When it comes to drinks with health benefits, green tea has often been a popular choice. However, a closely related alternative that is growing in demand is matcha. Made from the same plant as green tea, matcha is shaded for about 30 days before the leaves are taken. After harvest, the leaves are dried and ground into a fine powder known as matcha. Though this bright green powder has a different nutrient profile than green tea, matcha’s health benefits are undeniable. From increased body function to preventative measures, discover all the reasons to include matcha powder in your diet below.
Reasons to Drink Matcha?
Lower blood pressure
Undoubtedly one of the most notable health benefits of matcha is the number of antioxidants each serving carries. Antioxidants are known to stabilize free radicals, which can harm the body. In particular, matcha powder is high in catechin, an antioxidant that lowers blood pressure and fights against heart disease. Though they come from the same plant, matcha carries a much more concentrated catechin dose than green tea, giving the body a more powerful boost against high blood pressure.
Flush out toxins
The high concentration of antioxidants in matcha powder also helps flush out harmful toxins from the body. Principally, studies have found that drinking matcha lowers the number of enzymes in the liver, which can lead to liver damage or even liver disease when left at high levels. Meanwhile, antioxidants also fight high cholesterol, which can cause a heart attack or stroke if untreated.
Protect your teeth
One of the more surprising health benefits of matcha is that this powder also fights acidity. Though it is normal for the mouth to maintain a level of acidity to help break down food, too much acid in the mouth can harm the enamel in your teeth. Matcha both lowers acidity levels in the mouth and carries fluoride in the powder that can strengthen teeth, providing another reason to drink matcha.
Improve brain function
Just like green tea, matcha powder contains a strong dose of caffeine that can improve brain function. Those that incorporate matcha regularly into their diet, especially in the morning hours, will likely experience better attention, more alertness, and even faster reaction times. For those new to caffeinated drinks, start with small amounts of matcha to avoid feeling jittery.
Finally, one key reason to drink matcha is that it has been proven to prevent several cancers. Matcha powder contains the compound epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which has been found to prevent and combat prostate, skin, and lung cancer in several studies. Scientists are continuing to study and test the full extent of the cancer-fighting properties of matcha.