Move over coconut water, matcha is the next soft drink destined for stardom.
Buddhist monks used to drink it centuries ago and Japanese Samurai warriors used it in 13th-century ceremonies, but does this ancient mood boosting tea have a place in modern mugs?
Matcha is a powerful concentrate of green tea, containing 10 times the amount of antioxidants of one cup of standard green tea. In addition to being full to the brim of good stuff, it also contains mood and cognitive boosting amino acid L-theanine and caffeine – which is released slowly into the bloodstream for a sustained mood boost.
In Japan, it’s ability to help individuals focus combined with the slow-release energy properties mean it is often marketed as a stress relief product – making it a great pick-me-up for anyone who needs to focus or for those who want to lead a healthy lifestyle but find it difficult to do so when stuck behind a desk.
So if matcha is so fabulous, why aren’t we all drinking it by the gallon?
While matcha is common in Japan, it currently costs around £25 for a measly 30g in the UK – which explains why, until recently, it was only present in the pantries of health-food junkies and gym aficionados. Now however, matcha is becoming both more readily available and more affordable, meaning that soon we will all be able to reap the benefits.
Matcha can be quite bitter in taste, so if you aren’t a fan of herbal tea you can get your fill in other ways:
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- Lemonade – Blend with fresh lemonade for a refreshing tea or coffee substitute.
- Chocolate – Lots of companies are now blending matcha with white chocolate. For a sweet twist, see if you can get your hands on a bar.
- Biscuits – Blend powder or tea into biscuit and cake recipes.
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