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Magical Matcha

Magical Matcha

November 18, 20236 min read

WHAT IS MATCHA?

Matcha is finely ground green tea leaves, containing a wealth of magical benefits.

You've probably heard about how great green tea is for the body and mind, but since matcha is a more potent variation of green tea, with a bigger bang-for-your-buck outcome, I'm going to be focusing on matcha for the moment. 

Even though green tea carries similar beneficial effects, it's worth mentioning that 1 cup (8 oz) of matcha is generally equivalent to 8-10 cups (64-80 oz) of green tea.

There are SO many benefits to matcha (and green tea) that have been documented.  Because I don’t want this blog to turn into a 35-page paper, I’ll do my best to summarize and keep it straightforward.

For all you visual folk (like me!), below is a splendid graphic from Molecules Journal that illustrates the copious benefits of matcha.

Read the full study from Molecules


Now let’s check out the amazing advantages of consuming matcha...

BENEFITS

  • Super duper rich in L-Theanine (more info on that later) ⇦ you don’t want to miss that!

  • Stimulates Alpha Brain waves — giving you a calm, hyper-focused feeling

  • Insanely high in catechins (which are basically “super-antioxidants“)

  • Caffeine and L-Theanine in matcha work together to balance out the jitters you’d get from coffee/other caffeine beverages, while still boosting your energy with 65 mg of caffeine, similar to that of an espresso shot, but in a massively more profitable way for your body and mind

  • Increases dopamine in the brain, via L-Theanine

  • Anti-inflammatory

  • Anti-cancer: high ORAC score (more about that below) ⇦ again, you GOTTA read that

  • For gut health:

    • Reduces inflammatory cytokines, which are proteins that cause leaky gut.

    • Increases glucose and lipid absorption, which translates to you absorbing your food better.

  • For heart health:

    • Reduces oxidative stress/other stress-response proteins in the vascular system

    • Reduces inflammatory pathways

    • Strengthens blood vessels

    • Heart disease = #1 killer in America.  It could be something worth attempting to (naturally) prevent.


MATCHA FOR LIVER HEALTH

I wanted to separate this so I can really drive home the importance of healthy liver function.  

Your liver cleanses, detoxes, regulates, protects, and by and large HEALS you every moment of every day.  If your liver isn’t functioning properly, so much of your body — metabolism, hormones, circulation, immune system, skin, blood sugar, and digestion, just to name a few — will all be compromised in some way or another.  

It’s safe to say that most of us are aware of the crazy-harmful effects alcohol has on our liver — be it one drink every now and then or 10-50+ years of nightly beers or glasses of wine.  I’m 100% not saying to stop consuming alcohol, at all.  However, it's important to be aware that every time we drink, we’re doing more harm than good for our bodies… though our spirits (pun intended) may be having a grand ol’ time playing and feeling.  Consider using this magical, healing, natural elixir as a supportive ally for your liver (and the rest of your bodily systems).

Dr. Christian Gonzalez has a one-minute clip on Instagram, HERE, from his matcha/gut and liver health podcast episode that explains the importance of matcha/green tea to combat alcohol’s harmful consequences.

Remember, the liver is also negatively affected by refined sugars (which, spoiler alert, are hidden in practically everything), so even if you’re a sober party animal, all of our livers could really use some assistance.


MORE STATS

CAFFEINE BREAKDOWN:

  • Matcha has ~65 mg of caffeine per cup

  • Green tea has ~30 mg of caffeine per cup

  • Regular coffee has 90-200 mg of caffeine per cup

  • Espresso has 60-80 mg of caffeine per cup

L-THEANINE

Although matcha contains more caffeine than green tea, it is balanced with a beautiful amino acid, L-Theanine.  This is what gives you the “relaxed alertness” you feel when sipping on a matcha drink.  I LOVE coffee, don’t get me wrong.  It’s a marvelous cup of happiness that I consume every morning, but there are often side effects from the intensity of the caffeine that people feel that wouldn’t be felt as much (if at all) if it was paired with L-Theanine in the way matcha is.  

Even with all the ecstatic, mood-boosting effects of coffee, do you ever notice your breathing getting shallower?  How about your heart rate increasing in a not-so-positive way? 

What if there was an alternative?  One (like matcha) that opens, enlivens, heals, and enhances the body + mental cognition, just by its nature.  I’m not saying to ditch your fav caffeinated beverages altogether, but consider adding matcha into your (ideally) daily items to consume. Instead of that second (or third, or fourth) cup of coffee in the late morning or early afternoon, try opting for matcha instead!  Or, if you don't love the taste of matcha, make a strong green tea.

HIGH ORAC SCORE

“ORAC” stands for Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity –  the amount of free radicals that can be absorbed by the matcha, in this case, and namely by EGCG (green tea catechin, or “super-antioxidant”). When we think of foods that are rich in antioxidants, one that often pops up in our brains first is berries!

Blueberries contain an ORAC score of 24. Cool.

Matcha, on the other hand, has an ORAC score of 1384. EXCUSE ME? That’s some rockstar-level free-radical-fighting power!

NOTES

* GO ORGANIC. SERIOUSLY. I could write a whole other blog about why organic is such a must for this, but I won’t (yet..?). Just trust me on it, or do your own research.

* BEST BRANDS I’VE FOUND (both are very sustainable, clean, and transparent in their certifications/testing results): Encha Organic Matcha (sold on Amazon, if that floats your convenience boat) and Pique Tea.


TO CLOSE…

matcha

When you make your matcha, make it a ritual, a ceremony, a celebration –  not just because you’ve heard of a “matcha ceremony,” but because you are doing right by your body!  There is an abundance of magical healing and a wealth of goodness going into each system of your body, and that is something to celebrate!  

When we are mindful about something, we tend to have a more tangible, more potent outcome from your intentional experience.  Whether it’s your visualization/gratitude practice for the life you desire, or seeing, tasting, and embracing every ingredient in your meal, knowing each item holds its own special healing properties –  when you slow down, pay attention, and truly feel gratitude for what’s in front of you (or what you’re chewing/sipping on), I believe our bodies feel that and respond magically.

You are giving your body an agent of magnificent healing, energy, pleasure, and ease when you sip on a matcha (or green tea), so FEEL IT!  Thank your body for every time it’s naturally healed you in the past — even when you didn’t think it could or didn’t know it was happening.  Give an appreciative smile and nod to your forever-devotional bod, since it does so much for you, every moment of every day, without asking for a “thank you.” 

MatchaGreen TeaAntioxidantsMatcha CeremonyWellnessYogaAyurvedaRelaxation
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