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Matcha Tea and Its Health Benefits
While people drank green tea in China more more than one thousand years ago, it became an essential part of the Japanese culture. And they named the natural beverage matcha. Zen Buddhist monks took it to maintain calm and alertness during extended hours of meditation. Growing in the shade, these Japanese tea leaves have particularly 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 has potent antioxidants known as catechins, which hunt for dangerous free radicals existing in the body. Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a very potent anti-carcinogen, is the most effective catechin contained in green tea.
One of the places in the globe where people have the longest lifespans is Okinawa, Japan. The Okinawan people’s longevity has been attributed in part to consistent matcha green tea consumption.
Matcha green tea is actually Japan’s most popular green tea, but it is becoming more popular than ever throughout the globe, thanks to its ability to neutralize oxidation and inflammation, and even aging.
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.
As matcha is grows in the shade, it has substantially higher concentrations of chlorophyll compared to all other green teas. Chlorophyll, responsible for the green color in leaves, has detoxifying properties.
Compared to conventional green tea, matcha green tea offers up to 5 times more L-theanine. L-theanine is an amino acid that can induce alpha wave activity in the brain. Stress is known to trigger the brain’s beta wave activity, causing a more agitated state. Alpha wave activity produces the exact opposite effect. Matcha does have some caffeine, but its “jittery” effects are easily neutralized by relaxing 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.
Finally, matcha green tea leaves are known to have vast amounts of easily-absorbable dietary fiber. Dietary fiber offers plenty of benefits, the most popular of which are blood sugar management and constipation relief.
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