Based on the recent studies carried out by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a third of the American adult population are obese based on the weight and height statistics? However, other studies suggest that obesity and weight-related issues such as those of metabolic syndrome, is a global health crisis. Although there might be many environmental and genetic factors that predispose people to excessive weight gains and obesity, an imbalance between dietary intakes and energy expenditures has been named as the major causative agent of obesity concerns. Excessive fat builds within the body mass over a period just from slight positive energy imbalances, when we take more calories than our bodies need.
There are so many strategies outlined by various nutritionists and health physicians used to curb obesity and weight gains, including;
The Dietary Role of Matcha Green Tea in Weight Loss
Matcha is very low in calories and kilojoules, while at the same time being high in its protein and fiber content. The mild dose of caffeine content is very effective in fat loss since caffeine is a powerful suppressant of appetite. Matcha is extremely high in catechins especially EGCG, which helps in stabilizations of the blood sugar levels by increasing the rate of fat oxidation, an internal process which burns fat so as to create energy for normal functioning of the body system while also acting as a natural detoxifier due to its chlorophyll content.
It’s also high in polyphenols, flavonoids Vitamins A.B-complex, E, C and K, amino acids and other nutrients such as potassium and zinc. All these antioxidants (polyphenols, flavonoids and catechins) and nutrients make Matcha an exceptional anti-inflammatory aid. Inflammations have been long associated with weight gains, thus matcha can serve as significant factors in any weight loss efforts. However, due to its high content of the EGCG antioxidant, matcha green tea has been widely adopted for therapeutic treatments and prevention of excessive weight gains, obesity and diabetes.
Specific Ways in Which Matcha Aids in Weight Loss
A study carried out by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition’s shows that the green tea extract is highly rich in EGCg (epigallocatechin gallate) catechins which has thermogenic properties and increases the rate of fat oxidation. Consuming matcha green tea increases thermogenesis (the production of heat by the human body by calories burning) from the 10 % of normal energy expenditure to about 40% of the daily energy expenditures. Other studies indicate that matcha green tea’s content of catechins and caffeine stimulate the nervous systems which in turn increases thermogenesis and oxidation of fat.
Matcha is extremely rich in Chlorophyll, a natural detoxifier that cleanses the human body from the accumulations of toxins, thus boosting the rate of metabolisms and effective weight loss. The cleaner your body is, the faster the rate of calories conversion to energy is. Chlorophyll is a blood cleanser that helps to maintain and balance the body’s pH, transports oxygen and removes CO2 from the body tissues and cells.
The human body constantly burns calories even at rest since our cells are in constant motions performing millions of function which require energy. Several studies suggest that the catechins and enzymes present in the Matcha green tea increase the rate of metabolism. Rick Hursel of Maastricht University published a review that shows how green tea increases the energy expenditures (the total amount of calories we burn) and fat oxidation.
The natural occurring caffeine in Matcha and the unique L-Theanine amino acid it contains creates a much calmer sustainable energy and alertness for up to six hours making it an ideal weight loss aid since the body does not get easily release of fatigued. They work together to produce a gradual and consistent energy by creating a bond with different nutrients in the body such that they enter into the body system in a time-released manner. L-Theanine works with caffeine to deliver a gradual and consistent release of energy. The caffeine in matcha does not cause an acidic effect by altering the adrenal glands in the body causing the uncontrollable release of the insulin and glucose in the body but rather regulates both the glucose and insulin levels in the body.This makes it more ideal for weight loss and for persons who have diabetes.
Various studies indicate that the EGCG in Matcha significantly reduces the blood cholesterol levels by increasing the rate of cholesterol oxidation in the human body and inhibits the bad cholesterol (LDL).
In a study carried out by the National Institutes of Health, matcha green tea it was demonstrated that it increases the rate of fat oxidation by an average of 20%. Thus, demonstrating that it is highly effective in fat burning and utilizing it as a significant source of energy for our bodies by prevention fat accumulation and absorptions. The active compound, EPCG, found in the tea inhibits an enzyme which breaks down the hormone norepinephrine found in the nervous system which in turn signals the fat cells to break down.
The EGCG plays a significant role in the activations of the hepatic lipid metabolism while also acting as an effective inhibitor which stops the absorption of the intestinal fat compounds thus reducing the accumulation of the body fat.
Matcha contains only five calories per 2 servings of tea as compared to other drinks and juice which has over 100 calories per serving such as the orange juice which has 111 calories. Its low caloric content makes it ideal for a weight loss energy drink.
Matcha green tea is a natural mood enhancer due to its high content of L-Theanine which significantly reduces stress- a common factor in weight gain and obesity. L-theanine works by promoting the normal brain functioning by promoting a state of relaxation and emotional well-being by increasing the dopamine and serotonin levels in the human body which in turn produces the alpha waves.
Matcha green tea is loaded with antioxidants which helps to fights the free radicals and oxidants thus keeping you healthy and focused during the weight loss period. A recent study done by the National Academy of Sciences argues that drinking Matcha on a daily basis enhances the overall body health and immunity. The super high levels of antioxidants in the forms of catechins, polyphenols and flavonoids aids in the defense system of the body against the free radicals and oxidation from our environment.
How Much Matcha Can You Consume?
Consuming one teaspoon to four teaspoons of matcha powder daily is sufficient for an effective weight loss diet plan. This will energize you and will supply your body with all the necessary nutrients needed to fuel the rate of metabolism.
Good things come with patience. While Matcha can help you in weight loss, it is no magic but it can be an equally fantastic and excellent addition to your weight loss goals and diet plans. To get maximum weight loss results, its best to consume matcha on a daily basis. Long-term and consecutive EGCG and catechin consumption enhances oxidations of fat and reduces the accumulation of body fats significantly. Always keep in mind that a healthier diet and exercise will determine the achievement of your weight loss goals.
All around the world, everyone is talking about Matcha. People are seemingly obsessed by this miracle elixir. Celebrities, models and their tribes are all toting jars of the matcha green tea into their daily lifestyles. Japan’s valued green tea has been named one of the most powerful superfoods. Traditionally and widely used in most Japanese ceremonies, matcha is not your typical green tea. It is the highest quality high grade and concentrated powdered green tea available all over the world and made from young nutrient leaves of Camellia sinensis plant.
Unlike other types of green teas, Matcha tea leaves are often cultivated in shaded areas, thus increasing their chlorophyll content preserving the natural nutrients.Matcha is 100 percent whole leaf, meticulously grown, gently dried and stone grounded into an emerald bright green unfermented powder. Since the entire leaf is grounded into a powder, dissolving it into water will provide immense minerals, vitamins, amino acids and antioxidants that are inherent in the plant itself, delivering a richly organic, deeply satisfying flavor profile that is not found in other steeped green teas. In fact, one cup of hot matcha tea has many antioxidants in ten cups of other regular tea. It is rich in antioxidants, nutrients, chlorophyll and fiber.
Nutritional Data of Matcha Green Tea
NUTRIENT PER 1G MATCHA
Total AminoAcids 34mg
Total Catechins 105mg
Vitamin A 291 Units
Vitamin C 1.75mg
Health Benefits of Matcha Green Tea
Matcha is widely known for its numerous healing properties as outlined below:
Antioxidants are naturally occurring compounds found in food which help the human body fight against diseases, prevents aging and cell and tissue damages ensuring that the body functions at its peak potential by scavenging any free radical responsible for oxidative damages to our bodies. Matcha green tea is extremely high in antioxidant contents elevating it to the super tea status. A study was done by Tufts University and the USDA Agricultural Research Institute measured the ORAC value (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity) of Matcha to be at 1384 units per gram as compared to other superfoods such as blueberries, cranberries that are well graded as antioxidant powerhouses. As a result of its antioxidant properties, Matcha helps in fighting off various diseases and illnesses at various stages.
Matcha and Weight Loss
A study done by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that Matcha has been associated with weight loss. When combined with exercises matcha increases metabolism by increasing the rate of thermogenesis thus promoting fat oxidation. It has been proven that The antioxidant epigallocatechin gallate,(ECGC), boosts the rate of the metabolism. Matcha gently boosts the rate of metabolism without necessarily causing any negative side effects such as increased heart rate and blood pressure. The catechins inhibit the movement of glucose into the fat cells, slowing down the rise of blood sugar levels, subsequently preventing fat storages and high insulin levels in the body. Eventually, the matcha green tea regulates appetite and hunger pangs in a person. In fact when your levels of blood sugar are quite stable, you are less likely to cave into cravings. Through glucose control and insulin sensitivities, Matcha green tea decreases the fasting concentrations of glucose subsequently lowering the risks of type 2 diabetes.
Matcha helps in boosting energy levels
Another mesmerizing property of Matcha green tea is its ability to boost the energy levels throughout the day.Clinical studies show that Matcha helps to speed up the rate of recovery in athletes and performers who mainly focus on intense workouts. A much more recent study found out that the Matcha powder improved the physical endurance while exercising by over 25%.
This has been attributed to the effects of the EGCG present in the Matcha which helps to reverse the cellular damages caused by oxidative-nitrosative stress(internal imbalances of the antioxidants and free radicals ,which ultimately prevents cell repair and destroys cells bringing about illnesses).EGCG completely alters any stress and biochemical markers that cause apoptosis and cell deaths. This was demonstrated in a study to evaluate the effects of EGCG on chronic fatigue syndrome during exercises.
Matcha calms the mind and reduces stress.
Matcha Green Tea is rich in the L-theanine and caffeine which are said to induce alert calm feelings without any nervous energy. L-theanine is a non-dietary amino acid responsible for enhancing moods by relaxing the human mind, hence sharpening concentration in a person. L-theanine promotes the alpha waves in the brain leading to a relaxed alertness by increasing the production of mood-enhancing chemicals, the serotonin and dopamine. A study done on the importance of L-theanine in patients with anxiety and depression issues shows that L-theanine significantly increases the GABA (an inhibitory neurotransmitter) and dopamine levels in the human brain. Matcha has five times more L-theanine as compared to other green teas. This has been attributed to its cultivating technique when growing the tea.
Matcha Reduce Risks of Cancer
Matcha possesses a unique and potent class of antioxidants and polyphenols, particularly the catechins, which are not found in other types of foods. The catechin, EGCG provides powerful cancer-fighting properties to the human body. Catechins, most importantly the EGCG counteracts the harmful effects of the free radicals from the effects of Uv rays, radiation, pollution and chemical exposures which causes cell deaths and DNA damages trough oxidative stress. Various studies show a direct link between the consumptions of matcha green tea and the reduction of the respective cancers. Besides that the tea polyphenols inhibit the development of tumor cells while significantly inducing apoptosis. The catechins work by activating the detoxification of enzymes such quinone reductase and glutathione S-transferase which prevent the growth of tumors and ultimately improving the immune system functioning.
Matcha helps in Detoxification
The high contents of chlorophyll in Matcha green tea make it an excellent detoxifier capable of eliminating unwanted toxins, heavy metals and toxins from the human body. This is because chlorophyll increases the capacity of the blood cells to delivers nutrients and oxygen within the body thus helping in the regeneration of the body and cleansing at the cellular level.
Reduces risks of Heart Diseases and Hypertension
Based on the studies by Harvard University, Matcha lowers the high triglycerides and LDL cholesterol, hence significantly reducing the risks of heart diseases and strokes. The antioxidants in Matcha blocks the oxidation of the bad cholesterol, by increasing the good HDL cholesterol, eventually improving the arterial functions. This was demonstrated by the study done on a person who consumed matcha tea on a regular basis in comparison to the non-consumers of the tea.
Recommended Daily Intake
Take ½–1 teaspoon daily.
It is easier to buy products that are not real Matcha, so it is important to buy the matcha products from a reputable store.
There are no known side effects of Matcha Green Tea, however for expectant and lactating mothers you should consult your physician.
Let’s all join this craze of the super tea Matcha and enjoy its immense health benefits to our bodies.
Matcha is a finely grounded, bright emerald green tea powder. The Ceremonial Matcha is a natural, organic green tea that has been an integral part of the famous Japanese tea ceremony. Originally from China, it was used as a drug for treatment of various ailments.
Matcha green tea was originally grown in China and was introduced to the Japanese in the year 1191 by a monk, Eisai. The Zen monk planted the tea seeds, and it greatly flourished, and so did the use of the Matcha as a meditation aid as well as the adoption of the tea ceremony rituals. Over time has been the central part of the Japanese cultural rituals.
So How Different is the Matcha Green Tea from Other Green Teas?
The Japanese matcha comes from similar species, Camellia Sinensis, as all other teas, but about four weeks before it’s harvested, the tea field is shaded with bamboo. This shading technique results in a 90 percent sunlight reduction. The plant now growing in semi-dark conditions produces a lot of chlorophyll in compensation of low sunlight making the tea leaves rich in amino acids, L-Theanine. Unlike other green teas, matcha is briefly steamed to protect them from oxidation, thus leading to preservation of nutritional content and flavor and is usually drunk in powder form.
Nutritional Value of the Organic Matcha Powder
A serving of Organic Matcha Powder is nutritionally comparable to ten cups of ordinary green teas. According to Komes, Dranenka, et al., Matcha is rich in super antioxidants activities such as the catechins, polyphenols, and chlorophyll. Besides that, it’s a source of Vitamins B complex, A, C, K, and E as well as trace elements. The presence of the amino acids such as the theophylline and L-theanine makes Matcha a nutritional powerhouse with incredible benefits.
Benefits of Organic Matcha Powder
Antioxidant Activity: Matcha is rich in antioxidants. As the human body’s cleanup crews, antioxidants protect against the harmful free radicals responsible for tissue damages, aging as well as agents of inflammatory diseases. Antioxidants significantly increase metabolisms, lowers blood cholesterol and controls the blood sugar levels. Based on ORAC (Oxygen Radical Absorbance Capacity), Organic Matcha Powder ORAC value is 1384 as per the gram basis. To put into perspective, Organic Matcha Powder has more antioxidant activities than all the polar antioxidant rich foods when even combined. The epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), catechin and polyphenols in organic matcha powder, helps to reduce inflammations while maintaining the health of the arteries as well bringing about regenerations of body cells.
Type 2 diabetes: Organic Matcha tea is valuable in the maintenance of healthy metabolisms in diabetic persons. The antioxidants present in the matcha powder reduces the levels of cholesterol, triglycerides and the contents of the hepatic glucose. Research done by Wolfram, Swen in 2007 on diabetic subjects administered with organic matcha showed that Matcha exerts inhibitory actions against the hepatic and renal damages by restraining the accumulations of glycation end by products in the human kidney.
Cardiovascular health: A study carried out by Kim, Hae-Suk, et al. in 2013 demonstrated that the epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) found in the organic matcha powder significantly reduced the total LDL cholesterol and the total serum cholesterol in the blood. The said catechin reduces the accumulation of lipids, thus promoting autophagy of the vascular endothelial cells.
Improves Memory and Prevents Dementia: Based on De Mejias, et.al study on Brain, behavior, and immunity carried out in 2009; there is no doubt that Organic Matcha Powder tea, improves the functions of the brain. Catechin found in Matcha is effective in protecting the neurons against degenerations, thus lowering the potential risks of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s neurodegenerative diseases. Parkinson’s is often associated with the death of the Dopamines which are responsible for the productions of neurons in the human brain. Alzheimer’s on the hand causes deterioration of the human brain resulting in dementia.
Sustained & Focused Energy: Organic Matcha Powder contains essential amino acids, particularly L-theanine. According to Kimura, Kenta, et al., L-Theanine promotes relaxation naturally while heightening the concentration thus significantly reducing anxiety and enhancing moods. Besides that, it stimulates the productions of alpha wave activities in the human brain, resulting in a state of calmness and alertness. It’s no wonder; the matcha was always used by the Buddhist Monk before meditations and the Samurai warriors before a battle or wars as a health elixir.
Metabolism & Weight Loss: The epigallocatechin gallate EGCG catechin in matcha is mainly known for boosting the rate of metabolism by regulating weight through oxidation of the fat and thermogenesis. In fact, the concentration of the EGCG is far much greater in Matcha than other average green tea. According to Cooper, Raymond, D et.al article, the catechin promotes the productions and excretions of cortisol, the human body’s fat storage, and stress hormone. Research done by Anderton R. Christopher and David J. Weiss in 2003 shows that ECGC increases caloric burns and significantly alters the levels of the hunger hormones, eventually reducing appetite.
Natural Detoxification: Organic Matcha Powder’s green color is due to the abundance of chlorophyll, which is widely known as a natural detoxifier. A study carried out by Le Galls, Gwénaëlle, Marianne Defernez and Ian J. Colquhoun in 2004 suggests that the chlorophyll found in the matcha increases the capacity of the blood in delivering oxygen and other significant nutrients to the body cells. Thus, it cleanses and regenerates the body at both the cellular and molecular levels. Additionally, it contains dietary fiber, an important detoxifying agent which controls and regulates the blood sugar level, eases digestions as well as controls appetite.
Choosing a Good Organic Matcha Green Tea Powder
Here are a few significant things to consider.
Always buy from a certified organic product. You should buy products that are free from the harmful effects of pesticides, herbicides and other toxic chemicals used in the products of the non-organic products. A good Organic Match Powder product should be organically certified and should be from Japan since their organic certification is stricter than other countries. Japanese organic matcha powder is the best, not just due to its superior taste but rather due to the traditional methods that are used in the Japanese production of the Matcha.
The better the quality of the matcha the greener and finer the powder should be. A high-quality powder will significantly give a much creamy taste and smoother than the low-quality products. Besides the poor nutritional value in the Poor quality of organic matcha powder, it will result to a green tea that is bitter, coarse and potentially gritty when drank. In essence, choose a high-quality product from certified suppliers and producers of the matcha products.
Is There Any Negative Implication with the Consumptions of Organic Matcha Powder?
Organic Matcha Powder may contain some caffeine that may trigger allergic reactions in some people. They may include cardiac arrhythmia and diarrhea. Thus, if you are trying for the first time, it is advisable that you ensure natural vigilance before consumption.
Andertons, C. R., & Weis, D. J. (2003). Determinations of the Catechin in the Matcha by the Micellars Electrokinetics Chromatography. Journals of the Chromatography A, 1011(1), 174-181.
Coopers, R., Morrés, D. J., & Morrés, D. (2005). The Medicinals benefit of the green tea: Reviews of the non-cancer health’s benefit. Journals of the Alternatives & Complement Aries Medicines.
De Mejias, E. G., Puangpraphants, S., & Ramirez-Mare, M. V. (2009). Bioactives Component of Green Teas: Inflammation, Cancers, and Behavior. The Brain, behaviors, and immunity.
Le Galls, G., Defernez, M, &. Colquhouns, I. J. (2004). The Metabolites Profilings Using the 1H NMRs Spectroscopys for the Quality Assessments of Camellia sinensis (L.). Journals of the Agricultural and Foods Chemistry.
Wolframs, S. (2007). The Effects of EGCG and Green Tea on Metabolic health and Cardiovascular. Journals of the American College of Nutrition’s, 25(5), 393-399.
Kims, H. S., Jang, J. H., Montana, V., Kim, A.J. A. & Parpura, V., (2013). EGCG Stimulation on Autophagy of the Vascular Endothelial Cell: Probable Roles for Reducing the Accumulations of Lipid.Journal of Biological’s Chemistry, 288(31), 22693-22705.
Kimura, K., Juneja, L. R., Ohira, H & Ozeki, M.,. (2007). L-Theanine Decreases the Physiological and the Psychological Stresses Response. Biological Psychologies, 75(1), 38-46.
Komes, D., Belščak, A., Ganić, Vulić, I. & Horić, D., K. K., (2010). Green Tea Preparations and its Influences on the Contents of Bioactive Compound. The Food Researches International, 43(1), 167-176.
Yamabe, N., Hur, Yokozawa, T. J. M., & Kang, K. S. (2010). Matcha, Powdered Organic Teas, Ameliorate the Progressions of Hepatic and Renal Damages in Type 2 Diabetic OLETF Subjects. Journals of the medicinals foods, 13(3), 716-726.
Writer: Dr. Ellian (Nutritionist)