Health Perks Offered by Matcha Tea
Though people drank green tea in China over a thousand years ago, it became a significant part of the Japanese culture. They called the tea matcha. Zen Buddhist monks took it to maintain calm and alertness during extended hours of meditation. These Japanese tea leaves grow in the shade and have notably high chlorophyll content.
The tea’s background and cultivation is interesting, but what counts the most to consumers is its health benefits, the most important of which include:
Green tea is abundant in antioxidants named catechins, which scavenge for harmful free radicals that may exist in the body. Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a very potent anti-carcinogen, is the most effective catechin contained in green tea.
Okinawa, Japan is one of those parts of the world where people live the longest. The Okinawans’ longevity has been somewhat attributed to habitual matcha green tea consumption.
In fact, matcha green tea is the most popular green tea in all of Japan, although it is rapidly becoming more popular across the world due to its anti-inflammatory, ant-oxidizing and anti-aging properties.
LDL “Bad” Cholesterol Control
Based on a study featured in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2011, green tea beverages or extracts dramatically lessen total serum cholesterol and LDL cholesterol concentrations.
According to a 1999 study featured in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, green tea increases thermogenesis – your body’s day-to-day calorie-burning rate -increases by 8 to 35%. Yet another study proved that exercising right after drinking matcha green tea can lead to 25% more fat loss during exercise.
Since matcha is grown in the shade, it has significantly higher amounts of chlorophyll than any other green tea. Chlorophyll gives leaves their green color and provides detoxification against all kinds of toxins.
Compared to conventional green tea, matcha green tea offers up to 5 times more L-theanine. L-theanine, an amino acid, has the ability to induce alpha wave activity in the brain. Stress is a known cause of beta wave activity in the brain, leading to a more distressed state. Alpha wave activity fights such effect. Matcha does contain some caffeine, but its “jittery” effects are easily counterbalanced by the relaxing properties of L-theanine.
Drink a cup of matcha green tea to get that an afternoon “pick-me-up” or whenever you need a little more focus and alertness. Matcha green tea is the best substitute for coffee as it offers an energy boost without those coffee crash-related headaches.
Lastly, matcha green tea leaves have a considerably high level of easily-absorbable dietary fiber. Dietary fiber offers many benefits, but it is mostly known for providing constipation relief and blood sugar management.
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