In the realm ofcaffeinated beverages, matcha stands out with its bright color, unique taste, and promise of a clear mind. We can talk endlessly about thebenefits of matcha, but many people have one important question on their minds: will drinking matcha make mefeel jittery?
How much caffeine is in matcha?
How does L-theanine make you feel?
Are there side effects to matcha?
Matcha contains caffeine, a natural stimulant and energy-booster. However, its unique chemical composition prevents you from feeling the nervous energy that normally comes with drinking coffee.
Keep reading, as we are about to unveil whyreplacing coffee with matcha offers a less jittery response to caffeine.
What is Matcha?
Matcha is an adaptogen. Adaptogens help your body adapt to stress and improve your overall health. Because of the meticulous process of growing and production, groundtea leavesrelease more bioactive compounds, making matcha a powerhouse ofhealth benefits.
- L-theanine, an amino acid that promotes relaxation and a sense of calmness while enhancing mental focus and concentration.
- Caffeine. It provides a naturalenergy boost while enhancing cognitive function and sharpening focus.
- Antioxidants. Matcha is high in polyphenols, the largest group of antioxidants found in tea leaves. Catechins are a type of polyphenolic flavonoid that packs serious antioxidant action, promotes cardiovascular health, fights cancer and inflammation, and boosts metabolism. Epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) is the most abundant catechin in matcha. It has potent antioxidant properties that protect the heart and aid in weight management. That’s why matcha is the perfect addition to yourweight lossjourney.
- Chlorophyll. Matcha’s green pigment is known for its detoxifying properties.
- Theophylline is anaturally occurringcompound that has been associated with potential bronchodilator effects: it may have beneficial impacts on respiratory health.
- Fiber. Dietary fibers found in matcha aid in digestion, help regulate blood sugar levels, and contribute to a healthy gut.
- Vitamins and minerals. Matcha is a good source of vitamin C, vitamin A, vitamin E, and B complex. It also contains potassium, calcium, iron, and magnesium, which are vital for overall health and proper bodily functions.
You’ll experience the benefits of these bioactive compounds if you buy our matcha mushroom tea. Our ceremonial matcha is shade-grown in Japan and combined with Cordyceps militaris for the ultimate powerhouse drink.
Check out our article on why ceremonial grade matcha might pack more health benefits than other types of matcha.
How Much Caffeine is in Matcha?
Caffeine is anaturally occurringstimulant in matcha. According to Kochman, et. al., thecaffeine contentin matcha is higher than in coffee. Matcha contains between 18.9 and 44.4milligrams of caffeine per gram.
This main ingredient in coffee andenergy drinkshas the potential to give you nervous energy when consumed in excessive amounts. Fortunately,matcha’s caffeine is less prone to cause jitters, for reasons we’ll explore below.
People typically respond well to moderate caffeine consumption, showing improved cognitive performance and focus. A study oncaffeine in matcha revealed that regular matcha consumption resulted in improved task performance and boosted attention and executive function in older adults.
The matcha group showed an increase in the amount of work after continuous intake, whereas the caffeine group only showed an increase in the amount of work for the [Uchida–Kraepelin test] after a single dose. Ingesting matcha with caffeine improves both attention and work performance when suffering from psychological stress compared with caffeine alone.
Caffeine sensitivity varies from person to person. Body weight, metabolism, and personal tolerance levels all influence how someone reacts to matcha's caffeine concentration. Some people may feel more alert and energetic, while others may be more sensitive to caffeine's effects and experience agitation.
Compared to other caffeine sources, certain compounds in matcha may mitigate the caffeine-induced jitters, contributing to a more balanced and concentrated energy. Read on to find out how L-theanine counteracts the overstimulating response to caffeine and why matcha is the ideal energy booster.
The Soothing Effects of L-Theanine
L-theanine is one of the most beneficialamino acids found in both matcha andregular green tea. It is best known for promoting relaxation and reducing stress without causing drowsiness. One of the most important effects of L-theanine is its ability to neutralize our body’s jittery response to caffeine.
L-Theanine forReducing Depressionand Anxiety
L-theanine has anxiolytic properties: it helps lower anxiety and stress. It stimulates the production of GABA, serotonin, and dopamine, which contribute to feelings of relaxation. GABA, serotonin, and dopamine are neurotransmitters that play important roles in regulating mood, emotions, and anxiety levels in the brain.
In fact, by activating the dopaminergic system, L-theanine also acts as an antidepressant.
Research shows that matcha improves the mental health of mice under social isolation stress.Matcha powder’s antidepressant-like behavior boosted the activity of the prefrontal cortex (PFC), which is responsible for producing dopamine and other mood-regulating neurotransmitters.
Animal studies also showed evidence that the neuronal circuits… underlie the development of depression. The PFC controls emotion, mood, and cognition, and depressed patients have a reduced volume of the PFC region and altered levels of GABA and glutamate cycling. Rodent studies also provide evidence of reduced synaptic density and decreased neuronal activity in the PFC region in mice subjected to chronic unpredictable stress. (Kurauchi, et. al.)
L-theanine’s effects onreducing depression and anxiety allow matcha to relieve the symptoms of anxiety and depression.
L-Theanine Boosts Mental Clarity and Focus
L-theanine creates a relaxed yet concentrated mental state by increasing alpha brainwave activity. It has been shown in studies that this improves attention and mental clarity.
L-theanine seems to employ electroencephalography (EEG) in order to increase activity in the alpha frequency band (the alpha waves linked to relaxation and alertness). A 2008 study found that L-theanine generated a significant increase in alpha activity over time. The results are important because they imply that “L-theanine, at realistic dietary levels, has a significant effect on the general state of mental alertness or arousal.”
People struggling with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have a hard time focusing and often experience difficulties with mental clarity and increased anxiety. By stimulating alpha activity in the brain, L-theanine shows potential for helping people with ADHD.
Will Matcha Make Me Jittery?
Unlike othercaffeinated beverages,matcha has the least potential to make you jittery. The unique combination of natural molecules in matcha stimulates the centralnervous system(CNS) and boosts alertness. Caffeine in matcha stimulates the CNS, while L-theanine soothes it and produces feelings of calm and relaxation.
Researchers found that the combination of L-theanine, caffeine, EGCG, and arginine lowered stress in mice. If the concentration of energizing caffeine and EGCG is lower than the concentration of L-theanine and arginine, which have calming effects, the matcha is more likely to have stronger stress-reducing effects. This can help decrease the caffeine-induced jitters.
Matcha essentially contains a high amount of caffeine, but if theanine is sufficiently high, the anti-theanine action of caffeine is counteracted… the counteracting effects of caffeine and EGCG against theanine and Arg are considered to be important. (Unno, et. al.)
L-theanine and caffeinetogether increase energy and focus while providing a state of calm alertness. You might hear this a lot when you read about caffeine and L-theanine—the state of calm alertness. It may appear to be an oxymoron, but this expression actually sums up the synergistic action of matcha’s top bioactive compounds. The state of calm alertness describes the feeling of being mentally attentive and physically calm. You’re concentrated and aware, yet relaxed and collected at the same time.
Caffeine pumps you with energy and focus, but L-theanine provides relaxation and ease of mind. Their combination allows you to be focused, attentive, and cognitively sharp while being calm and relaxed.
How to Avoid Matcha Jitters
To avoid the potential jittery effects of matcha, drink it in moderation and follow the recommended daily intake. We know matcha tastes heavenly—especially when paired with cordyceps mushrooms in our cordyceps matcha tea—but limit your intake and be mindful of your personal caffeine sensitivity.
If you are caffeine sensitive or prefer a more calm experience, choose ceremonial grade matcha, which has a slightly lower caffeine concentration than culinary grade matcha. Where to find the best ceremonial matcha in the country, you may ask? Right here Each of our matcha mushroom tea packets contains a powerful combination of L-theanine and caffeine that doesn’t make you feel like a jittery squirrel after ten shots of espresso.
Matcha vs Coffee
More and more people have startedreplacing coffee with matcha. Matcha tea and coffee have different potentials to cause caffeine-induced responses, but because of their distinct chemical compositions, matcha produces far fewer jittery sensations.
Caffeine (18.9–44.4 mg/g)
Caffeine (3.59–8.09 mg/g)
Niacin (vitamin B3)
Vitamins (A, C, E, K)
Riboflavin (vitamin B2)
Minerals (potassium, calcium, iron, magnesium)
The recommendeddaily matchaamount (3–4 g) contains anywhere between 56.7 and 177.6milligrams of caffeine. The same amount of coffee has 10.77–32.36milligrams of caffeine.
Because of the much higher caffeine content, you would think that matcha has better chances of giving you jitters and anxiety. Luckily for you tea enthusiasts out there, the opposite is true. The soothing presence of L-theanine balances out the higher caffeine content. This means that caffeine and L-theanine provide a more balanced and sustained energy boost without the jitters.
We’re not saying coffee is bad and you should toss it in the trash. As you can see, coffee contains many health-promoting molecules. But in terms of producing feelings of restlessness and nervousness, matcha wins by a long mile, simply because of the unique mix of L-theanine and caffeine.
Let’s summarize the differences and similarities between matcha tea and coffee.
- Matcha gives a more lasting and stable energy boost than coffee. Coffee is often linked to a fast energy spike and decline.
- While coffee can deliver an immediate energy boost, the effects are often fleeting, lasting only a few hours. Matcha slowly releases energy over time, delivering durable vitality throughout the day.
- Matcha provides mental clarity without the anxiousness associated with coffee.
- Both coffee and matcha are packed with antioxidants and can help in reducing inflammation and fighting oxidative stress.
- Matcha contains a higher concentration of beneficial chemicals and bioactive compounds, making it a more nutrient-dense alternative to coffee.
- While coffee is gentle on the digestive system, some people may experience discomfort or acidity concerns when drinking it in big quantities. Matcha is often easier on the stomach, and people with sensitive digestive systems may tolerate it better.
Matcha is an excellent alternative to coffee if you want a beverage that provides a more consistent and balanced energy experience.
Is Matcha Good for You?
Here are some reasons why you should include matcha in your everyday routine:
- Matcha can increase your energy levels and reduce fatigue.
- L-theanine in matcha helps relieve stress and anxiety.
- Matcha enhances brain function. Sometimes referred to as a “nootropic,” matcha has cognition-enhancing properties: it can reduce neuroinflammation and protect our brain from toxins.
- Brain fog? What’s that? Matcha’s L-theanine is great for providing mental clarity.
- Matcha has outstanding cardiovascular benefits. It can lowerblood pressureand even regulateblood sugar levels.
- Matcha promotes liver and gut health.
- Matcha’s EGCG is associated with promoting immune function. According toresearch, EGCG improves the function of T cells, an important group of white blood cells that serve important functions.
- Chatterjee, et. al. suggest that rinsing your mouth with matcha can reduce the amount of bacteria and improve gum health. Catechins in matcha are great for eliminatingbad breath.
Matcha benefits. Source: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7796401/
To get the maximum healthbenefits of matcha, include it in your balanced and healthy lifestyle, and always consume it in moderation.
Side Effects of Matcha
Matcha has no known long-term negative side effects. Its high caffeine content may cause headaches, heart palpitations, or insomnia in people sensitive to caffeine. These effects fade after the caffeine wears off.
If your caffeine tolerance is low, consuming matcha in excessive amounts may also lead to diarrhea or an upset stomach, but these, too, are temporary. Excessive amounts of caffeine may cause:
- An accelerated heart rate and palpitations.
- Feelings of restlessness or anxiety
- Problems with digestion (upset stomach, nausea, or diarrhea)
- Sleep disturbances
If you’re sensitive to caffeine or other ingredients in matcha, start with lower amounts and gradually increase the dosage.
The Best Time to Drink Matcha
We recommend drinking a nice cup ofmatcha teain the morning or late afternoon, when it will give you the most energy. The caffeine in matcha can make you feel antsy and keep you from falling asleep, so if youdrink matchalater in the day, you may feel too overstimulated to sleep.
The best time to drink matcha tea with cordyceps? In the morning, while eating a healthy breakfast, enjoy a cup ofmatcha green tea. One deliciouscup of matchawill keep you up and running throughout the day.
With our electric magic wand, whipping up your matcha tea has never been easier (or quicker). You can whisk at home or in your office when you’re out camping or visiting your out-of-town relatives. (Family reunions can be dearly stressful, so take a packet or two of our 10-pack matcha tea and find your inner zen before your family pushes all your buttons.)
Matcha Jitters FAQ
Who shouldn't drink matcha?
While matcha is typically healthy for most people, individuals sensitive to caffeine or those who have medical problems such as hypertension, heart problems, oradrenal glandabnormalities should consult their healthcare professional before drinking matcha.
Matcha contains a lot of caffeine, and while some women choose to have small amounts of caffeine while they are pregnant or nursing, it's generally recommended that they limit their caffeine intake to 200 milligrams per day, which is approximately onecup of coffee.
Does matcha heighten anxiety?
There’s no evidence to show that matcha can heighten anxiety levels—quite the opposite. Matcha contains both caffeine and L-theanine, which work synergistically to offer calm alertness without the jittery side effects sometimes associated with coffee orenergy drinks. This one-of-a-kind blend can help relieve anxiety and promote focused relaxation.
In one study, “thirty-nine students drank 3 g of matcha daily for 15 days, which led to a significant decrease in anxiety” (Sokary, et. al.). According to Kurauchi, et. al., “the residue part of matcha was also found to activate dopamine D1 and serotonin 5- HT1A receptors in an animal model, resulting in inhibited or reduced anxiety.”
Is 4 teaspoons of matcha too much?
Four teaspoons of matcha may provide a highercaffeine contentthan is optimal for most people. While individual tolerances do vary, it’s best if you stick to 1–2 tablespoons in asingle dayfor a sustained and longer-lasting energy boost.
How long do matcha effects last?
On average, the energizing and alerting effects of matcha can last for several hours due to the combination of caffeine and L-theanine. However, individual metabolism and sensitivity to caffeine may influence the duration of these effects, so they can vary from person to person.
Is it OK if I drink matcha every day?
It is perfectly safe todrink matcha teaevery day. Matcha offers a range of health benefits, including antioxidants, amino acids, and other beneficial nutrients. People in Japan drink matcha every day instead of coffee. They typically drink it in the morning but also during the afternoon, serve it to guests and friends, and even drink it several times a day.
Does matcha make you more awake than coffee?
Matcha may keep some people more alert and awake than coffee. Because of the combination of caffeine and L-theanine, matcha gives a balanced and persistent energy boost. While coffee might provide a rapid burst of energy, it can also trigger jitters and an energy drop. Matcha’s unique chemical structure produces a sense of calm alertness, increasing attention and clarity without the excessive wakefulness commonly associated with coffee.
Why does coffee make me anxious but matcha doesn't?
Coffee and matcha have very different chemical compositions, and these differences affect the way their respective caffeine content is metabolized. Coffee tends to provide a quick energy boost—despite the lower caffeine content—which can lead to jitters and increased anxiety. Matcha, on the other hand, contains L-theanine, an amino acid that mitigates the jittery response to caffeine, promotes relaxation, and reduces anxiety.
Is 55 mg of caffeine a lot?
55 mg of caffeine is considered moderate and is similar to that found in a cup of regular green tea. Individual caffeine sensitivity may vary, so be aware of your personal caffeine tolerance.
Is matcha better for weight loss than coffee?
Because of its ability to boost metabolism and fat burning, matcha may be a beneficial addition to a weight loss routine. The potent antioxidants in matcha are great sources of thermogenesis and fat oxidation. In combination with caffeine, which has serious fat-burning properties, matcha becomes a strong thermogenic agent that can aid the weight management process. Inone study, matcha increased the fat burning process in women during a 30-minute brisk walk.
While matcha can indeed help you get rid of body fat and lose calories, it should be combined withhealthy eatingand regular exercise for optimal weight loss.
How much matcha should I drink in asingle day?
1–2 cups of matcha per day can help you reap the benefits without overdoing it. If you’re a beginner to matcha, start with smaller amounts. Once your body adjusts to the beneficial effects of matcha, you can drink more cups per day.
Our cordyceps matcha 30 serving jar makes a greatstarter kit for the ultimate matcha experience.
Remember that onecup of matcha can contain up to 177.6 mg of caffeine. For comparison, onecup of coffeetypically contains 94.8 mg of caffeine. However, coffee lacks the soothing and caffeine-mitigating L-theanine, so generally speaking, you candrink matchaand notfeel jittery like you would with coffee.
Does matcha tea stain teeth?
Dental experts say that matcha doesn’t stain your teeth directly, but it can stain the plaque on your teeth. You can prevent this by brushing twice per day to remove the plaque before it turns to tartar.
Matcha is extremely beneficial to your oral health. It contains natural chemicals with antibacterial characteristics, which can help eliminate dental plaque, cavities, andbad breath. Vyas, et. al. found that catechins suppress bacterial growth in the mouth, while polyphenols in matcha can also help eliminatebad breathand boost general oral hygiene.
Can I incorporate matcha infood anddrink recipes?
Matcha can be a versatile ingredient that adds a unique flavor and vibrant color to variousfood recipes, including smoothies, baked goods, desserts, and even savory dishes. Here are some ideas for both food anddrink recipesthat incorporate matcha powder:
- Matcha overnight oats. Mix matcha powder with oats, milk of choice, and sweetener of choice. Let it sit in the refrigerator overnight for a delicious and nutritious breakfast.
- Matcha smoothie bowl. Blend matcha powder, frozen fruits, spinach or kale, and your choice of liquid (such as coconut water or almond milk). Pour the mixture into a bowl and top with granola, fruits, and nuts for a refreshing and nutritious meal.
- Matcha latte. Whisk matcha powder with hot water until frothy. Add steamed milk (or plant-based milk) and sweeten with honey or your preferred sweetener. Enjoy a creamy and soothingmatcha latte. Our matcha bowls are made especially for whisking matcha with a traditional matcha bamboo whisk.
- Iced matcha lemonade. Combine matcha powder with freshly squeezed lemon juice, water, and sweetener. Stir well, pour over ice, and savor a refreshing and tangy matcha-infused beverage.
There are manymatcha recipesthat include all kinds of ingredients. If you don’t enjoy drinking plain matcha tea, we recommend browsing through endless lists ofmatcha recipesto find a flavor profile that works for you.
Steeped green teamay be a bit boring to sip on, and it has a bit of a bitter note, but our organic matcha powder is uniquely delicious. It also contains cordyceps mushrooms, which give this blend an interesting flavor profile.
Can Ireplace coffeewith tea for better health?
If youreplace coffeewith tea, such asgreen tea, matcha, orblack tea, you can experience potential health benefits. Tea contains a variety of beneficial compounds, including antioxidants, polyphenols, and amino acids, which are known for their positive effects onhuman health.
There are variousfood recipes available that incorporate matcha orblack tea, allowing you to explore different ways to enjoy its flavors and reap the benefits.
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
Baba, Y., Inagaki, S., Nakagawa, S., Kobayashi, M., Kaneko, T., & Takihara, T. (2021, May 17).Effects of Daily Matcha and Caffeine Intake on Mild Acute Psychological Stress-Related Cognitive Function in Middle-Aged and Older Adults: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Study. PubMed Central (PMC). https://doi.org/10.3390/nu13051700
Kurauchi, Y., Ohta, Y., Matsuda, K., Sanematsu, W., Devkota, H. P., Seki, T., & Katsuki, H. (2023, January 22).Matcha Tea Powder’s Antidepressant-like Effect through the Activation of the Dopaminergic System in Mice Is Dependent on Social Isolation Stress. PubMed Central (PMC). https://doi.org/10.3390/nu15030581
L-theanine, a natural constituent in tea, and its effect on mental state - PubMed. (2008, January 1). PubMed. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18296328/
Unno, K., Furushima, D., Hamamoto, S., Iguchi, K., Yamada, H., Morita, A., Horie, H., & Nakamura, Y. (2018, October 10).Stress-Reducing Function of Matcha Green Tea in Animal Experiments and Clinical Trials. PubMed Central (PMC). https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10101468
Immunomodulating effects of epigallocatechin-3-gallate from green tea: mechanisms and applications - PubMed. (2013, September 1). PubMed. https://doi.org/10.1039/c3fo60076a
Chatterjee, A., Saluja, M., Agarwal, G., & Alam, M. (n.d.).Green tea: A boon for periodontal and general health. PubMed Central (PMC). https://doi.org/10.4103/0972-124X.99256
The therapeutic potential of matcha tea: A critical review on human and animal studies. (2022, November 23). The Therapeutic Potential of Matcha Tea: A Critical Review on Human and Animal Studies - ScienceDirect. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.crfs.2022.11.015
Anxiolytic activities of Matcha tea powder, extracts, and fractions in mice: Contribution of dopamine D1 receptor- and serotonin 5-HT1A receptor-mediated mechanisms. (2019, June 5). ScienceDirect. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jff.2019.05.046
Matcha Green Tea Drinks Enhance Fat Oxidation During Brisk Walking in Females - PubMed. (2018, September 1). PubMed. https://doi.org/10.1123/ijsnem.2017-0237
Vyas, T., Nagi, R., Bhatia, A., & Bains, S. K. (2021, November 29).Therapeutic effects of green tea as an antioxidant on oral health- A review. PubMed Central (PMC). https://doi.org/10.4103/jfmpc.jfmpc_943_21
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