As more people seek relief from chronic inflammation, matcha is emerging as a potential antiinflammatory solution.
Keep reading to find out why inflammation is no match for matcha.
If you really want to up the ante against inflammation, buy our mushroom matcha tea blend. It combines two potent antiinflammatory adaptogens: cordyceps and matcha.
The mix of cordyceps mushrooms and matcha is good for you and delicious to boot.
What Is Matcha?
Matcha is a type of green tea that comes from the Camellia sinensis plant. It differs from regular green tea in the way it is grown and processed. The tea leaves used to make matcha are grown in the shade for several weeks before harvest time, which boosts the production of chlorophyll, amino acids, and antioxidants. That’s also how matcha gets its vibrant green color and umami flavor.
Unlike other types of green tea, matcha uses the whole leaf of the tea plant. Consuming the entire leaf provides a more concentrated source of nutrients and bioactive compounds compared to steeped green tea.
Our ceremonial grade matcha is the healthiest grade of matcha powder, and it comes from a farm in Japan. Drinking matcha in Japan is a well-established ritual that dates back to feudal Japan. The old-school way of preparing matcha tea is by whisking it with a traditional bamboo whisk into hot water to form a frothy drink.
We know a quicker way to make your matcha tea frothy and creamy: use our electric whisk and prepare your favorite matcha drink within seconds.
What Is Inflammation?
Inflammation is the body's natural response to injuries or foreign invaders like bacteria, viruses, or toxic chemicals. When they enter the body or we sustain an injury, our immune system sends its first responders to start healing the injured tissue. Inflammatory cells and cytokines respond by stimulating the production of more inflammatory cells.
So inflammation is a good thing—until it isn’t. Let’s learn about acute vs chronic inflammation.
What Is Acute Inflammation?
Normal inflammation (sometimes called “acute inflammation”) is useful and protective. It’s how our body protects itself against invaders and heals.
Here are the typical symptoms of acute inflammation:
- Loss of function
These symptoms persist for as long as they are needed for healing, and then go away when the healing is done.
What Is Chronic Inflammation?
Sometimes the inflammatory response fails to "turn off" and continues even when it’s no longer needed. This can happen for a few reasons:
- The immune system overreacts and stays activated, attacking healthy tissue. This is the case with autoimmune diseases.
- The body is exposed to a persistent external low-grade trigger like stress, poor diet, toxins, or allergens.
- Inflammatory signaling molecules accumulate and keep stimulating more inflammation.
- Anti-inflammatory regulation fails, and pro-inflammatory pathways dominate.
When inflammation persists and becomes chronic, it can start damaging healthy tissue over time. This leads to the various diseases and disorders associated with chronic inflammation.
Here are some of the disorders that runaway inflammation can either cause or contribute to:
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Psoriatic arthritis
- Inflammatory bowel diseases like Crohn's and ulcerative colitis
- Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
- Type 2 diabetes
- Cardiovascular disease
- Metabolic syndrome
- Alzheimer's disease
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Autoimmune diseases like lupus and multiple sclerosis
Chronic inflammation is believed to play a role in the development and progression of all these conditions. Reducing inflammation through lifestyle changes and anti-inflammatory therapies can help manage symptoms and lower disease risk.
What Causes Inflammation?
The most common cause of inflammation in the body is the presence of bacteria or viruses. Physical injuries also trigger an inflammatory response.
Here are the most common causes of inflammation:
- Infection: bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites can trigger an inflammatory immune response. Untreated chronic infections like gum disease keep stimulating the immune response.
- Injury: physical trauma, burns, cuts, lacerations, abrasions, frostbite, and tissue damage from toxins, radiation, etc. initiate acute inflammation for healing.
- Immune response: histamine release during allergic reactions causes inflammation.
- Chemical irritants: substances like toxic chemicals, spicy foods, and plant toxins (like poison ivy) can chemically irritate and inflame tissue.
- Autoimmune diseases: the immune system chronically attacks the body's own tissues, keeping inflammation levels elevated.
- Obesity: excess visceral fat activates inflammatory pathways. Obesity-related metabolic dysfunction also contributes.
- Smoking: chemicals in smoke trigger ongoing lung inflammation and damage.
- Stress: both physical and emotional stress stimulate inflammatory markers like CRP and cytokines.
- Poor diet: excess sugar, refined carbs, processed foods, and unhealthy fats are thought to promote chronic inflammation.
- Toxins: pollution, heavy metals, pesticides, and other toxic exposures can act as persistent low-grade triggers.
How Is Inflammation Treated?
Inflammation can be treated with a variety of medications and treatments. The most commonly used are corticosteroids and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
While these options can produce effective and immediate results, they often come with unpleasant and harsh side effects.
Some possible side effects of corticosteroids are:
- Changes in mood
- Delayed wound healing
- Weight gain
- Increased appetite
- Muscle weakness
- Lower resistance to infection
While NSAIDs are generally considered safer than corticosteroids, possible side effects include the following:
- Stomach ulcers and bleeding
- Kidney problems
- Heart disease
- Liver toxicity
- Asthma flare-ups
- Rash and itching
People are actively searching for natural remedies with minimal to no side effects. Modern research has confirmed the potent anti-inflammatory compounds found abundantly in matcha. When consumed regularly, matcha may provide anti-inflammatory benefits safely and gently over time.
Anti-inflammatory Properties of Matcha
Matcha has gained popularity not only for its unique flavor but also for its potential health benefits, including potent anti-inflammatory properties. The anti-inflammatory effects of matcha can be attributed to its rich composition of bioactive compounds, particularly antioxidants like catechins and epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG).
EGCG is one of the most powerful antioxidants in matcha. Read all about it in our in-depth guide to epigallocatechin gallate.
Antioxidants In Matcha Fight Oxidative Stress
Catechins (such as EGCG) are a type of polyphenol found in matcha. Catechins possess potent antioxidant properties, which are crucial for reducing inflammation.
Antioxidants neutralize free radicals and reactive oxygen species (ROS). These molecules cause oxidative stress, an imbalance between the production of free radicals and the body's ability to counteract their harmful effects.
Catechins, and other polyphenols neutralize free radicals and inhibit their development. By reducing oxidative stress, antioxidants help reduce inflammation, support immune function, and contribute to overall health.
According to a 2009 article, “as antioxidants, polyphenols may protect cell constituents against oxidative damage and, therefore, limit the risk of various degenerative diseases associated with oxidative stress.” Oxidative damage may also cause many cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases and cancers.
Other mechanisms by which polyphenols may be protective against cardiovascular diseases are antioxidant, anti-platelet, anti-inflammatory effects as well as increasing HDL, and improving endothelial function.
Matcha’s rich antioxidant composition helps protect the heart from inflammation, bad cholesterol, atherosclerosis (plaque build-up in the arteries), and other heart issues.
Combined with the heart-friendly benefits of Cordyceps militaris, our matcha mushroom blend contains all the necessary agents to tackle any cardiovascular problem. Keep your heart healthy and sip on our matcha tea with cordyceps.
Powerful EGCG Against Inflammation
Epigallocatechin gallate, or epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), is a potent compound from the catechin family that is present in Camellia sinensis. In most cases, it is oxidative damage that leads to chronic inflammation in the body. By fighting free radicals and lowering oxidative stress, EGCG helps reduce inflammation.
In a 2011 study on rats with spinal cord injuries, treatment with EGCG led to reduced activity of myeloperoxidase, which is an indicator of inflammation. EGCG also decreased expression of inflammatory markers such as tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α), interleukin-1β (IL-1β), and others.
The results showed that [myeloperoxidase] activity was significantly decreased in EGCG-treatment groups. Attenuated TNF-α, IL-1β, Nitrotyrosine, iNOS, COX-2, and PARP expression could be detected in the EGCG treated rats. Also, EGCG attenuated myelin degradation.
Higher levels of TNF-α and IL-1β mean that inflammation is present in the body. These levels were much lower in the rats treated with EGCG. Nitrotyrosine, iNOS, COX-2, and PARP are other types of markers related to inflammation. The results of the study found that the rats treated with EGCG had lower levels of these markers, indicating the potent role of EGCG in helping to reduce inflammation in the rats' bodies.
Can Quercetin Lower Inflammation?
Quercetin is a flavonoid—a type of polyphenol to which catechins belong—found in matcha. It has extraordinary antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Quercetin is like a natural firefighter for inflammation.
It fights off free radicals, calms down inflammation signals, and makes blood vessels healthy. By lowering inflammation, quercetin can support the immune system and improve cardiovascular health.
Quercetin exhibits significant heart related benefits as inhibition of LDL oxidation, endothelium-independent vasodilator effects, reduction of adhesion molecules and other inflammatory markers, the protective effect on nitric oxide and endothelial function under conditions of oxidative stress, prevention of neuronal oxidative and inflammatory damage and platelet antiaggregant effects. (Patel, et. al.)
This fancy terminology basically means that quercetin can:
- Stop the harmful oxidation of LDL cholesterol (the “bad” cholesterol), which contributes to artery-clogging plaque formation.
- Improve blood vessel function by helping them relax and widen, which promotes better blood flow. This effect happens without relying on the inner lining of blood vessels (endothelium), making blood vessels more responsive.
- Reduce inflammatory markers by decreasing the presence of molecules that promote inflammation.
- Protect nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is important for healthy blood vessel function. Quercetin helps protect nitric oxide and the cells lining blood vessels from damage, even in the presence of oxidative stress.
- Shield nerves from damage.
- Prevent platelet clumping, which can reduce the risk of harmful blood clots.
All of these actions together make quercetin a great ally in the battle against inflammation and its harmful effects on the heart and body.
Is Chlorophyll Anti-Inflammatory?
Chlorophyll is a natural pigment in matcha that acts as a powerful antioxidant. It gives matcha its vibrant color and contributes to its nutritional value.
Thanks to shade-growing, matcha tea has increased chlorophyll content, which is responsible for its unique vibrant colour. Chlorophyll and its derivatives exhibit strong antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activity. (Kochman, et. al.)
Chlorophyll helps protect against free radical damage, aids in detoxification, and helps the body fight against cancer and inflammation. Here are some of the ways this green pigment reduces inflammation:
- Chlorophyll acts like a shield by intercepting and neutralizing harmful free radicals. These free radicals are like tiny troublemakers that trigger inflammatory processes. Chlorophyll prevents them from escalating the inflammation in the body.
- Chlorophyll is like a cleaning crew for toxins. It grabs onto harmful substances, helping your body get rid of them. This "cleaning" process reduces the potential triggers for inflammation.
- It has the power to calm down inflammation-promoting enzymes.
- It promotes an inflammatory-free environment. Chlorophyll supports a healthy gut, which is the foundation of your body's overall well-being. When the gut is healthy, it helps keep inflammation at bay.
Incorporating matcha into your diet can offer a delightful and healthful way to reap the benefits of chlorophyll. Beyond its role in photosynthesis, chlorophyll acts as a natural defender against inflammation. What better reason to consume matcha tea every day?
We don’t mean to brag—okay, maybe a little—but our mushroom matcha powder may be the tastiest way to get your daily dose of antioxidants. While our organic matcha contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory compounds, this special tea blend takes these benefits to the next level.
We enhance our premium Japanese matcha with cordyceps mushrooms to create a supercharged inflammation-calming beverage.
Benefits of Drinking Matcha in the Morning
The best time to have matcha tea is in the morning or early afternoon. Matcha will provide an energetic boost that can get you through the day. We’re head over heels for matcha’s ability to provide a sustained boost in energy without making us feel antsy. Drinking matcha tea later in the day or right before bed can make you feel a bit too overstimulated to sleep.
Since cordyceps mushrooms should also be consumed earlier in the day, the best time to drink our mushroom matcha tea is in the morning, just around breakfast. One delicious cup will keep you up and running throughout the day, providing a plethora of nutrients and antioxidants.
How to Prepare Matcha Tea
The healthiest way to consume matcha is with good old matcha green tea. Preparing traditional Japanese matcha tea involves pouring hot water over matcha powder and whisking it up until combined and frothy.
Or, if you’re not that into tradition, use our electric whisk and froth that baby up in a matter of seconds.
Is It Okay to Drink Matcha Every Day?
There is no reason why you shouldn’t indulge in a nice cup of premium quality matcha tea every day if you stick to the recommended daily amounts. The myriad health benefits and nutrient-rich profile make it an excellent supplement to any diet.
Drinking green tea matcha in excessive amounts can cause some mild side effects, like an increased heart rate, anxiety, an upset stomach, or diarrhea, so make sure you pace yourself and don’t overdo it.
Don’t forget that matcha contains caffeine. If you don’t want the negative effects of caffeine—those similar to drinking a lot of coffee every day—limit your caffeine intake and go slow with your matcha tea. Moderation is key.
How Much Matcha Can I Drink?
If you’re a beginner to matcha, starting with smaller amounts is a good idea. To get all of the benefits of green tea, 1–2 cups per day are best, with a typical serving of matcha being between 2 and 4 grams. This amount can yield anywhere from one to even four cups of tea, depending on how strong you like it.
Once your body adjusts to the beneficial effects of matcha, you can increase your intake.
That’s why our 10-single unique blends of matcha and cordyceps are perfect for everyday enjoyment. Each sachet contains 3.5g of the premium matcha cordyceps powder. Dump the contents of one sachet into your mug, pour hot water over it, mix well, and enjoy.
Matcha for Inflammation FAQ
Does green tea fight inflammation?
Green tea, including matcha, contains potent antioxidants known as tea polyphenols, most notably catechins like EGCG. Catechins in green tea have been associated with anti-inflammatory effects in both animal studies and human research.
Studies have shown that the phenolic acids in green tea can help reduce inflammation by modulating immune responses and inhibiting inflammatory pathways. Regular consumption of green tea, as part of a balanced diet, may contribute to managing inflammation and promoting overall health.
Does matcha help with pain?
Certain compounds found in matcha, such as tea polyphenols and EGCG, possess anti-inflammatory properties that may help with pain management. These compounds have been studied for their potential to modulate inflammatory pathways and reduce the pain associated with many health conditions.
Adding matcha to your diet, combined with a healthy lifestyle, could contribute to pain management due to its potential anti-inflammatory effects.
Is matcha good for the immune system?
Matcha may modulate our immune function and help regulate the immune system. Matcha contains tea polyphenols, which have powerful immune-modulating effects. They may help enhance the body's defense mechanisms by influencing immune cell activity and promoting an anti-inflammatory environment.
Does matcha reduce swelling?
The anti-inflammatory properties of matcha may contribute to reducing swelling. EGCG has been studied for its ability to modulate inflammatory pathways and inhibit certain enzymes that promote inflammation. While its effects on reducing swelling may not be immediate, adding matcha to your diet over time could contribute to managing inflammation and potentially reducing swelling in the long term.
How quickly does matcha work?
The effects of matcha are different for every person and depend on factors like individual metabolism and overall health. Some benefits, such as antioxidant support and potential anti-inflammatory effects, may accumulate over time with consistent consumption. Matcha may be a potent herb with extraordinary medicinal properties, but it is not a quick-fix solution; its benefits are best experienced as part of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle.
Who should not drink matcha?
While matcha is generally considered safe for most people, individuals who are sensitive to caffeine should consume it in moderation due to its high caffeine content. People with certain medical conditions should consult their healthcare provider before adding matcha to their diet.
People taking certain medications or with specific dietary restrictions should seek medical advice before making significant dietary changes.
Is 4 teaspoons of matcha too much?
Four teaspoons of matcha is a relatively high amount and has a higher caffeine content. Excessive amounts of caffeine can cause jitters, a rapid heart rate, dizziness, nausea, and other adverse effects.
Start with 1–2 teaspoons (about 2–4 grams) of matcha per serving. This amount provides all the health benefits of matcha without excessive caffeine. As with any dietary choice, moderation is key.
Is matcha anti-cancerous?
Research suggests that the tea polyphenols, particularly EGCG, found in matcha and green tea may have anti-cancer properties. Some studies have shown that “matcha can affect proliferation, viability, antioxidant response, and cell cycle regulation of breast cancer cells.”
Antioxidants in matcha could inhibit the growth of cancer cells and interfere with certain pathways involved in cancer development. Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) induces apoptosis in cancer cells, triggering their self-destruction and preventing their uncontrolled growth.
Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG), which constitutes the principal constituent of green tea, exhibits antiproliferative, anti-inflammatory, antimutagenic, and antioxidative activities. EGCG can strongly engender apoptosis and inhibit growth in several types of cancers, including colon, kidney, breast, and brain cancers as well as leukemia… (Chen, et. al.)
While matcha's potential anti-cancer effects are promising, it's important to remember that it's not a substitute for medical treatment.
Why does matcha make me feel better?
The feeling of well-being that some individuals experience after consuming premium, organic matcha can be attributed to several factors. Matcha contains L-theanine, an amino acid that has been associated with relaxation and reduced stress. The combination of caffeine and L-theanine in matcha can provide balanced, focused energy without the jitters often associated with caffeine.
Also, matcha's potential anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects may contribute to an overall sense of vitality and well-being.
Why is green tea a superfood?
Green tea is often considered a superfood due to its rich content of beneficial compounds. One of the standout components is EGCG, a potent antioxidant found in green tea. However, the amount of EGCG found in matcha is much higher than that of traditional green tea. EGCG can do so much for you, including boosting your metabolism, aiding in fat burn, and potentially reducing belly fat.
Green tea also contains L-theanine, which supports cognitive function and provides a calm energy boost, differentiating it from the jitters associated with coffee.
With its array of antioxidants and potential contributions to fat metabolism, green tea earns its status as a superfood and a powerful adaptogen.
Does matcha heal your gut?
Matcha has shown potential to positively impact gut health, although it doesn't inherently "heal" the gut. Matcha contains both prebiotics and probiotics that may contribute to a healthier gut environment.
Prebiotics are non-digestible fibers found in certain foods that serve as nourishment for beneficial bacteria residing in the gut. They help promote the growth and activity of these good bacteria, supporting a healthy gut environment. Probiotics are live microorganisms that, when consumed in adequate amounts, can provide specific health benefits by positively influencing the gut microbiota and improving gut health.
Incorporating matcha into a diet rich in whole foods, antioxidants, prebiotics, and probiotics can support gut health.
Is it better to drink matcha with milk or water?
This choice depends on your preferences and dietary goals. Mixing matcha with water preserves its original flavor and the full range of antioxidants and nutrients. On the other hand, combining matcha with milk (or milk alternatives) creates creamy matcha lattes, which can be a tasty way to enjoy matcha while incorporating protein and calcium from the milk.
Keep in mind that adding milk to your cups of matcha may reduce the absorption of certain antioxidants. Opting for matcha lattes made with unsweetened or plant-based milk can provide a better balance between taste and nutritional goals.
Khalatbary, A. R., & Ahmadvand, H. (n.d.).Anti-Inflammatory Effect of the Epigallocatechin Gallate Following Spinal Cord Trauma in Rat. PubMed Central (PMC). https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3639740/
Therapeutic potential of quercetin as a cardiovascular agent - PubMed. (2018, July 15). PubMed. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejmech.2018.06.053
Kochman, J., Jakubczyk, K., Antoniewicz, J., Mruk, H., & Janda, K. (2020, December 27).Health Benefits and Chemical Composition of Matcha Green Tea: A Review. PubMed Central (PMC). https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26010085
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