Stress-reducing effect of cookies containing matcha green tea: essential ratio among theanine, arginine, caffeine and epigallocatechin gallate.
Heliyon. 2019 May ;5(5):e01653. Epub 2019 May 7. PMID: 31111111
The stress-reducing effect of matcha, a high-quality fine-powdered green tea, has recently been clarified by animal experiments and clinical trials. However, the effect of matcha added to confectioneries is not clear. One aim of this study was to evaluate the relationship between matcha components and their stress-reducing effect in mice that were loaded with territorially-based stress. Adrenal hypertrophy, a marker of stress, was significantly suppressed in stress-loaded mice that had ingested matcha components, displaying a caffeine and epigallocatechin gallate to theanine and arginine (CE/TA) ratio of 2 or less. Another aim was to evaluate, in humans, the stress-reducing effect of matcha in cookies using test-matcha (CE/TA = 1.79) or placebo-matcha (CE/TA = 10.64). Participants, who were fifth year pharmacy college students, consumed 4.5 g of matcha in three pieces of cookie daily for 15 days. Salivaryα-amylase activity, a stress marker, was significantly lower in the test-matcha group than in the placebo group. These results indicate that the CE/TA ratio of tea components is a key indicator for the suppression of stress. Moreover, matcha with a CE/TA ratio of 2 or less displays a stress-reducing effect, even if it is included in confectionery products. Such products may also benefit individuals who have no habit of drinking matcha as a beverage.