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Matcha Health Benefits

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Matcha Health Benefits

Kaitlin Ryan, The Carroll News

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Does your daily routine require a caffeine fix, but you need a break from the heart-rate increasing, teeth staining, addictive beverage that is coffee? Then matcha, the Japanese finely-ground green tea, may be the solution for you.

Traditionally, matcha powder is whisked with hot water until frothy, creating a tea that has been served for centuries. You can enjoy a sweeter version of the green tea powder by indulging in Starbucks’ Matcha Green Tea Latte, adding it to your smoothie or mixing it into yogurt.

Matcha can be expensive, but the ways in which this rich substance benefits your health may be worth the cost. Plus, the powder is much more concentrated than a traditional loose-leaf tea, so a small amount goes a long way. Here are some of the health benefits of drinking matcha:

Packed with Antioxidants

Many health beverages claim to be filled with antioxidants, but what does this actually mean? Rachael Link, a registered dietician, said in an article for Healthline.com, “Antioxidants help stabilize harmful free radicals, which are compounds that can damage cells and cause chronic disease.” According to MatchaSource.com, one cup of matcha tea contains the same amount of antioxidants as 10 cups of regular brewed green tea. Frequently consuming matcha will pack your body with more of these chemical compounds that help in disease prevention and cell protection.

Filled with Chlorophyll

Matcha gets its slight ‘grassy’ taste from the high amounts of chlorophyll it contains. Chlorophyll is the pigment that gives both plants and matcha their green color. This natural substance benefits the human body just as much as it supports plants. According to Healthline.com, chlorophyll rids the body of toxins, prevents cancer, reduces inflammation and neutralizes odor.

Drinking matcha gives you the stimulating benefits of caffeine, without the lingering smell of coffee!

Energy Booster

A half teaspoon of matcha contains 30–35 milligrams of caffeine, while eight fluid ounces of coffee contain about 95 milligrams. Matcha contains enough of the energy-boosting stimulant to give you energy without the jittery, anxious aftermath of coffee. The effect of caffeine in matcha creates a more relaxed, energized feeling.

Mood Enhancer

Not only does matcha help your physical health, it also promotes a state of mental well-being, according to MatchaSource.com. Matcha contains an amino acid called L-theanine, which is known to calm the mind. Buddhist monks drank matcha to assist in meditation. Consuming the tea creates a relaxed, yet alert feeling, which is helpful in meditation and recentering yourself.

Upon first sip, matcha has a unique, vegetal taste. The aftertaste smoothly transforms into a more sweet, creamy flavor. Matcha’s taste may be acquired, but the health benefits can be enjoyed by anyone as the taste grows on you. It is the perfect addition to a morning shake.

 

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