha is packed with compounds that promote health, including some of which have been linked to cancer prevention in test tubes and animal studies.
In one study, green tea extract lowers the size of the tumor and slows the growth of breast cancer cells in mice
Matcha is very high in epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), a type of catechin that has been shown to have strong anti-cancer properties.
One test tube study found that EGCG in Matcha helped kill prostate cancer cells
Other reaction tube studies have shown that EGCG is effective against the skin, lungs, and liver cancer
Keep in mind that this is a test tube and animal study that sees certain compounds found in Matcha. Further research is needed to determine how this result can be translated into humans.
5. Can promote heart health
Heart disease is the main cause of death throughout the world, accounting is estimated to be a third of all deaths in people over 35 years old
Some studies show that drinking green tea, which has a nutrient profile similar to Matcha, can help protect from heart disease.
Green tea has been shown to reduce total levels and "bad" LDL cholesterol, and triglycerides
It can also help prevent LDL cholesterol oxidation, other factors that can protect against heart disease
Observational studies also show that drinking green tea is associated with reduced risk of heart disease and stroke
When combined with a rounded diet and a healthy lifestyle, drinking matcha can help keep your heart healthy and protect against disease.
6. Helps you lose weight
Look at all weight loss supplements and there is a possibility that you will see "green tea extract" listed in the ingredients.
Green tea is famous for its ability to increase weight loss. In fact, research shows that it can help accelerate metabolism to increase energy expenditure and increase fat burning.
One small study shows that taking green tea extract during training is increasing fat burning by 17%
Another study of 14 people found that taking supplements containing green tea extract significantly increased 24-hour energy expenses, compared to placebo
Review 11 Research also shows that green tea reduces weight and helps maintain weight loss
Although most of these studies focus on green tea extract, Matcha comes from the same factory and must have the same effect.
7. Tea Matcha is very easy to prepare
Take advantage of many simple matcha health benefits - and tea tastes good.
You can make traditional matcha tea by filtering 1-2 teaspoons (2-4 grams) powder Matcha into your cup, adding 2 ounces (59 ml) hot water, and mix it along with a bamboo whisk.
You can also adjust the Matcha powder ratio to the water based on the consistency of your choice.
For thinner tea, reduce powder to half a teaspoon (1 gram) and mix with 3-4 ounces (89-118 ml) hot water.
If you prefer a more concentrated version, combine 2 teaspoons (4 grams) powder with only 1 ounce (30 ml) of water.
If you feel creative, you can even try to whip Matcha Lattes, Pudding, or Smoothie Proteins to increase your favorite recipe nutritional content.
As usual, moderation is a key. Even though Matcha is filled with health benefits, more is not necessarily better.
In fact, liver problems have been reported in some people who drink high amounts of green tea every day
Drinking Matcha can also increase your exposure to contaminants such as pesticides, chemicals, and even arsenic found on the soil where tea plants are planted
Matcha powder intake that can be tolerated maximum is not clear and depends on the individual. To be safe, make sure to consume Matcha in medium quantities.
The best is sticking with 1-2 cups per day and looking for certified organic varieties to utilize many health benefits without risking side effects.
The Bottom Line
Matcha comes from the same plant as green tea, but because it is made of all leaves, it is packing in the amount of more concentrated antioxidants and profitable plants compounds.
Research has revealed various health benefits related to Matcha and its components, ranging from increasing weight loss to reduce the risk of heart disease.
The best of all, the tea is simple to be prepared, so you can enter it easily into your diet and give your day extra taste.