All you need to know about matcha green tea powder and caffeine
…And why many people are swapping their daily coffee for a matcha green tea.
Matcha green tea has been used as a drink to enhance energy and concentration for over 800 years in Japanese culture, and today it’s becoming increasingly popular in Australia too. Not only are there heaps of health benefits, but it also enhances energy and concentration.
There are three main reasons for this:
1. With matcha, there is a slower absorption of caffeine which gives you a longer energy boost.
When you drink matcha you receive an incredibly high level of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals as well as a long and steady release of caffeine.
The caffeine is absorbed and released slowly by the body over a period of 6-8 hours. This means that matcha provides a sustainable energy boost without the rapid 30-minute spike, energy slump, sleepless nights, and “jitters” associated with coffee.
2. Matcha tea contains theanine, which releases that ‘zen’ feeling.
Tea is the only plant that makes the amino acid theanine. And because matcha plantations are shaded before harvest, matcha contains the highest concentration of theanine. Theanine is known for its ability to increase alpha waves in the brain and promote calmness and alert concentration, giving matcha users a great “zen” state. Controlled experiments have shown that theanine has a positive effect on the mind and improves memory by increasing dopamine levels. Additionally, the alpha brain waves increase 40 minutes after a person consumes theanine, making this a great drink for students or professionals.
3. It’s full of vitamins and minerals, and contains 137x the antioxidants of standard green tea.
Matcha provides 3.25mg of calcium, 1.85mg of vitamin C, 20.5mg of potassium and 274mg of protein per serving amidst other vitamins and antioxidants that outnumber superfoods like goji and acai berries. If you compare that to what you’d get from a tea bag – one bowl of matcha is equivalent to approximately 10 cups of regular green tea. That is because matcha powder uses the entire green tea leaf, instead of just dipping the leaf in hot water which provides only around 10% of the plant’s nutrients.
Although both matcha and coffee stimulate alertness, matcha releases caffeine over time and its high concentration of theanine means that the caffeine is better harnessed to promote focus and concentration.
If you’re interested in swapping your regular latte or tea for a matcha recipe, here are a couple of recipes to get you started:
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