Matcha, matcha, matcha!
You’re probably seeing it everywhere, but have you tried it? Is it yet another passing trend popular with today’s hipsters and weight loss fanatics, or is there actually something super beneficial about it?
WHAT IS MATCHA?
Matcha literally means “powdered tea” and when you drink it, you are ingesting the entire green tea leaf, as opposed to steeping the leaves and removing them. So basically one cup of matcha is about equal to ten cups of regularly brewed green tea in terms of nutritional content, and has 137 times more antioxidants than the regularly brewed tea.
WHAT ARE THE HEALTH BENEFITS?
it’s packed full of antioxidants, fiber, & chlorophyll
provides Vitamin C, chromium, selenium, magnesium, & zinc
calms the mind & body
lowers cholesterol & blood sugar
helps prevent disease
[just to name a few…….]
So basically, it’s really fracking good for you and worth a try.
I also came across this article – The 8 Wonders Of Matcha Green Tea, which further describes some of the benefits I listed, as well as a couple extra:
1- cancer preventer
3- Lowers LDL “Bad” Cholesterol
4- weight loss
6- mind improver
“A 1999 study featured in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition demonstrated that green tea extract rich in catechins has thermogenic properties and promotes fat oxidation beyond that explained by the tea’s caffeine content.
It was found that consuming green tea increased thermogenesis (the body’s rate of burning calories) from 8-10% to 35-43% of daily energy expenditure.
Another study demonstrated that exercising immediately after drinking matcha green tea resulted in 25% more fat burning during exercise.
Both studies suggest matcha green tea can enhance both resting metabolic rate and fat burning – can I get an Amen?!”
And after spending a prolonged period of time drinking it, I’ve found I feel better, mentally calmer, and physically more energetic than I do without it. Even my skin looks a bit brighter [it’s true what they say about antioxidants].
But during this time drinking and reading about it, I began to notice a difference in the kinds of matcha teas out there, from ceremonial grade, to food grade and ingredient grade… like, what is this crap??
High vs Low Quality
And then I found this article from The Daily Tea – High vs Low Quality Matcha? 5 Easy Tips to Know the Difference. Basically it comes down to origin, price, color, taste, and feel.
“When it comes to color, look for a really vibrant green. The greener the better! Matcha is shade-grown; in this way, the tea leaves are forced to overproduce chlorophyll, which gives matcha its nice bright green color. Lower quality matcha, by comparison, tends to be made up of leaves that have not been properly shaded, or that may be older and/or harvested from lower on the stalk of the plant; and therefore the color will be yellowish/brownish in hue.”
It’s a really helpful article that will ensure you know you’re getting a high-quality product.
Even if it’s top grade, is it worth it or should I pass?
Go back and read about the benefits. Read up on the cultivation. Do your homework. Then give it a try [more than once, please], and come back and tell me what you think.
Don’t listen to the hipsters, the hippies, the trendy lifestyle bloggers- live a little and try it for yourself. It’s the only way you’ll ever know.
[And if nothing else, understand I cultivated this article with the bias that yes, matcha is awesome, and I think everyone, literally everyone, should give it a try in one form or another. And if you don’t like tea, there are plenty of amazing recipes out there, so you have no excuse!]
How do you feel about matcha?
And do you have any recipes you’d like to share?