Since I’ve been in Japan there has been some matcha tea in my life. There is great tradition with the drink here (it’s an actual ceremony), and just like in the States, you can find all forms of matcha goodies. It’s as great to bake with as it is drink.
Like all of the other teas I love, matcha has many health benefits, but what makes the powdered green tea stand out is how elevated those benefits are. For example, you would have to drink about 10 cups of green tea to be equivalent to the antioxidant intake you’d get from sipping on one cup of matcha. That’s because you’re actually drinking ground green tea leaves when you’re consuming the frothy beverage. So what other incredible facts do you need to know to get on board with matcha? These should do the trick.
First, lets talk about those antioxidants. Matcha has more antioxidants than blueberries, pomegranate, goji berries, spinach, the list goes on…matcha is basically the king of superfoods. The main antioxidant, catechins, helps our body fight against disease, keeps metabolism in check and is known for having anti-aging properties.
There is also a very high concentrate of chlorophyll in the tea. You might remember the green goodness from science class–it’s what gives plants its color–but it’s so much more when it comes to consumption. Chlorophyll helps detoxify the body, aids digestion, has been known to banish body odors (like bad breath) and helps the body heal faster. You can drink liquid chlorophyll diluted in water, but why not enjoy a warm tea and get your daily dose of the health aid?
And a tea that helps you concentrate? Yes please. Matcha is rich in amino acids, especially L-Theanine. L-Theanine relaxes the body, leaving you with an alert calmness that can actual heighten your concentration without making you drowsy. Because matcha, like all green teas, has caffeine in it, this is critical. You can enjoy the beverage without getting that buzzed feeling you experience from too much coffee. And because of the relaxed, centered state associated with the tea, it’s been used in meditation for centuries. I don’t think I need to get into the benefits of meditation here, you all already know I’m a frequent practitioner.
One thing to keep in mind is that you should always consider the quality of your matcha. A high quality product will deliver the most benefits and is likely more pure. Mizuba Tea Company, Kenko and Encha make delicious options–Mizuba even offers culinary grade matcha and Encha fulfills you “need my drink on the go” lovers with single serve packets. Score!
Do you drink matcha? Or have you baked with it? Let me know what you’re making.