Did you know that most benefits of the purest and most powerful green tea on the planet - matcha - are linked to a unique and rare phytonutrient called L-Theanine? Read this post to discover:
- The incredible story of matcha green tea
- What benefits of L-Theanine you’ll immediately notice from having your cup of matcha
- How to find real matcha that actually has these benefits
Year 1191. Zen Master Eisai sat in still meditation - bird songs filled the bamboo forest around him while the crisp morning dew formed on his silent face - his meditation was so deep, not a soul could tell if he was man or statue.
He had just returned to his native Japan after a long sea journey - carrying with him two things that were about to change the course of history forever.
The first was secured in one side of his long brown robe - the very first of the Zen scriptures.
His closed hand held the second. He carefully opened his palm and there they were. Seeds. These seeds would grow into one of the most powerful plants we’ve come to love today…. Tea had arrived to Japan.
He told his disciples, “Tea is a miraculous medicine for the maintenance of health, it is the elixir that creates the mountain-dwelling immortals”.
EISAI’S SECRET ELIXIR
Fast forward almost 1000 years to the present and science has finally unlocked Eisai’s secret - we now know why he called this special tea the ‘elixir of the mountain-dwelling immortals’.
Green tea contains a unique and extremely rare phytonutrient called L-Theanine - you cannot find it anywhere else in nature in such quantities.
It’s this very nutrient, that has profound effects on your body and mind… No wonder it was initially only made available to meditating monks, the Japanese royal family and of course the ruling Shogun - head of the samurai warriors.
But: this wasn’t just a simple green tea they were drinking - the secret cultivation, growing, harvesting and processing practices were perfected to ensure the highest levels of L-Theanine were made available - They Called It Matcha.
Matcha is considered the highest quality, purest and most concentrated form of green tea. It’s a powdered tea leaf that is cultivated, harvested and prepared in a very special traditional Japanese way - to ensure the most effects and the finest taste.
And... its effects and taste are directly related to the contents of L-theanine. The higher the levels of L-theanine in matcha - the finer and less bitter the taste and more profound the effects.
Due to matcha’s effects it was only available to meditating monks, Japanese royals and Shogun
GENUINE HIGH QUALITY MATCHA IS VERY RARE
Today, sadly most matcha is either very low quality or not matcha at all (just green tea powder) - low in L-Theanine and not worthy of the title of ‘elixir’.
You can easily tell this by the taste and colour.
Matcha should not be bitter. The highest quality matcha should be smooth, creamy and a vibrant - almost electric - green.
Matcha that is a faded-green has most probably been sitting around for a while and has oxidised and lost its nutrients, meaning it doesn’t have much to offer.
Only the finest quality organic matcha, such as Organic Burst Matcha, will be the highest in L-theanine.
The higher L-theanine in matcha - the finer and sweeter its taste and more profound its effects
>> Read on to discover what it can do for your mind and body >>
WHAT IS SO SPECIAL ABOUT L-THEANINE IN MATCHA?
1. MAKES YOU FOCUSED AND CLEAR-MINDED WHILE KEEPING YOU CALM
Matcha was the drink of choice for monks that aspired to sit in meditation for many hours at a time! They needed to stay awake, alert and focused, yet at the same time relaxed and calm.
A 2008 study showed that L-Theanine had a significant effect on mental alertness yet the participants remained relaxed and calm without agitation. The authors stated in their findings that this was due to its “direct influence on the central nervous system.”
L-Theanine has also been shown to change your brain wave patterns. Studies as early as 2001 already concluded that this change in brain wave frequency can lead to increased focus and the ability to better ignore distracting visual information while trying to perform highly demanding tasks.
A study showed L-Theanine improved mental alertness yet participants remained relaxed and calm
2. INCREASES CREATIVE THINKING & PROBLEM SOLVING BY BOOSTING ALPHA BRAIN WAVE POWER BY 75%
The same 2008 study mentioned above found L-Theanine lead to a greater increase in alpha brain wave activity compared to placebo. Since then there have been many studies on what this actually means from a mental performance perspective.
For example, a 2015 study published in the international journal Cortex, linked the alpha frequency band with creative thinking. They stated that “alpha activity in frontal brain areas is selectively involved in creativity”.
A little help to shift your brain wave distribution in order to solve a difficult problem, get over a mental block or start thinking outside the box can be indeed very satisfying!
3. HELPS KEEP YOU COOL & COLLECTED WHILE UNDER PRESSURE
Don’t we all wish we could just shrug off negativity, stay calm and level-headed when in a high pressure, confrontational or stressful situation?
Well, in 2007, a double-blind, placebo controlled, study was published in the journal Biological Psychology showing that L-Theanine helped reduce heart rate and other stress responses while participants were given high pressure tasks to complete. The researchers stated this was likely due to L-Theanine reducing sympathetic nervous activation.
They therefore concluded that “L-Theanine could cause anti-stress effects” during times of elevated tension.
4. BE MORE RELAXED WHEN SOCIALISING & LESS SELF CONSCIOUS
Back to those good old alpha brain waves! A 2016 study published in the award-winning biological and medical sciences journal, PeerJ, found alpha brain wave activity was linked to increased social confidence and decreased anxiety and feeling self conscious.
As we saw above, L-Theanine is capable of shifting brain wave frequencies into the alpha range and even boosting them up to +75%.
Even more interesting, the same study showed those with higher alpha brain wave activity were more trusting and were able to cooperate better with others around them.
L-theanine in matcha may help increase your social confidence and reduce feeling self conscious
5. INCREASE LEARNING ABILITY & BOOST YOUR MEMORY
Could it be a combination of all the above factors, or something else - scientists honestly do not have an answer yet as to why it happens - but L-Theanine has been shown in a 2008 study to positively affect learning and memory.
Whether you’re at college, university or on the job - we’re all continuously learning and trying to retain as much information as possible on a daily basis. L-Theanine in Matcha can help.
BONUS: NO JITTERS OR ENERGY SLUMP LIKE AFTER COFFEE
You’re probably thinking, does all this have any side effects? The answer is no.
How cool is that? The L-Theanine in Matcha does not have any of the negative effects that you may experience if you’re drinking coffee to try and achieve similar effects.
In 2015, researchers published a study showing that L-Theanine actually “eliminated the vasoconstrictive effect and behavioural effects of caffeine”.
This translates into ‘no jitters’ and ‘no slump’ like many of us feel from drinking coffee!
Real high quality matcha does not cause jitters, feeling uneasy and cold sweats like coffee may
NOW IT’S YOUR TURN
Only your immediate actions determine your future. Let’s make it one where you can feel alert and focused, yet calm and relaxed, creative and ready to face any tough situation with confidence - all by choosing only the highest quality, purest Matcha - that is not only benefiting you immensely but also helping organic family farmers in Japan preserve their culture and art of making the finest matcha.
You are the #Bursters