Green really is the colour of health! In light of our very new DIRTEA Matcha Super Blend, we wanted to share some of the incredible benefits this magical mixture has to offer.
Matcha is one of nature's oldest solutions to a healthier and more energised self. Matcha is made up of finely ground green tea leaves grown and processed from the Camellia sinensis plant. The making of matcha is a longer process than green tea and requires patience; the preparation requires several weeks, and it takes about a month for the leaves to grow in the shade. This process helps boost the nutrient levels of matcha to extraordinary levels. As a result of the absence of light, the tea leaves produce increasing amounts of chlorophyll and amino acids.
Whilst matcha is shade-grown, generic green tea tends to be grown in the sun and is consumed by adding the leaves to hot water and drinking. When drinking matcha however, all the leaves are consumed; therefore, we gain the benefits entirely. And for context, one gram of matcha powder will contain about 20-50 mg of caffeine per gram. A regular cup of coffee typically contains 70-75mg of caffeine. It also has significantly more antioxidants than green tea or coffee.
The origins of matcha can be traced back to the Tan dynasty between the 7th to 10th centuries in China. However, it gained popularity during the Song Dynasty, which reigned from the 10th to the 13th. Eisai, a Japanese Buddhist priest who had spent most of his time studying Buddhism in China, returned to Japan in 1191. It is said that he introduced the Zen approach to Japan. He popularised green tea and the Zen Buddhist methods of preparing powdered green tea.
For centuries, Japan has used matcha in tea ceremonies to enhance focus while calming the body and mind. In recent years, it has taken a front seat at almost all cafes, health and wellness stores, and even many households due to the increased awareness of its well-being benefits. Here, we are sharing the fantastic nutrients and health-aiding effects that DIRTEA Matcha Super Blend provides.
WAKE UP WITH AN ENERGY BOOST AND NO JITTERS!
If you suffer from morning fatigue or have a crash in the afternoon, look no further! Matcha contains an amino-acid called L-theanine, which alters and levels the effects of the caffeine in matcha and levels the effect of the caffeine contained in matcha. This means you can feel the effects of matcha for a few more hours than if you drank regular coffee. L-theanine is often known to provide relaxed alertness for an average of 6-8 hours without causing drowsiness and even relieves stress disorders, improves mood and maintains normal sleep. (1)
MAY CONTRIBUTE TO HEART HEALTH
According to World Health Organization, cardiovascular diseases (CVDs) are the leading cause of death globally. An estimated 17.9 million people died from CVDs in 2019, representing 32% of all global deaths.(2)
The good news is that matcha may contribute to supporting a healthier heart alongside a healthy diet. Matcha contains micronutrients, one known as epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG). A study found EGCG to display a wide range of therapeutic properties including the potential to support a healthier cardiovascular system.(3)
A CALM FEELING WITH EVERY SIP
A 2019 study has shown that matcha effectively reduces unease by using an anxiety maze test on mice.(4) Matcha activates the dopamine DR receptors and specific serotonin receptors in mice's brains, which could suggest that drinking a cup of matcha daily may contribute to an alleviation of unease and improve overall mood.
THE POWER OF AMINO ACIDS
Glutamate is an amino acid that keeps your brain functioning properly and is the most abundant excitatory neurotransmitter in your brain and central nervous system, playing a major role in shaping learning and memory and sending messages between nerve cells in your brain. Matcha is high in Glutamate as well as L-theanine, which is great for calming the overactivity of Glutamate. This balance of amino acids allows GABA to increase which reduces neuronal excitability (aka. It slows the active part of the mind). This is why we feel focused and alert when we drink matcha. On the flip side, when we drink coffee, alertness is often accompanied by unpleasant side effects, including jitteriness and even panic and paranoia, and is often followed by a crash.
BRAIN BOOSTING PROPERTIES
L-theanine and caffeine pass the blood-brain barrier (BBB) to work at the core of how our brains respond to stimuli/the world around us. Both L-theanine and caffeine are also thought to help improve attention and memory. The two work together as L-theanine contributes to relaxation, reducing the stimulating effect of caffeine.
L-theanine significantly increases activity in the brain's alpha frequency band, indicating that it relaxes the mind without inducing drowsiness. Alpha activity in the brain is said to play an important role in critical aspects of attention. A human electroencephalograph (EEG) study shows that L-theanine directly affects the brain to modulate parts of brain function in humans.(5) EEG was measured in healthy, young participants at baseline and 45, 60, 75, 90 and 105 minutes after 50mg L-theanine or placebo ingestion. The results indicated that L-theanine, at realistic dietary levels, significantly affects the general state of mental alertness or arousal.
FURTHER BRAIN ENRICHMENT WITH LION’S MANE
Within the DIRTEA Matcha Super Blend lies 1000mg of Lion’s Mane per serving. By now, you guys should know how much we rave about Lion’s Mane, especially since promising research in rodent studies shows its potential to stimulate Nerve Growth Factor (NGF).(6) Simply put, NGF is the process where a protein that, when extracted from Lion’s Mane, may stimulate the growth of new brain cells in the hippocampus, a part of the brain that is associated with thinking, learning and emotions.
WEIGHT MANAGEMENT EFFECTS
You have probably seen green tea extract in many detox supplements or weight loss diets, and there is a reason for this. EGCG within green tea is known to help keep boost metabolism. Matcha’s high content of EGCG combined with a healthy balanced diet may contribute to keeping your weight levels in check.
A randomised, double-blind trial was conducted on 106 women who were assigned to either a high-dose green tea group or a placebo group. 12 weeks of treatment with high-dose green tea extract resulted in significant weight loss, reduced waist circumference and a consistent decrease in total cholesterol without any side effects or adverse effects in women with central obesity compared to the placebo group.(7)
PACKED FULL OF ANTIOXIDANTS
Aside from Chaga, matcha is one of the planet's best natural sources of antioxidants. You can typically find over 10x the number of antioxidants found in a cup of green tea.
With such high concentrations of antioxidants in matcha, it may help stabilise harmful free radicals which are often the culprits behind cellular damage.(8)
HEALTHY, GLOWING SKIN
As mentioned, matcha is high in antioxidants, which may help protect the skin from free radical damage caused by UV rays, pollution, smoking and other environmental factors. Free radicals can cause early signs of ageing, wrinkles, and fine lines, but antioxidants can counteract this and prevent damage to the skin.
DOUBLE THE GLOW WITH TREMELLA
Matcha Super Blend contains 1000mg per serving of our very own DIRTEA Tremella, which contains unique polysaccharide compounds that have shown water-retaining properties within the skin. Holding over 500 times its weight in water, the hydrating molecules of Tremella are smaller than those of hyaluronic acid, allowing them to penetrate the skin faster and more effectively.
MATCHA SUPER BLEND’S IMMUNITY-BOOSTING INGREDIENT
DIRTEA Matcha Super Blend contains 500mg per serving of Turkey Tail, which contains beta-d-glucans; and may benefit our immune system. Turkey Tail has been shown to be one of the highest sources of beta-d-glucans.
What does that mean for you? Beta-d-glucans create a branch of the molecule that may interact in the body in various ways and could modulate our immune system, meaning they could keep our immune system at its cruise level, never overstimulating nor suppressing it. Turkey Tail is also known as a biological response modifier (BRM), as it works to restore balance to the immune system and possibly improve the body’s natural response to any foreign agent.
DIRTEA matcha has a panoply of flavour profiles with mellow grassy notes, natural sweet nuttiness, and a touch of bitterness. Due to the taste profile and the plethora of benefits that matcha offers, we wanted to upgrade your matcha experience and curate a DIRTEA Mushroom Super Blend. This blend provides a healthy sweet taste with the added bonus of benefits we believe improves our well-being.
5 KEY TAKEAWAYS OF MATCHA
1. Provides relaxed alertness and energy without jitters for long periods of time
2. L-theanine and caffeine within matcha may help improve attention and memory
3. Packed full of antioxidants
4. May contribute to heart health
5. May protect the skin from free radical damage
- Baba, Y., Inagaki, S., Nakagawa, S., Kaneko, T., Kobayashi, M., and Takihara, T. (2021). ‘Effects of l-Theanine on Cognitive Function in Middle-Aged and Older Subjects: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Study’. J Med Food. 24(4):333-341. doi: 10.1089/jmf.2020.4803.
- World Health Organization. (2021). Cardiovascular Diseases (CVDs). Available at: https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/cardiovascular-diseases-(cvds)#:~:text=An%20estimated%2017.9%20million%20people,32%25%20of%20all%20global%20deaths. (Accessed: 10 May 2023)
- Eng, Q.Y., Thanikachalam, P.V., and Ramamurthy, S. (2008). ‘Molecular Understanding of Epigallocatechin Gallate (EGCG) in Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases’. J Ethnopharmacol. 2018 Jan 10; 210:296-310. doi: 10.1016/j.jep.2017.08.035.
- Science Daily. (2019). Drinking Matcha tea can reduce anxiety. Available at : https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2019/07/190709110228.htm#:~:text=Using%20the%20'elevated%20plus%20maze,receptors%20and%20certain%20serotonin%20receptors. (Accessed: 9 May 2023)
- Nobre, A.C., Rao, A., and Owen, G.N. (2008). ‘L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state’. Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 1 pp.167-8.
- Lai, P.L., Naidu, M., Sabaratnam, V., Wong, K.H., David, R.P., Kuppusamy, U.R., Abdullah, N., and Malek, S.N. (2013) ‘Neurotrophic Properties of the Lion's Mane Medicinal Mushroom, Hericium erinaceus (Higher Basidiomycetes) from Malaysia’. Int J Med Mushrooms. 15(6), pp.539-54. doi: 10.1615/intjmedmushr.v15.i6.30.
- Chen, I.J., Liu, C.Y., Chiu, J.P., and Hsu, C.H. (2016). ‘Therapeutic Effect of High-Dose Green Tea Extract on Weight Reduction: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial’. Clin Nutr. 35(3), pp.592-9. doi: 10.1016/j.clnu.2015.05.003.
- Jakubczyk, K., Kochman, J., Kwiatkowska, A., Kałduńska, J., Dec, K., Kawczuga, D., and Janda, K. (2020) ‘Antioxidant Properties and Nutritional Composition of Matcha Green Tea’. Foods. 9(4), pp.483. doi: 10.3390/foods9040483.