First of all - I'm huge fan of Green tea - I drink at least one cup of green tea every day. I use only leafy tea. Usually I go for Japaniese green tea from Spring season. Highest quality as possible (by cost of course).
I didn't drink Chinesse tea at all. Because they contains pesticides and usually companies from Japan process tea gently with high level of security check.
So few weeks ago I found Matcha tea... and I fall in love immediately! It's basically finely milled green tea from Japan.
You can prepare this tea with cold water - you get refreshing Ice Tea! Or with warm /NOT HOT/ water to get warmer variant.
For example my hubby love it with milk /coconut milk/ as a Ice Tea - milky drink.
I order mine on matcha-tea.cz but I'm pretty sure that you can find many more companies. Just be sure to get some which is in organic quality and from Japan if it's possible.
This one is packed in portions in bags, which I love so much! You can bring just one bag with you to make great tea almoust anywhere! No measuring... :)
I love their cute shaker too. 'Cause shaker is the best way how to prepare you icetea from Matcha tea! It's same like your protein powder - you have to mix it very well with liquid to get great drink and shaker is the easiest way. Also you can bring your shaker with you if you travel (you cannot bring witht you your fancy food processor - you know... )
On matcha-tea.cz you can find some great value package. For example two boxes of tea (30 portions each) with shaker for free - which I order immediately :)
As you can see it's very fine powder:
And...... you can use it for baking too. For example to pancakes!!!! Or to ice cream /my favorite way/.
There are many health benefits as well:
One glass of matcha is equivalent of 10 glasses of standart green tea in terms of its nutritional value and antioxidant content. In reality, the only way to truly take advantage of green teas full potential is to consume the entire leaf. The health benefits of matcha tea exceed those of green tea because when you drink matcha you ingest the whole leaf, not just the brewed water.
Matcha also contains a unique, potent class of antioxidant known as catechins, which are not found in other foods. Since over 60% of the catechins in matcha are actually EGCg, a daily matcha regimen can help restore and preserve the bodys integral well-being and balance. The catechin EGCg (Epigallocatechin-3-Gallo) provides fight against HIV, cancer and many other disorders and diseases.
Matcha provides you powerful arsenal of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and amino acids in a way no other green tea can. Matcha contains more antioxidants than blueberries, wolfberries, pomegranates, orange juice and spinach.
Matcha is packed with exponentially more antioxidants according to the latest innovation in antioxidant research. Using the testing method known as ORAC (oxygen radical absorbance capacity), experts at Tufts University discovered that matcha possesses many times more ORAC so than pomegranates or blueberries. Matchas ORAC rating is a mighty 1300 units per gram, compared to pomegranates 105 units per gram or blueberries 91 units. Human body needs about 3600-4800 ORAC units per day.
Matcha is rich in L-Theanine, a rare amino acid that actually promotes a state of relaxation, wellbeing and increase a brains functioning. L-Theanine is common in every teas, matcha may contain up to five times more of this amino acid than common black and green teas. L-Theanine may help to increase memory functioning, learning and ability without any possible side-effects from caffeine, which is a natural component of green tea. Therefore, bowl of matcha promotes concentration and clarity of mind without any of the nervous energy found in coffee.
Matcha is ideal for diabetics, because it prevents the formation of glucose in blood. Catechins, which Matcha tea contains can block enzymes, that break up complex compounds into sugars.
Matcha supports your body's ability to burn food 4 times faster than normal. According to a study in the American magazine Clinical Nutrition, regular consumption of Matcha tea can improve the combustion process, also known as thermogenesis from normal 8-10% to a 35-43%.
According to the magazine Muscle and Fitness, Matcha helps to burn body fat and it is recomendet to consume it after sport activities.
The tea leaves are grown in the shade and that is the reason for their greener color and therefor Matcha tea contains more chlorophyll than ordinary green tea.
Matcha has strong detoxifying effects resulting from the amount of chlorophyll, which eliminates heavy metals and chemical compounds in body.
Matcha helps reduce cholesterol and sugar in blood. Matcha contains no sugar. It means, that on glycemic index it reaches zero. One tea cup of Matcha contains about 3 grams of fiber.
To increase the potential of antioxidants, which Matcha tea contains, you can try to mix it with a dash of lemon or lime juice. You can prepare for example, refreshing iced Matcha tea.
(info from page: http://matcha-tea.cz/clanek/benefits-of-matcha-tea)