Dating back thousands of years, matcha has a deep rooted culture and history. Japanese monk Eisai brought the idea of what is now known as matcha from China to Japan sometime between the 10th and 12th century.
Matcha is a finely ground powder made from specially grown green tea leaves of the Camellia Sinensis tea plant. During the farming process matcha (or tencha) leaves are carefully shaded before being harvested to enhance the plant's natural chlorophyll levels. This green biological pigment gives matcha its bright green and vibrant colour, and also helps distinguish between different grades of matcha. Before being steamed, the tencha leaves are fully stemmed and de-veined to ensure only nutrient rich material is making its way into the powder. The tencha leaves are then carefully ground down to form matcha powder.
Considered a ‘superfood’ by many, matcha is packed with hidden benefits, including:
Antioxidants, lots of them.
Antioxidants occur naturally in plant-based foods such as fruits and vegetables. There are thousands of antioxidant compounds out there including vitamins A, C, and catechins. Antioxidants help or prevent cell damage caused by oxidants. (Get it? Antioxidants.) Matcha is full of antioxidants and has exponentially more than any other healthy foods out there including goji berries, blueberries, leafy greens, dark chocolate and nuts.
A potent dose of EGCG.
Of the many compounds found in matcha, EGCG (Epigallocatechin Gallate) is one of the most unique and beneficial antioxidants out there. EGCG contains metabolism boosting properties which can be associated with weight loss and management. It also contains strong anti-inflammatory attributes that can be linked to improved cardiovascular health.
Matcha green tea is an incredible source of the amino acid L-Theanine. Many studies suggest that supplementing L-Theanine in your diet can promote relaxation, reduced stress, and increased mental alertness. This is why high quality matcha is often used in tea ceremonies and has been historically used in meditation practices in Japan. This amino acid works hand-in-hand with the small amounts of caffeine that are native to matcha green tea to give you natural boost of long-lasting energy.
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