I am a tea addict, and a lover of ritual. When I want a mindful start to the day or a refreshing pause on a busy afternoon, nothing is more satisfying than a giant cup of healthy and energizing matcha green tea.
Green tea is famous for its numerous health benefits – it is loaded with antioxidants, improves cholesterol, speeds up metabolism, decreases cancer risks, sharpens brain functions, and more! So what if I told you that drinking one cup of matcha tea is as good for you as drinking ten cups of regular green tea…?
The Scoop on Matcha
Matcha tea is a staple in Japanese tradition, and a nutritional powerhouse. Young leaves are picked from shade-grown green tea plants, which are then stemmed, steamed and ground into a fine powder of the most beautiful and vibrant shade of green. Consuming the green tea leaf in its entirety allows us to take advantage of all the leaf’s nutritional properties. This tea is the highest quality green tea you can get your hands on, and has been used as a health elixir for centuries. Here’s some of the goodness a cup of matcha tea can do for your body:
It is PACKED with these! Experts say more than a hundred times that of a regular green tea bag, especially ‘catechins’ which are known for their cancer fighting properties.
Increases Energy Levels
Matcha provides a cool ‘zenergy’ allowing you to feel simultaneously calm yet energized. It doesn’t give the same spike and crash of coffee, but rather a steady boost throughout the day. (Another bonus: it doesn’t give you bad breath or stain your teeth like coffee does!)
Matcha properties aid in the production of dopamine and serotonin. This makes you feel good, and improves memory and concentration. Clear thinking and a positive mind!
Speeds Up Metabolism
Matcha can help increase your metabolism and burn fat more efficiently…four times better than regular green tea! It does so without spiking your blood pressure or heart rate.
Detoxifies Your Body
Due to the way the plant is grown, matcha tea contains high levels of chlorophyll which help the tea cleanse your body.
Makes You Beau-TEA-ful
Those powerful catechins mentioned earlier have an anti-aging and skin smoothing effect. The tea’s anti-inflammatory properties make matcha a great face mask too, particularly for soothing acne, or rosacea. Just mix with a few drops of aloe vera or water to the powder and apply a small amount to your face!
Brew Some Zen
Don’t be fooled by it’s chalky appearance – this is not one of those healthy potions that have you grin and bear for the sake of a nutritional boost. The flavor is creamy and soothing, and you’ll soon be addicted to this powdered green tea!
Invest in a quality matcha, and scoop a flat teaspoon into a wide mug or even a small soup bowl. Add hot water – not boiling, and fill no more than 1/3 of the cup you’re brewing it in. With a bamboo whisk, stir a few times to get rid of any clumps, then whisk back and forth until a froth forms. Whisk some more, this time in a zig-zag pattern, so you can make it extra frothy and delicious. Top it up with water, let it cool, and enjoy! I find the process of making matcha meditative, and love to take my time with it.
Personally, I love matcha on it’s own, but it’s surprisingly versatile. You can mix water and almond milk, and add honey for a matcha latte, and you can even bake with the powder. There are endless way to incorporate this delicious and healthy tea into your life! Happy brewing!
Credits: Photos by Karolina Zych, illustrations & lettering by Linda Dieschbourg.