Thermogenesis & Matcha Tea: How Matcha Tea Helps You Lose Weight

Understand what it means to incorporate matcha tea in your weight loss regimen


Matcha has thermogenic properties. What does it mean? How does it affect me if matcha has thermogenic properties? These are just some of the questions that we hope to answer so that you will be able to continue with your matcha journey with an enlightened mind.


What’s thermogenesis?


Also referred to as the thermic effect food (TEF) or specific dynamic action, it’s the energy required to digest and process the food you eat. According to research, it’s responsible for up to 10% of your daily calorie expenditure but it’s reliant on a lot of factors: genetics, the amount of food you eat in one meal, and what kinds of food you eat.


For example, matcha has thermogenic properties which helps increase the body’s thermogenesis by 20 -25 % than normal. This is due to the epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG), a type of catechin. Catechins are antioxidants that fight against free radicals that leave your body vulnerable to sickness that comes with aging. EGCG has the highest concentration in matcha tea, and is the most active and researched compound in green tea.


Others include:


  • All forms of protein
  • Whole grains
  • Seeds and nuts
  • Certain fruits and vegetables


A lot of foods that’s part of a  “low carb, high protein” fall in this list because it’s been proven that proteins demand more energy for digestion than carbs or fats.


How does thermogenesis affect your metabolism?


The mere act of consuming food increases the demand to burn energy. Along with these, two vital processes involving fat is are affected: the impairment of fat burning mechanisms and the enhancement of fat storing mechanisms. The extent of these factors depend on your diet as some foods innately impair fat burning than others while some store fat more efficiently.


After digestion when the body is ready to distribute nutrients at the cellular level, where the role of the hormone insulin, whose job involves transporting nutrients into the cell, plays a great role. It inhibits lipolysis (the breakdown of fat cells for energy) and stimulates lipogenesis (the storage of energy in fat cells). This may lead you into thinking that insulin is the leading culprit for weight gain, but it is still in fact your energy intake. The rules are simple: if you eat more than you burn, you gain weight. If you eat less than you burn, you lose weight.


So what role do foods like matcha with high thermogenic properties  play in this?

Food’s thermogenic properties can contribute to weight loss because they demand more energy for digestion. But it’s not all that simple, because it all comes down to regulating the amount you consume them. You can still gain weight by eating too much and lose weight by consuming just the right amount. However, the pounds you shed may not move the needle much and is just a supplement to dieting, exercise and discipline.


It’s good in corporate food like matcha which has high thermogenic properties into your diet because most of them, such as the items listed,  are low in calories and satiating thus help you lose weight faster. With matcha increasing the body’s thermogenesis by 20 -25 %, more energy is consumed to digest it, thus the simple act of ingesting it contributes to your overall weight loss. It also helps that matcha tea in high in dietary fiber so much so that it can prevent insulin spikes and slow down the development of type 1 diabetes.


At the end of the day, the effect matcha tea or other high thermogenic property foods you ingest to lose weight will all depend on how much dedication you put into it.