Despite being the superfood of 2016, it’s consistently surprising how many people have yet to try Matcha. Maybe it’s the color- green isn’t known for being the most appetizing- or the fact that most people can’t get away from their daily coffee fix, but it’s still far too niche for how many positive health benefits it provides. Holistic nutritionist Kelly LeVeque goes into more detail, below. Take it away, Kelly!

Why Matcha?

Matcha has become popular in the health and wellness space because it is higher in antioxidants, chlorophyll and caffeine compared to other green teas. It’s full of antioxidants that protect the body against oxidative stress and cell damage, and it is an excellent source of epigallocatechin gallate, or EGCG, a superfood antioxidant that promotes cardiovascular and metabolic health. Matcha has also been linked to improving post exercise recovery.

Is it caffeinated?

Matcha is a natural energy booster that has three times the caffeine as normal steeped green tea. It has been shown to combat chronic fatigue and is a great source of the amino acid L-theanine, which is important for alertness and cognitive function.

So, will I have a ‘caffeine crash’ after drinking Matcha?

A 2015 study showed that L-theanine increases attention and overall mood when compared to other forms of caffeine. It stimulates the mind without inducing drowsiness, unlike the latte crash that some experience midmorning.

Does it make a difference whether I drink it hot or cold?

No, either works!  Matcha’s leaves don’t dissolve; it’s a powder and therefore can be blended into cold milk or a smoothie, or whisked in hot water.

Why should you avoid using dairy products with Matcha?

If you add milk to tea, the casein protein in milk binds catechins (the antioxidants present in tea), and makes them unavailable to the body. The best non-dairy option is almond milk or coconut milk.

Does the type of Matcha you use matter?

The highest quality Matcha is sourced from Japan and is 100% pure leaf. Also the greener the Matcha, meaning the higher the chlorophyll content, the better.

Does price matter?

Yes. One concern with green tea in the health space is that more often than not, it contains traces of lead. However, this chance is small, especially with Japanese tea, including Matcha. It is important to be aware of the contaminants found in any green tea and to buy organic, higher quality (meaning higher priced), Matcha tea whenever possible.

Any other benefits?

Studies have confirmed that Matcha aids the body in lowering blood glucose levels and triglyceride levels. Sustained blood glucose levels in a normal range allows your body to burn more fat, balance hormones and keeps your energy levels high.

The Be Well Smoothie was created to help you stay full for 4-6 hours without needing to snack and easily keeps you in the fat burning range. Adding Matcha elevates your #bewellsmoothie with flavor, antioxidants and L-theanine to energize your morning without the sugar, insulin and caffeine that can make you tired or inflamed.

Mean Matcha Smoothie

– 1 Serving Vanilla Protein Powder
– 1-2 tbsp MCT or Coconut Oil
– 1-2 tbsp. Chia Seeds
– Handful of Spinach
– 2-3 cup nut milk (i.e. almond milk)
– 1 tsp Panatea Matcha

Directions:
Place all ingredients in a high-powered blender and blend to desired consistency.

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Credits

Photography
Kelly LaVeque