Secret Ingredient for Protein Green Tea Matcha Smoothie
Matcha is by far the most potent form of green tea available on the market today. Matcha green tea is approximately 10 to 15 times stronger than regular green tea due to the fact that it consists of the entire tea leaf, ground to a fine powder. The immense health-giving properties of Matcha are beyond any other tea and virtually any other natural beverage on the planet. Matcha has approximately 70 times the antioxidants of orange juice and 9 times the beta-carotene of spinach. Matcha literally has more antioxidant power than blueberries. The health benefits of Matcha may include:
A 1999 study featured in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition demonstrated that green tea extract rich in catechins has thermogenic properties and promotes fat oxidation beyond that explained by the tea’s caffeine content. It was found that consuming green tea increased thermogenesis (the body’s rate of burning calories) from 8-10% to 35-43% of daily energy expenditure. Another study demonstrated that exercising immediately after drinking matcha green tea resulted in 25% more fat burning during exercise. Both studies suggest matcha green tea can enhance both resting metabolic rate and fat burning.
Fit To A Tea
The tea’s power is so super because entire leaves are dissolved in water rather than steeped in bags. Instead of throwing away the leaves, you ingest all their antioxidant powers.
Green Tea Matcha Powder: Matcha is the revered tea used in the highly ritualized Japanese tea ceremony. The first tea seeds were brought to Japan during China’s Tang Dynasty to be used as a medicine by priests and noblemen. Cultivation for religious use began in the late 12th century by a Japanese Zen Buddhist priest who ground the tea leaves. The second innovation that became integral to the formal tea ceremony was using a bamboo whisk to combine the ground leaves with hot water. The priest’s treatise, translated roughly as Tea Drinking is Good for Health, maintained that tea was a virtual cure-all.
In the Kyoto district, specific cultivars have been propagated to produce plants for the highest-quality shade-grown tea. The nutrients are many times more concentrated compared to those of lesser-quality green tea commonly found in tea bags. The slow growth of plants cultivated for matcha also increases the content of theanine, an amino acid whose calming effects counterbalance the tea’s caffeine. Matcha growth and production is a very complex and refined process, specific to the country of Japan. Matcha leaves are handpicked, and only the youngest, tenderest leaves at the tip of the tea plant are harvested. The plants are carefully shade grown for several months prior to picking, in order to boost chlorophyll content. These precious, extremely green leaves are then inspected, lightly steamed to halt any enzymatic breakdown, and ground to an ultra-fine powder on traditional stone grinders.
The Japanese use matcha in cooking and baking, and in lattes and smoothie drinks. To make matcha with a bit of traditional panache, put a teaspoon in a preheated bowl, add a third cup of hot (not boiling) water and agitate with a bamboo whisk. Enjoy the grassy taste and benefits.
Hers is my most-blended recipes of the summer 2013:
Green is good. And this shake is green. Due to the green tea matcha. And its tastes amazing. So if you are one of those people who gets scared off by all things green – please try this! You might be surprised how delicious green can taste.
Matcha is my favorite discovery from my trips to Tokio. It has officially stomped out my coffee cravings during the workweek. Instead of capuccinos – I crave Green Tea Matcha Smoothie.
And this matcha stuff is kind of magical – from my experience anyways. It is the ground up whole leaves of green tea – its why you are getting more antioxidants than you would get from normal tea. I’ve never really like plain steeped green tea. But matcha smoothies and shakes drive me wild.
The powdery matcha has a tea bitter taste with an accent of sweet – kind of like rice milk sweet or a grass. And when you blend it with sweet things like bananas, almond milk and watermelon it takes on a whole new flavor that I am addicted to. Some chia seeds and protein too for added nutrition value and texture.
Protein Green Tea Matcha Smoothie
3/4 cup soy or almond milk
1 cup watermelon cubes, frozen
1 1/4 bananas, frozen
1/2 – 2 tsp matcha green tea powder (I usually use about 1 tsp)
vanilla protein powder
sp chia seeds
Super Green Tea Matcha Smoothie
* 2 bananas
* 2 peaches
* 1-2 cups fresh spinach
* 1 tsp Matcha Powder
* 1/4 – 1/2 cup coconut milk, unsweetened
* 1 Tbsp Chia Seeds or Flax Seed, optional
* Hint of Spirulina
For more Exotic Matcha fruit smoothies, add: pineapple, pear, papaya, mango, or kiwi
Directions: Slice bananas and peaches into chunks or bite size pieces. Place in blender with the fresh spinach and Matcha Powder. Blend until smooth, adding in coconut milk to preferred consistency.
- Xin-Xin Zheng, Yan-Lu Xu, et al. Green tea intake lowers fasting serum total and LDL cholesterol in adults: a meta-analysis of 14 randomized controlled trials Am J Clin Nutr August 2011.
- Abdul G Dulloo, Claudette Duret, et al. Efficacy of a green tea extract rich in catechin polyphenols and caffeine in increasing 24-h energy expenditure and fat oxidation in humans. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, Vol. 70, No. 6, 1040-1045, December 1999
* Significantly increases energy (over 8-10 hours) without the caffeine ‘jitters’
* Improves mental alertness
* Increases calmness and reduces stress
* Boosts metabolic rate by 35-40% in regular drinkers, facilitating weight loss
* Powerful ‘anti-aging’ activity due to super-charged antioxidants
* Lowers blood pressure
* Decreases levels of LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol
* Super immune-boosting activity due to high levels of polyphenols and catechins
* Stabilizes blood sugar levels
* Powerful anti-biotic and anti-viral activity
* Strong blood cleanser/detoxifier and alkalizer due to high chlorophyll content