Does matcha give you energy? The people that drink it certainly think so! In this article, we are going to be talking about the health benefits of matcha and why it can be a good source of energy. There are many components within matcha that make it good for boosting your energy levels throughout the day. Let’s take a look at what they are! 🍵🍃
So does Matcha give you energy? Yes!
Matcha green tea powder does give you energy, and we’re going to figure out why that is.
First, we are going to talk a little bit about what matcha is, how its made and what it tastes like.
Then we are going to dive right into the discussion and talk about the health benefits of matcha and why it is a good source of energy.
What is Matcha?
Matcha is essentially a powder green tea, but it has to be made from special leaves. So if matcha is a powder green tea, what's the difference between matcha and green tea? Read the answer in our article 👉 10 Difference between Matcha and Green Tea.
High quality ceremonial matcha has this natural smooth and sweet flavor, and this is perfected through the long and careful production process. Let’s take a brief look at the production process of matcha and see all the different steps that go into it. Some of these steps will be important when it comes to answering the question does matcha tea give you energy.
You can find a detail a detail video that cover everything you need to know about Matcha right here 👇
Before we get started with this section, there is one article we would love to recommend to you 👉 How is Matcha Made?. In this guide about how is matcha green tea produced we will take you through all the steps needed to produce true high quality matcha tea. But bellow you can find a quick sum up of the article.
Even before the tea is produced, it has to be grown. The tea plants used to make matcha are covered in a type of netting for 3 weeks before the harvest in order to block out the sunlight. When the tea plant is exposed to sunlight, it begins to convert the sweet and savory theanine into more bitter catechins, Catechins can act as protection against the UV light, but they can also produce a bitter flavor in the tea so they must be removed.
After the shading process, the top 3 leaves of the tea plant are selected and gathered up to be processed. These leaves are not only the highest in nutrients, but also the smoothest and sweetest in flavor. The leaves are then steamed, rolled and dried just like any other type of Japanese green tea.
What makes matcha unique is that the stems are actually removed during the production process. If these stems were to be ground up, it would negatively impact the flavor, so they have to be taken out. This also raises the caffeine content of the tea, and helps to answer the question does matcha tea give you energy.
Finally, the leaves with the stems removed (tencha) are ground into a fine powder in a large stone mill. It takes this mill 1 hour just to grind 50 grams of precious matcha powder. The tea powder is now ready to be packaged and sold.
Why does Matcha tea give you energy?
So let’s get into the question of why does matcha tea give you energy. Here we can look at a few different aspects of the tea that make it unique, and why it can give you more energy compared to other types of Japanese green tea.
Contains a high level of caffeine
Due to the shading process, the selection of leaves and the removal of stems, matcha tea has an incredibly high caffeine content. The caffeine content of matcha can even be higher than that of coffee, as long as you use 4 grams of powder for a large cup of tea. Caffeine can block the adenosine receptors and make you feel less tired throughout the day. The answer to the question 'why does matcha give you energy' is a bit more complicated then 'because caffeine' so let’s take a look at what else is going on.
The entire tea leaf nutrients are absorbed
All the health benefits in matcha are magnified because you are consuming the entire leaf. With a regular green tea, you are just drinking the water soluble components of the leaf and not the leaf itself. With matcha, you are grind up the entire leaf and drinking it. You are essentially eating the tea leaf itself and all the nutrients inside of it. This leads to a significantly higher consumption of the vitamins, minerals and nutrients of the green tea.
Speeds up your body’s metabolism
Green tea has been shown to increase the body's metabolism even during moderate exercise. During a study, one group was given a cup of green tea before a walk and the other group was not. The green tea group was shown to burn more calories and loose more weight overtime, even with just one cup.
Matcha also contains antioxidants which can help you fight against free radical damage. By protecting your body from damage and keeping yourself 'younger' you can improve your energy levels overtime.
Contains powerful amino acids
The amino acid l-theanine can be your best friend when it comes to maintaining your energy levels. Rather than burning up all the caffeine at once, l-theanine helps you slow the absorption of caffeine, so you get a more relaxed calm alert energy throughout the day. This is why tea drinkers report having less jitters and less of a crash compared to when they drink coffee.
What does matcha look and taste like?
High quality matcha should be a deep jade green color but it can be anywhere from yellowish to dark green.
The flavor of the matcha tea should be heavy on these steamed vegetable notes, but it should have a natural sweetness and a smooth, milky finish.
Some people even describe matcha as having this 'seaweedy' flavor which is possible given the high amounts of theanine and polyphenols.
What are the health benefits of drinking matcha powder?
There are two questions when it comes to matcha: does matcha give you energy and does matcha give you health benefits. We’ve done our best to answer the first question, now let’s dive into the second one.
When you feel tired it is likely because there is a build up of adenosine that signals to your brain that it is time to sleep. When you consume caffeine, it blocks the adenosine receptors so you don’t feel as tired or fatigued. This is no substitute for a good night sleep, but if you are looking for a boost in energy for a particular job, matcha can be a good solution.
The polyphenols and catechins in the matcha can also have health benefits, particularly during cold and flu season. This can help to strengthen your immune system so you don’t succumb to the usual seasonal illnesses.
The l-theanine in matcha can also stimulate alpha brainwave activity, which are the same brainwaves stimulated during meditation. This is when your brain is the most relaxed and creativity, which is great when it comes to relieving stress.
Improve concentration and cognitive abilities
Of course matcha can also help to improve your focus and cognitive abilities. In Japan, matcha originally was used by the monks, to help improve their concentration during long periods of meditation. It’s no wonder that now people are still using it for increased focus during long periods of work and study.
Can help you lose weight
As mentioned before, matcha and other green teas may also help you lose weight. Green tea can increase metabolism and fat burning during moderate excercise. This makes it a good part of a serious weight loss regimen.
How to use Matcha as energy booster
Morning Classic Matcha
This is the best way to enjoy matcha. Just get some matcha powder, pour in some water and froth it up with your bamboo whisk or chasen. If you are using high quality matcha, it should be smooth enough to drink plain. You may want to try a few different types of matcha before you find the one you like the most.
Add Matcha to a smoothie
Another way to enjoy matcha is to add it to a smoothie. When you are adding matcha alongside a bunch of other ingredients, the quality doesn’t need to be top notch, so you can save a little bit of money here. You can go for the basic latte grade matcha and just add a scoop or two to your favorite fruit shake.
Refreshing Matcha Latte
Of course a good way to enjoy matcha tea is also with a matcha green tea latte. This is made by mixing matcha with a sweetener and a plant based milk like oatmilk or soymilk. If you are interested in trying out some matcha latte recipes, you can find some elsewhere on the blog.
How does matcha energy compare to the energy in coffee and other energy drinks?
Because matcha is simply just ground up leaves, it is a much healthier alternative to sugary energy drinks. Not only are these drinks high in caffeine, but they can contain a lot of other chemicals that are not fully understood. Get back to the basics and let matcha be your energy drink!
Is Matcha better than coffee?
Matcha can contain as much caffeine as coffee but you won’t notice the effects as much because of the l-theanine. Matcha will give you less jitters and less of a crash later on in the day. Try switching out your morning cup of coffee for a cup of matcha and see how you feel!
What is the best time of day to drink matcha?
Because matcha is a high caffeine tea, it’s best to drink it in the morning time. Even if you drink it later on in the afternoon, it still might keep you up at night. Matcha is very good, but it’s not worth losing a night of sleep over it. Just stick to the safe side and drink matcha in the morning and lower caffeine teas in the afternoon.
Where can you buy Matcha?
If you are interested in checking out matcha tea, you can browse our selection. After traveling around Japan for the past few years, we’ve met with dozens of farmers and sampled about 100 different kinds of matcha tea.
Do you want to know what is the best matcha powder? Checkout our article 👉Top 21 Matcha Powders of 2022. We'll present your our selection of the best energising matcha green tea!
5 Reasons to go for Higher Quality Matcha
When it comes to the question, does matcha give you energy, it is important to talk a little bit about the quality of the matcha. Not only will higher quality matcha taste and look better, it will also give you a better quality energy. In this next segment, we are going to go through a few of the advantages of drinking high quality matcha.
The Flavor is much Smoother
The first advantage to high quality matcha is that the flavor is much smoother. This may sound obvious, but there is actually a very specific reason why the flavor of premium matcha is so good. First the tea leaves have to be shaded for three weeks prior to the harvest. This prevents the plant from converting the sweet and savory theanine into more bitter catechins. The catechins are used as protection against the UV light, so leaves that are exposed to sunlight for longer will begin to become more bitter. Next the top sprouts of the plant are selected, as these are the sweetest in flavor and the highest in nutrients. Cheaper matchas will be made from later harvests or older tea leaves, both of which will reduce the nutrient content and make the tea taste more bitter. Finally the leaves need to have their stems removed before they are ground into a fine powder. If this step is skipped and the stems are ground up along with the leaves, it can also affect the taste and make it less enjoyable.
Color is more vibrant
The second advantage is that the color of the high quality matcha is much more vibrant. With culinary matcha, you get this really unnapealling brown color, but with ceremonial grade matcha, you get a beautiful jade green color. This transformation of color is mostly due to the shading.
When you compare shaded tea leaves and non-shaded tea leaves, you can see the shaded ones take on a much greener color. When these tea leaves are cut off from sunlight, they have to produce more chlorophyll to compensate. This is one of the reasons these leaves change color. For matcha, it’s really important this transformation takes place. If regular tea leaves are ground up into a powder, they will taste very different than the real thing.
You can differentiate a good from a bad matcha based on colour. Do you want to master this technic? Then read our article 👉 How to Differentiate Good From Bad Matcha with the Matcha Colors.
The third advantage to choosing high quality matcha is that it actually produces a much better foam. You can get a pretty good indication of how good a matcha is, based on how well it foams up when you whisk it. This foam isn’t just for looks, it also gives the tea a much smoother and creamier taste. A well-foamed bowl of matcha can taste almost like a latte, but without any milk or sugar. So not only does lower quality matcha taste much more bitter, but the texture will be off and you won’t be able to disguise the flavor underneath a blanket of foam
In addition to the flavor and drinking experience being much more pleasant, high quality matcha will also have a lot more caffeine. A teaspoon of lower quality matcha will have 34 milligrams of caffeine, but premium matcha will have 68mg of caffeine. Matcha is part of a lot of peoples morning ritual, and one of the reasons for that is that it is a high caffeine tea. If you’re not feeling a long lasting energy from the matcha, it may be because you are using a lower grade matcha, which contains less caffeine. The reason that premium matcha has more caffeine has to do with the long production process we discussed earlier. The tea plant produces caffeine as a defense mechanism to protect itself from insects, and because the plant undergoes a lot of stress when its cut off from sunlight, it produces even more caffeine. What’s even more interesting is that the younger, more tender leaves used for matcha are more vulnerable to insects, so they actually produce more. These two reasons give matcha and gyokuro the highest caffeine content in the world of tea. If older leaves are used, or if the shading process is shorter, the matcha will not contain as much caffeine.
Before you get concerned about the caffeine, you should also know that matcha has one thing that coffee does not have and that is l-theanine. The fifth and final reason to drink high quality matcha is because of the higher theanine content. L-theanine is an amino acid found almost exclusively in tea that buffers some of the negative side effects of caffeine. It slows the bodies absorption of caffeine, so instead of getting a rapid jolt of energy and then a crash soon after, you get a long lasting sustainable energy throughout the day. This is why a lot of people like to drink tea for long periods of work and study. Matcha was originally consumed in Japan by the monks, that found it helpful during long periods of meditation. We now know that this is because l-theanine stimulates alpha brainwave activity, which is the same brainwaves stimulated when someone is in a meditative state. L-theanine is one of the many properties that makes tea so special, and matcha has it in great supply. If you really want to experience this so called 'calm-alert' feeling, a great place to start is making a cup of premium matcha tea.
If you want to start exploring the world of high quality matcha, a good place to start is with the monthly matcha club. With this subscription, not only will you get great deals on matchas from small farms all around Japan, you’ll also get a free tea whisk and a tea spoon your first month. This will give you all you need to start whisking up a perfect bowl of matcha tea. Thank you all so much for reading this article. If you have any questions about matcha, please feel free to leave them in the comments below.
How to make matcha taste good?
There are 11 rules that you have to respect if you want your matcha to taste good. Because there are so many different strategies you can use to make a better tasting bowl of matcha, we decided we would put them all together in one article. Read the article 👉 How to make matcha taste good with 11 simple tips to learn how to do it!
Why is matcha so expensive?
This is a question we get asked all the time and because so much goes into producing matcha tea, we find it difficult to answer in a sentence or two so we decided to write a whole article about it. The article is called 👉 Why is matcha so expensive? Explanation by Experts. But we can sum up this article with the 11 main reasons:
- Matcha only grows in specific geographic locations
- It has to come from the first harvest
- Extra man to shade the plants
- Shading process and why do you need to shade the plants?
- The plant has to survive 3 weeks without sunlight
- Hand plucking process
- Careful Leaf Selection
- Stems and veins of the tea leaves are removed
- Tea is ground with very expensive equipment
- The precious powder has to be perfectly packed
- The demand is higher than the supply
Final words on 'Does matcha give you energy'
So, does matcha tea give you energy? We certainly think so, but we’ll let you be the judge of that. Try a cup of matcha tea tomorrow morning and see how you feel.
Do you notice a jolt of energy right away? Do you feel the same jitters and crash you do with coffee? How long does the energy last.
These are all questions we would like to know the answer to, so please feel free to reach out and let us know what you think.
Funny fact, did you know that there are two ways to spell matcha? You can either say Matcha or Maccha. To learn about the topic, checkout our article 👉 Is it Maccha or Matcha?