Coffee Vs. Matcha: Which One Is Better For You?

Matcha, a powdered form of green tea, has been growing in popularity among the wellness-minded in recent years, but coffee, the classic caffeinated beverage of choice, still has plenty of fans. Whether you prefer the earthy flavors of a bright green matcha or the magical aroma of a freshly brewed pot of coffee, both have been shown to be healthy additions to your diet.

Recently, matcha has become more readily available in the mainstream than it once was. The powdered green tea is said to taste sweeter and creamier than a more standard green tea, and the powder is whisked into hot water rather than simply dropping a teabag into a boiling cup. It's packed with antioxidants, has been shown to lower blood pressure as well as inflammation, and can even improve dental health (via WebMD). 

If you're a coffee lover, don't feel left out of the health talk: There are plenty of pros to enjoying your daily cup or two of coffee. Aside from the obvious caffeine-induced energy boost, coffee is also loaded with antioxidants and has been linked to a lowered risk of Alzheimer's, Parkinson's and dementia. It's even one of the few legal stimulants that professional athletes can use to improve performance (via Healthline).

Are there down sides to coffee or matcha?

Like most things, though, matcha and coffee both have limitations. Both contain caffeine (though matcha contains only about a quarter the caffeine of coffee), so if you want to have a full night of sleep, you may want to avoid drinking them late in the day (via Healthline). Coffee can also cause stains on teeth, so if you sip throughout the day, take care of your dental hygiene as well (via Crest). 

The biggest problem with matcha and coffee isn't in their pure forms; the problem stems from the proliferation of lattes and other calorie-laden drinks made with matcha or coffee as a base. A cup can easily go from zero to 600 calories once milk products, flavoring, and sweeteners are added. A small matcha latte at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, for instance, is a whopping 317 calories. If you want to avoid the added sugars and calories, stick to plain, unflavored options.