What exactly are the benefits of matcha tea compared to other green teas and beverages in general? There is plenty of research and documentation about matcha tea and how it compares to similar drinks. Unfortunately, the data is rather dispersed, and there is no single, reliable source from which to learn all the pertinent facts. The following infographic is an attempt to solve that dilemma; it presents the main topical categories pertaining to matcha tea and provides relevant, succinct facts about each one.
The key concepts to grasp about matcha include; its origins, its general health benefits, how it compares to green tea, its antioxidant profile, specific teaware used with matcha, how to prepare it, and how it can be added to various other foods and beverages. The infographic below combines all those topics into a compact, readable format that makes it simple for anyone to acquire an understanding of matcha’s benefits at a glance.
Matcha’s origins are not only interesting but also educational; Buddhist monks brought the tea from their home country to Japan about 900 years ago. In those days, the tea was used as a way to stay awake during long bouts of meditation. Most historians guess that the monks knew that it had associated health benefits as well. The art of Japanese tea ceremony has kept the flame burning, so to speak, all these years.
Matcha tea is one of the only all-natural beverages that can truly be called a super-food, though that term is quite overused in the media. Even so, matcha contains massive quantities of antioxidants, helps boost the immune system, can detox the body, enhances calmness, can lower blood sugar and cholesterol, burns calories, and is rich in vitamins. It also contains healthy doses of fiber and chlorophyll.
Compared to green tea
In every relevant category of nutrition, matcha tea outstrips regular green tea by a large margin.
Compared to regular green tea, matcha has about ten times the antioxidants. For vitamin C levels, fiber, calcium, iron, potassium and protein, match is the clear winner. Matcha is also a much wiser choice for those who seek energy drinks because it delivers a sustained dose of energy over a 36-hour period, rather than all at once. Plus, there’s no “coffee crash” with matcha.
Teaware and preparation
With just a minimal set of basic matcha teaware, anyone can easily prepare it. Common items in a set include a whisk, a tea bowl, spoon, tea cloth, and a caddy. Unlike steeped teas, matcha needs only hot water and a decent amount of mixing to prepare a cup. There are thin and thick varieties but each is prepared the same way. What the Japanese call usucha is a thin, slightly bitter matcha, while the thicker koicha is mild and sweet.
As an ingredient in other foods and drinks
Matcha tea can be used as an ingredient in breads, candy, beer, liquor drinks, lattes, milkshakes, cookies and a host of other foods and drinks. There’s really no limit to what matcha’s performance as an ingredient.