Matcha tea is gaining popularity throughout the world in recent years and is frequently referred to as a Super Food. More and more often, we're finding it has been added to food products to improve nutritional value.
So what are the health benefits of matcha? And does it live up to the hype?
Matcha is green tea which has been ground up to a powder consistency. Traditionally used in tea ceremonies in Japan, there has been significant claims made about its health benefits since hitting the Australian market a few years ago.
There is some evidence that matcha green tea provides a more concentrated dose of these antioxidants, and as such, it may provide increased health benefits when compared to other types of green tea. It is important to note that at present, there are a limited number of high quality studies which specifically look at the health benefits of matcha.
Matcha is known to be rich in certain compounds, such as epigallocatechin, and L-theanine, an amino acid found in tea. L-theanine may improve relaxation, tension, and calmness.
Matcha is also rich in caffeine. Caffeine can improve performance, attention, memory, focus, and alertness. Some studies of green tea have shown it may protect against liver and kidney damage, and the catechins in green tea may assist with reducing blood pressure and fat levels in the blood.
So much it’s popularity, a recent research study was published which looked into the health benefits of matcha when added to food. The study showed that when consumed as tea or added to snack bars, matcha could induce slight effects on speed of attention and episodic secondary memory to a low degree. Further research has been encouraged, particularly as the results of the study were not as positive as expected.
Some delicious ways to include matcha in your diet?
1. Blue Dinosaur - Matcha Greens Super Bite
Made from coconut, coconut oil, matcha, spirulina, dates and barley grass, this little bite is a nutrient and energy dense snack.
2. Matcha Maiden - Tea/Powder
One of the most well known matcha products, Matcha Maiden is ceremonial grade matcha powder, which can be used to make your matcha tea, or your own home made matcha-rich treats!
3. Rebel Kitchen - Matcha Drink
A drink made from water, coconut milk, date nectar and matcha, this delicious drink doesn’t contain refined sugar, suitable for many food intolerances (such as wheat, dairy, soy, egg and nuts) and is low in calories as well.
4. The Fit Foodie - Matcha Bliss Ball Mix
Bliss balls are a favourite snack, and the Fit Food Matcha Bliss Balls are one of the tastiest ones on the market.
5. Bare Blends - Japanese Matcha WPI
A delicious blend of matcha, vanilla bean and whey protein isolate. This protein powder is fab for supporting healthy exercise recovery, and tastes delicious as well!