Matcha Madness

Reviewed: April 01, 2015
By eHealthIQ
Matcha Madness

Matcha is a traditional Japanese product with a history that spans thousands of years. It is known for its high quality and numerous health benefits. Matcha is made from green tea, but it undergoes special selection and processing. It starts out as the young, nutritious top leaves of Camellia sinensis plants that are grown in the shade. Next, these leaves are delicately steamed and their stems and veins removed.

The leaves are then dried and stone-ground to make the fine, bright-green powder that is Matcha. The final product is kept away from oxygen and light, ensuring optimal quality, freshness and antioxidant levels. Today, Matcha is becoming a popular superfood around the world, and for several very good reasons.

Antioxidant-Rich

Everyone loves antioxidants. These are the amazing substances found in foods that slow the aging process, ward off disease, support the immune system and suppress inflammation. Many people seek antioxidants from things like fresh produce and cacao. However, while these foods are healthy, they can’t hold a candle to the antioxidant power of Matcha. In one serving of Matcha, you get five times more antioxidants than from nearly anything else.

Excellent Source of EGCG and Catechin

Of course, there are many types of antioxidants, and some are more beneficial than others. Matcha is an excellent source of antioxidants called catechins, some of the most powerful antioxidants currently known. A specific substance in this group, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCg), comprises around 60 percent of Matcha’s catechin content, about 100 times more than other teas. EGCG is particularly highly regarded for its anticancer properties.

Promotes Relaxation

Matcha tea has long been used by Eastern monks to allow them to meditate while still maintaining their alertness. These days, we know that L-theanine, an amino acid, is to thank for Matcha’s relaxing yet stimulating properties. L-theanine encourages the brain to enter an alpha wave state, which is known to cause relaxation without sleepiness or sedation.

Improves Cognitive Function

As it turns out, this superfood is also brain food. The L-theanine in Matcha does much more than just help you feel calm. It also causes your brain to produce more serotonin and dopamine. These neurotransmitters are largely responsible for your ability to feel happiness, contentment and pleasure. However, they also promote improvements in concentration, memory and executive function.

Boosts Energy and Enhances Endurance

Legend has it that ancient Japanese samurai consumed Matcha before every battle to take advantage of its energy-boosting benefits. Although Matcha contains caffeine like all true teas, that actually has little to do with it. It’s the nutrients in Matcha that are to be credited for this superfood’s effects on energy levels. The energy boost from a serving of Matcha can last for around six hours. However, because L-theanine directly counteracts caffeine’s less pleasant effects, you’ll experience no jitteriness, restlessness or anxiety.

Although loose-leaf green tea is nutritious and contains some antioxidants, it’s no longer the star of the show. Now, more people are turning to pure, wholesome Matcha powder as their superfood of choice. Thanks to its reliably high quality, easy availability, pleasant flavor, cost-effectiveness and incredible antioxidant content, Matcha is a great way for anyone to live a healthier life.

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