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Matcha Mania – The Uses and Health Benefits of Matcha

By Marie-Antoinette Issa.

In recent years, matcha mania has gripped the world, wowing both culinary queens and kings, alongside wellness warriors with its vibrant green hue, distinct flavour and an impressive array of benefits for your body.

Originating from Japan, matcha is a finely ground powder made from specially grown and processed green tea leaves. However, beyond its use in traditional tea ceremonies, matcha has found its way into an array of culinary creations earning it the title of a superfood.

So, whether you’re a fitspo fan or foodie, it’s time to spill the tea and reveal some of the most popular uses and health benefits of matcha:

Matcha Mania – The Uses and Health Benefits of Matcha

All about antioxidants:

One of the most touted benefits of matcha is its high concentration of antioxidants, particularly catechins and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). These powerful compounds help to neutralise free radicals in the body, protecting cells from oxidative damage and reducing the risk of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.

Matcha contains significantly higher levels of antioxidants compared to other green teas, making it a potent ally in promoting overall health and well-being.

Boosting brain function:

Matcha contains a unique amino acid called L-theanine, which has been shown to promote relaxation and improve cognitive function. When combined with caffeine (also present in matcha but in smaller amounts compared to coffee), L-theanine can enhance alertness and focus without the jittery side effects often associated with caffeine consumption.

Matcha Mania – The Uses and Health Benefits of Matcha

This synergistic combination makes matcha an ideal choice for boosting mental clarity and productivity - minus the crash that can accompany too many mid-morning cappuccinos!

Weighing in on weight loss:

For those looking to shed a few extra kilos, matcha may offer some assistance. Studies have suggested that the catechins found in matcha can help to increase metabolism and promote fat oxidation, leading to greater calorie burning during exercise.

Additionally, matcha is low in calories and sugar, making it a healthier alternative to sugary beverages and snacks. Incorporating matcha into a balanced diet and exercise regimen may help to support weight loss efforts and improve overall body composition.

Sweet drinks and sweeter dreams:

In addition to its cognitive benefits, L-theanine in matcha also has a calming effect on the mind and body. This amino acid promotes the production of alpha waves in the brain, inducing a state of calm 

Matcha Mania – The Uses and Health Benefits of Matcha

Enjoying a warm cup of matcha tea can be a soothing ritual at the end of a long day, helping to unwind, de-stress and settle into a better sleep routine amidst the hustle and bustle of modern life.

Kitchen magic with matcha tea:

Beyond its health benefits, matcha is also prized for its versatility in the kitchen. Its vibrant green colour and earthy flavour make it a popular ingredient in a variety of sweet and savoury dishes, from lattes and smoothies to desserts and sauces.

Matcha can be incorporated into baked goods like cakes, cookies and muffins, adding a subtle green tea flavour and a boost of antioxidants. It can also be used to make matcha martinis, and even savoury dishes like matcha-glazed salmon or matcha avocado toast. (Minus the mortgage-crushings cost!)

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