Every day, more people shift to natural ways of living and eating—which simply implies that more natural foods and herbal supplements find their way in our local grocery stores.
This is great but it comes with one challenge: deciding the right product for you. In fact, it is even more challenging to differentiate the health benefits of similar products.
Matcha and Sencha green teas are such similar products that offer a wide range of health benefits but tend to have slightly different nutritional profiles.
While the two types of green tea are derived from the same plant species—Camella sinensis—they not only differ in how they are grown and processed but also have varying nutritional benefits.
Before delving deeper into these differences, let’s highlight some of the Sencha and Matcha green tea benefits.
Sencha and Matcha Green Tea Benefits
Both being green teas, Sencha and Matcha contain epigallocatechin-3-gallate (or EGCG), a polyphenol that is believed to be responsible for the many health benefits of green tea.
The two green teas also boast of amino acid, L-Theanine, which plays a critical role in calming the nervous system and can cross the blood-brain barrier.
Some of the benefits that you stand to gain by drinking these green teas include:
- Prevention of heart diseases
- Have anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits
- Destroys viruses and bacteria
- Prevents certain types of cancer
- Protecting the body against arthritis
- Protecting the brain against neurodegeneration and damage from conditions such as stroke
- Protects against diabetes
- Boosts immune system
In a nutshell, Sencha and Matcha have a plethora of health benefits that often attract tea drinkers. However, because they are grown, processed, and consumed differently, one could be inherently better for you than the other.
Knowing a few differences between the two teas is, therefore, worthwhile.
Sencha vs. Matcha
Growth and Processing
The first difference between these two green teas is their texture and shape. While Sencha often comes in rolled loose-leaf form, Matcha is a fine, stone-ground powder.
Secondly, the two teas differ in terms of the conditions in which they are grown in: loose-leaf Sencha is often grown in direct sunlight while Matcha is grown in the shade just before they are harvested.
Additionally, when brewed, most of the nutrients of Sencha are filtered out by an infuser or tea bag. On the contrary, Matcha tea powder is neither brewed nor infused.
The leaves are stone-ground into a fine powder—which means that the entire leaf (and all its nutrients) is consumed.
Matcha tea powder often boasts of more vitamins B6 and beta-carotene compared to Sencha. On the flip side, Sencha has higher amounts of vitamin C and E.
Additionally, sun exposure increases the amount of Catechin or EGCG in green tea leaves. Therefore, Sencha has more Catechin than Matcha.
Grown in the shade, Match boasts of more caffeine and L-theanine than Sencha and other types of green teas. L-theanine is known to enhance the production of alpha waves in the brain, and is often associated with mental alertness and relaxation.
It also influences serotonin and dopamine production. This good balance between L-theanine and caffeine in Matcha allows it to generate steady energy devoid of jitters or crash that you are likely to get with coffee and other energy drinks.
Sencha and Matcha are very healthy beverages to consume and are full of minerals, polyphenols, amino acids that are beneficial to your health.
Hopefully, we have covered much of what you need to know about the benefits and potential nutritional differences between the two types of green teas.
Now you can relax and make yourself a cup of Sencha or Matcha tea and reminisce about the journey that these versatile teas made from the fields to your lips.