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Waking up and making a big cup (read: vat) of coffee used to be undisputedly the most joyful moment of my morning. Without it, I didn't feel like me, and my day didn't run as smoothly, or with nearly as much energy.
A few months ago though, with my pandemic anxiety high (amiright?!), I decided that cutting out coffee was perhaps the best thing to do while I was struggling with high adrenaline anyway.
But, I wasn't going to go cold turkey... I needed an alternative, and so, I dug out an old packet of matcha powder from the back of my tea cupboard (my pride and joy FYI) and made myself up a cup.
Matcha is a type of Japanese green tea made by taking young tea leaves and grinding them into a bright green powder. The powder is then whisked with hot water.
I instantly remembered why I'd so loved the pure green tea powder for so many years: I felt energised without any of the coffee shakes or heart palpitations that I so often experienced after coffee, and my energy high lasted consistently all day.
What are the benefits of matcha?
After a few weeks, friends started commenting on my glowing skin (likely to do with the fact that matcha is packed to the brim with antioxidants) and the fact that, and this is the first time I've ever received such a compliment, "my eyes were brighter."
In fact, matcha has a whole heap of benefits, from boosting mood, to brain function and metabolism, all the while helping you glow from the inside out.
Studies have actually linked green tea to a variety of health benefits, like helping to prevent heart disease, type two diabetes and even encouraging weight loss.
Matcha powder also contains L-theanine, an amino acid that has been shown to reduce stress, which is the opposite to how a cup of coffee makes me feel.
It's not that I don't still swoon at the smell of a freshly brewed Americano, or stare longingly at a cappuccino when I'm out brunching, but the wellness benefits I enjoy from matcha make the swap entirely worth it.
Plus, I might still have a decaff coffee during the day so that I can enjoy the flavour and smell, but my energy stores? That's all pure green tea.