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Why I Switched from Coffee to Matcha

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at BU chapter.

When people first started replacing their coffee with matcha, I thought they were insane. I could never imagine my mornings without a nice cup of joe to wake me up and get my juices flowing. However, in my early 20s I started getting a lot of anxiety and, although I don’t believe coffee was the cause of my anxiety, I do believe the coffee was a trigger due to its high concentration of caffeine. After some research, I found that matcha does it all; It’s a fat burner, cancer-fighter, it increases concentration, and boosts energy. Plus, it has significantly less caffeine than coffee.

Matcha doesn’t only have less caffeine than coffee but it also processes caffeine differently in the body (thanks to L-theanine) to keep you energized for much longer than its competitor. L-theanine is an amino acid that improves the activity in the alpha frequency band. This, is turn, relaxes your state of mind while still keeping you energized. This amino acid also plays a large role in sharpening alertness and attention. Coffee and energy drinks, on the other hand, don’t have L-theanine, and therefore rely on the caffeine to release cortisol (the stress hormone) within the blood. Cortisol increases heart rate, blood pressure and is known as the body’s fight or flight response. This puts your mind on high alert… but not for long.

Credit: Zen Green Tea

With coffee and energy drinks, your energy levels peak and suddenly drop, but with matcha your energy levels remain sustained for about 4-6 hours. The L-theanine better harnesses caffeine and therefore, allows for the matcha to be released in the body over time. Sustained energy levels are ideal for students or professionals with large workloads.

It’s benefits go beyond keeping you focused and energized — matcha also keeps you healthy. It is a powerhouse of antioxidants! To match the antioxidant potency of a single serving of matcha, one would have to drink 10 cups of brewed green tea! Not only does it have more antioxidants than one bag of green tea, but it also has significantly more antioxidants than goji berries, acai berries, and blueberries! Why do antioxidant levels matter? Well, antioxidants happen to be the chemical compounds that work as the body’s defense agents. They prevent infections, diseases, and aging.

Credit: Matcha Source


One of my favorite quotes is by Danielle LaPorte, a bestselling Canadian author, that goes, “Raise your standards and the universe will meet you there.” I believe that applies to everything in life including what you put into your body. Filling the body with nutrients and wholesome ingredients will elevate your state of health and lifestyle. Switching from coffee to matcha may be difficult, but remember, progress is impossible without change. If you choose to switch to matcha, you can find it at many of your local cafés including Starbucks and Pavement (and you may even find me there getting some matcha too).


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Writers of the Boston University chapter of Her Campus.