Like most things in life, questions of beauty and body ideals are rarely black and white.
All those "aspirational" Instagram accounts might tout skinny minnie yoga bodies next to the stuff we should eat, drink, and buy to reach far-flung body goals, but at the end of the day, losing weight (and more importantly, loving your body) can't be boiled down to a single miracle food or an awesome ab exercise.
A quick Google search will find that matcha green tea powder is being touted as the new weight loss miracle. In this blog post, we here at Maru Matcha wanted to take some time to really explore this trend, and talk about the facts and fictions of dieting, weight loss and matcha.
First things first, let's just get one thing straight: There are few absolutes in science, and even fewer (aka, zero) miracles.
In recent years, matcha and green tea have been studied for their weight loss and fat burning abilities to solid results: a study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition points clearly to EGCG in green tea as having potentially beneficial effects on the body's cardiovascular and metabolic system. Another study from Khon Kaen University showed that green tea reduces body weight in subjects through increased fax oxidation and energy expenditure. These findings are further studied in experiments conducted by scientists at Provident Clinical Research, whose findings also correlate with the idea that green tea catechins influence the sympathetic nervous system (SNS), which may act "synergistically" with green tea catechins to increase fat oxidation and energy expenditure.
Dozens more studies such as these three examples could be cited, and needless to say their results are exciting. Could it be that green tea really is the premo superfood we've been told it is? Matcha must be an even more potent weight loss food, since I'm consuming whole leaves instead of steeping it, right?
Ergo, matcha will help me lose weight without lifting a finger? Cool!
Um, not exactly.
You see, there are two fundamental problems with the idea of touting a single food as a "miracle":
1). Maintaining a healthy body takes a lifetime of love, not a single cup
By promoting matcha, and in particular Maru Matcha, as a weight loss supplement, we are asking our customers to buy into the idea that maintaining a healthy body and mind can come from a single product. We will never put matcha in the same category as weight loss pills and health food fads.
For real: Matcha makes us feel amazing, and when we feel good, we look good. That's what less caffeine, less sugar, and plenty of antioxidants and amino acids can do. But matcha is no cure-all. If matcha helps you achieve your fitness goals, it's by reminding you to take time for yourself, to be creative with what you eat and drink, and to be aware of what you are putting in your body.
2). Maru Matcha doesn't support singular and unrealistic body goals
Every once in a while, we here at Maru Matcha feel a certain pressure to go the way of so many of our competitors and tout our matcha as a "skinny tea" by placing our beautiful Japanese matcha next to a slim and toned woman, usually in a bikini.
It's fantastic to want to work toward a goal in terms of your physical and mental health, but the pervasive attitude in the "health" community about a singular body image--one that is both unrealistic for many women and unrepresentative of the plurality of beautiful forms and physiques out there--just ain't us.
Scientific studies are rarely meant to be definitive proof of any one claim, just like matcha isn't going to magically help you shed the last couple pounds that even daily visits to the gym won't help you shake off.
We love that our customers are thinking about and taking care of their bodies with nutritious whole foods, plenty of exercise and meditation, and the right kind of caffeine (ahem, matcha), but we also want to send a clear message:
Love who you are, not who you think you're supposed to be!