Can you drink too much matcha? Possible side effects and more

Can You Drink Too Much Matcha Green Tea Powder? Quality, Possible Side Effects, and More

Matcha makes you feel amazing, so chances are you might be wondering what the healthy daily limit of drinking matcha may be, right?

Matcha tea is generally safe and very beneficial to consume, though drinking too much in a day could be potentially harmful. This is primarily due to matcha’s high caffeine content. Very high doses of matcha can be problematic and cause a runny tummy, headaches, an unstable bladder, irritability, and insomnia. Luckily, studies show that you can avoid all these unpleasant side effects by having no more than eight grams of matcha per day, and you can reap all the benefits of matcha by enjoying 2-3 servings a day. (7) (8)

Keep reading for a full breakdown of just how much matcha is too much, possible side effects, how quality and testing comes into play, and what to keep in mind if you’ve made matcha a part of your daily routine.

How much is too much matcha caffeine?

According to studies, you should try to limit yourself to no more than eight cups of quality Matcha in a day— this is because, like coffee, quality Matcha is relatively high in caffeine. When it comes to drinking premium matcha such as Matchakari Matcha powder, you can expect around 35-50mg of caffeine for every serving (which is a gram of matcha powder) or cup of matcha you enjoy. (3)

So, having eight cups of premium-grade matcha in one day would mean you are safely under the limit of ingesting 400mg of caffeine. According to studies, up to 400mg of caffeine a day is generally considered safe for the average healthy adult, though going over this amount could potentially lead to unpleasant side effects. (2)

More generally, if we aren’t taking quality into account, it’s estimated according to FDA guidelines that you would need to consume more than eight servings of matcha tea or eight grams of matcha in a day before being over the recommended limit of caffeine.

The possible side effects of drinking too much matcha

Matcha is typically safe when consumed in small and medium amounts as a beverage, thought with anything, it’s important not to overdo it. Moderation is key. Due to its caffeine content, more than eight grams of green tea matcha powder, or eight prepared cups of matcha, has been linked to the following side effects: (4) (6)

  • Headaches
  • An upset stomach
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Irritability
  • Diarrhea  
  • Constipation
Possible side effects of too much matcha

Side effects due to poor quality matcha

Suppose the matcha you are regularly consuming is slightly bitter to the taste and lacks a vibrant green color. In that case, you are likely not drinking high-quality matcha that could be potentially harmful. This is because the quality of your matcha impacts the possible unpleasant side effects associated with consuming matcha in excess. (6) 

When you grab a matcha on the go and don’t know the quality, have to be wary of less-premium brands. 

Poor quality matcha may even contain fluoride, lead, or arsenic, all of which can be absorbed by the green tea plant during the growing process. Symptoms of arsenic poisoning include: (5) 

  • Muscle cramps
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • An irregular heartbeat
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhea
  • Tingling in the toes and fingers
  • Skin changes such as lesions or warts
  • Red or swollen skin

Possible side effects of poor quality matcha. Know what to look for

Matchakari matcha is vigorously tested and absolutely pure

With our matcha, you can rest assured that you are getting the safest, highest quality, and best matcha available. We go above and beyond the most stringent international food-safety certifications, with all of our matcha offerings being regularly tested in a six stage process for purity and potency. 

All of our Matcha is Organic

We only offer USDA-certified organic matcha grown in Japan. No pesticide, no synthetic chemical fertilizer, non-GMO by using industry-leading instrumentation that tests for over 500 different types of pesticides.

No Radiation

With each batch of matcha we make, we conduct a radioactivity test screening for radioactive isotopes. Radioactivity is NEVER detected at unsafe levels on our tea farm in Uji, Kyoto. In fact, the area where our farm is has some of the purest soil in all of Japan to grow matcha.

No lead/heavy metals in our matcha

We test all our matcha for heavy metals, including lead. You can rest assured that none is detected at the most stringent CA Prop 65 limits (lead limit is 0.5 ppm, particle per million.)

Tested for healthy compound concentrations

Our matcha is routinely tested for the level of healthy concentrations of brain-boosters compounds it contains. Our matcha is tested to have incredibly high levels of L-theanine, synergetic caffeine, antioxidants, and even theobromine.

Is there such a thing as a matcha overdose?

If this has crossed your mind, you can relax. You cannot overdose on matcha and do not need to worry about any life-threatening events to come from overdoing it. While it’s recommended to discuss matcha usage with your physician, it’s good to know there are no proven dangers of drinking too much matcha.

Besides the infrequent report of a short-lived upset stomach, researchers are confident that the most potent preparations of matcha tea, even when enjoyed multiple times per day, pose little to no risk. (1) 

Can regularly drinking matcha hurt my liver?

The short answer —no! 

Due to matcha containing the compound EGCG, people may have the concern matcha could be potentially damaging to the liver. The good news is that no, matcha is not known to damage the liver or any other organs when consumed as a whole-leaf powder. 

According to numerous studies and scientific reviews, there are no risks of liver damage from the regular ingestion of matcha green tea or any genuine green tea product.

You should, however, be wary of synthetic green tea concentrates, which may be of concern. Furthermore, if you have any liver diseases such as hepatitis or cirrhosis we recommend talking to your doctor about drinking green tea beverages. (1) (4)

The bottom line - ask yourself what amount of matcha will optimize wellness

So, rather than ask how much is too much, ask how much is best? Two cups per day? Three cups per day? That depends on you as an individual and what you are looking to get out of your matcha. Please look at our article on how much matcha you should drink in a day for optimum wellness. 

References

  1. Chacko, S. M., Thambi, P. T., Kuttan, R., & Nishigaki, I. (2010). Beneficial effects of green tea: A literature review. Chinese Medicine, 5(1), 13. https://doi.org/10.1186/1749-8546-5-13
  2. Jahrami, H., Al-Mutarid, M., Penson, P. E., Al-Islam Faris, M., Saif, Z., & Hammad, L. (2020). Intake of Caffeine and Its Association with Physical and Mental Health Status among University Students in Bahrain. Foods, 9(4), 473. https://doi.org/10.3390/foods9040473
  3. Kochman, J., Jakubczyk, K., Antoniewicz, J., Mruk, H., & Janda, K. (2020). Health Benefits and Chemical Composition of Matcha Green Tea: A Review. Molecules, 26(1), 85. https://doi.org/10.3390/molecules26010085
  4. Mead, M. N. (2007). Diet and Nutrition: Temperance in Green Tea. Environmental Health Perspectives, 115(9). https://doi.org/10.1289/ehp.115-a445a
  5. Ratnaike, R. N. (2003). Acute and chronic arsenic toxicity. Postgraduate Medical Journal, 79(933), 391–396. https://doi.org/10.1136/pmj.79.933.391
  6. SUZUKI, Y., MIYOSHI, N., & ISEMURA, M. (2012). Health-promoting effects of green tea. Proceedings of the Japan Academy, Series B, 88(3), 88–101. https://doi.org/10.2183/pjab.88.88
  7. Temple, J. L., Bernard, C., Lipshultz, S. E., Czachor, J. D., Westphal, J. A., & Mestre, M. A. (2017). The Safety of Ingested Caffeine: A Comprehensive Review. Frontiers in Psychiatry, 8. https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyt.2017.00080
  8. Willson, C. (2018). The clinical toxicology of caffeine: A review and case study. Toxicology Reports, 5, 1140–1152. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.toxrep.2018.11.002