Do you ever get to about 4pm and have that real slump of energy where you are desperate to grab a coffee or reach for the biscuit tin? Did you know that doing this is the worst possible thing you could do for your energy levels? Biscuits are pure sugar and cause a huge spike in insulin followed by a drop in blood sugar which causes further cravings, reduced energy and the cycle continues. Instead what you need to reach for is something that is the perfect balance of protein, fat and carbs. Say hello to the energy ball… they’re super quick to make and can be stored in the fridge for a week or two. They contain protein and essential fats from the nuts, natural sugars from the dates, and the best bit a real boost of energy from the Matcha, not to mention a huge boost of antioxidants in the form of polyphenols.
I’m sure most of you reading this will have heard of the benefits of Matcha green tea. And if you haven’t or need reminding of why you should consume this little gem on a daily basis then read on…
A huge benefit of Matcha is the high concentration of antioxidants. One study found that Matcha has 137 times the polyphenols mainly, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) than regular green tea. In fact, this type of green tea contains over 60 x the antioxidants of spinach and 7 x the antioxidants of high quality dark chocolate. There is a lot of evidence that these polyphenols may have a protective effect against some types of cancer.
EGCG, found in high concentrations in Matcha, has been shown to increase the rate of burning stored fat as energy, as well as decreasing the formation of new fat cells. Other studies have shown that the catechins in Matcha increase the body’s rate of calorie burning each day and offered additional fat burning benefit during exercise.
A 2011 study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that the catechins in green tea had a significant effect on lowering LDL cholesterol. A 2013 Cochrane review also showed that regular green tea consumption was associated with lower blood pressure and an decreased risk of stroke.
The L-Theanine in green tea is known to help stimulate alpha brain waves. These waves are known for their ability to help increase focus and concentration. L-Theanine is also very calming.
The process of shading the Matcha leaves creates an increased amount of Chlorophyll, which research has shown may help the body eliminate heavy metals. Research is still lacking in this area, but many alternative doctors recommend Chlorophyll for this purpose.
The same antioxidants that make green tea protective, including EGCG, also helps support skin health by reducing inflammation and free radicals that accelerate skin ageing.
1 cup of Medjool dates
1 cup of almonds or cashews
1 tablespoon ground oat flour
1 teaspoon Matcha green tea powder
*You can purchase Organic Matcha Green Tea on my website under the ‘shop’ section.
1 teaspoon vanilla extract or powder
How to make
Simply place everything in to a food processor and mix until the nuts are broken down and the mixture is coming together a little.
Tip on to a plate and roll in to balls. This recipe will make 10 walnut sized balls. Roll in coconut or cacao nibs!
Eat on the go for a burst of natural energy and store in the fridge for a week or two in a sealed container.
I hope you have a happy and healthy week ahead