When it comes to tea, are you a matcha, matcha man (or woman)?  Sorry, couldn't resist that one. If you like green tea, you will love matcha tea. It is an alternate form of green tea that few people know about, but they should because its health benefits are even greater than the regular form of green tea. 

According to Time Magazine, Matcha is a type of green tea made by taking young tea leaves and grinding them into a bright green powder. The powder is then whisked with hot water. This is different from regular green tea, where the leaves are infused in water, then removed. Drinking brewed green tea “is a bit like boiling spinach, throwing away the spinach and just drinking the water,” says Louise Cheadle, co-author of The Book of Matcha and co-owner of the tea company Teapigs. “You will get some of the nutrients, but you’re throwing away the best bit.” With matcha, you’re drinking the whole tea leaves. “The finest matcha comes from Japan, where it has been grown for centuries and forms part of the traditional Japanese tea ceremony,” she adds.

Matcha comes from the same plant as green tea, but how it’s harvested and turned into tea creates is what makes it different. For instance, since Matcha comes in powder form there’s no tea bag to throw away, which means that no nutrition gets tossed away with the teabag. Here are three things that you should know about matcha before you drink it.

  • Credit: DGLimages/ Getty Stock /ThinkStock
    Credit: DGLimages/ Getty Stock /ThinkStock

    Health Benefits

    Matcha is rich in antioxidants that help your body fight free radicals. Free radicals are atoms that cause damage to your body if left unchecked. Matcha is also a good source for L-theanine, which is an amino acid that can help lower anxiety and stress if taken in the correct amount.

  • Credit: gresei/Getty Stock/ThinkStock
    Credit: gresei/Getty Stock/ThinkStock

    Potential Health Risks

    Matcha and the tea made from it contain caffeine, so if you’re looking for an energy boost, matcha has you covered. However, if you’re thinking about enjoying some matcha, but you’re sensitive to caffeine, please talk to your doctor before you drink it to protect your health.

  • Credit: Jupiterimages/Getty Stock/ThinkStock
    Credit: Jupiterimages/Getty Stock/ThinkStock

    Quality Matcha

    Not all matcha on the market today is equal. To ensure that you get the best, here are some things to look for to get the best matcha: a sweet grass-like smell, no added ingredients (like sugar), and a grassy taste that should be only a little bit bitter. And remember, matcha comes in powder form, so it should not be in a teabag.

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