The benefits of drinking tea

Tuesday July 7 2020

 

By Dr Kasenene

I have heard that matcha tea is better than regular green tea. Is this true? And if so why? – Yvonne

Both matcha and green tea come from the Camellia Sinensis plant which is also actually the same plant from which we get our regular black tea. The difference is in how they are processed. Tea contains a unique set of compounds called catechins that have been shown to improve health.
Catechins are flavonoids that primarily act as antioxidants that help to prevent damage to our cells, reduce inflammation and formation of harmful free radicals linked to a number of diseases such as cancer, heart disease, arthritis, obesity, diabetes and hypertension.

However, some forms of tea are healthier than others. Green tea towers above the rest because it has a high concentration of one specific catechin called EGCG (Epigallocatechin gallate) that is more powerful than others.
Matcha, which is a concentrated powder form of green tea is made from camellia sinensis plants that have undergone a unique process to ensure that the chlorophyll and catechin levels are increased about two weeks before harvesting. The leaves are then dried and ground to form the green matcha powder.

This process of producing matcha leads to a product that has up to 100 times the amount of EGCG than regular green tea, making it much more potent and significantly better for our health than regular green tea in this regard.
Matcha tea is also high in the amino acid L-Theanine, which is important for keeping the body calm and relaxed. L-Theanine also helps in the production of dopamine and serotonin, two chemicals that serve to enhance mood, improve memory, and promote better concentration and also helps to enhance energy and endurance.

Lastly, matcha has been shown to increase metabolism and help the body burn fat about four times faster than average green tea. Studies have shown that ingestion of catechins from matcha tea leads to a reduction in body fat over time.

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