Green tea has always been known as a healthy beverage, but a special variety called matcha is growing in popularity as one of the most beneficial drinks for your health. If you’re curious about what matcha tea is and why it’s a new trend for tea drinkers, we’ve compiled the answers you need.
What Is Matcha Tea?
Matcha is a type of green tea made by grinding young tea leaves into a bright green powder. Unlike traditional green tea, which is steeped in water and then removed, matcha powder is whisked into the water itself. Matcha leaves are grown on green tea bushes that are kept in the shade, which increases the leaves’ chlorophyll content–this element is what gives the leaves their bright green color and additional nutrients. When drinking traditional green tea, you are able to get some of the nutrients but usually throw most of them away with the bag–matcha tea allows you to reap the enormous benefits of drinking the whole tea leaves.
Benefits of Matcha Tea
Like many green teas, matcha contains a class of antioxidants called catechins. The abundance of catechins gives matcha the highest antioxidant rating of all major superfoods, with 13 times the antioxidants of pomegranates and 15 times the antioxidants of blueberries. One specific catechin, called EGCg, makes up a large percentage of the catechins in matcha green tea and has been studied for its cancer-fighting effects and promotion of brain and heart health. Additionally, matcha has a combination of naturally occurring caffeine and l-theanine, an amino acid found in tea, that gives you the extra boost of energy you’re looking for without the usual jittery side effects. Tea drinkers credit matcha for a variety of other health benefits, such as clean skin, reduced mental and physical stress, increased concentration, lower cholesterol, better oral health, and even weight loss.
Matcha Tea and Weight Loss
Even though the study of matcha and its benefits is still in its infancy, the chemical makeup of matcha may help promote weight loss. Matcha’s catechin EGCg increases cholecystokinin, the hormone responsible for making you feel full. For people trying to lose weight, a cup of matcha tea between meals can be a great substitute for snacking and overeating. Similarly, the catechin EGCg works together with caffeine to naturally boost your metabolism and increase the number of calories you burn. Take an extra sip of matcha tea before your workout to boost metabolism and push yourself to your full potential.
Next time some bright green matcha catches your eye, consider giving it a try to see how it can benefit your weight loss goals and promote a healthy lifestyle. Relax with a cup of one the healthiest drinks on the planet now that matcha tea is transforming from just a leaf into a healthy lifestyle.