Effects of Matcha green tea on heart rate variability and physiological and metabolic responses in young adult females
Introduction: Compared to other green teas, higher intake of multiple phytochemicals is achieved with Matcha green tea consumption. Green tea consumption is known to have metabolic effects but is also consumed for supposed calming effects. The aim of the present study was to examine the effects of encapsulated Matcha green tea on heart rate variability metrics during supine rest, as well as on physiological and metabolic responses during both supine rest and moderate-intensity exercise.
Methods: Healthy females (n=8, age: 22±3 yrs, body mass: 68±11 kg, height: 162±5 cm) volunteered. The study employed a placebo-controlled, randomised cross-over design. Time-domain heart rate variability metrics during supine rest (n=5) and physiological and metabolic responses using indirect calorimetry techniques during supine rest and 60-min of moderate-intensity (~ 4-METs) treadmill walking (speed: 4.4±0.5 km·h-1) were measured following 3 weeks of 3 g·day-1 of Matcha green tea or placebo.
Results: During supine rest with Matcha green tea, all participants had lower heart rates by 13±7% (P=0.01, d= -1.45), higher mean beat-to-beat RR intervals by 16±9% (P=0.03, d=1.25), higher SDNN by 44±32% (P=0.01, d=0.76) and higher pNN50 by 139±139% (P<0.01, d=1.28). Matcha green tea had no effects on the physiological and metabolic responses during supine rest and moderate-intensity treadmill walking (e.g. respiratory exchange ratio, placebo: 0.78±0.04; Matcha: 0.78±0.03, P=0.87). Fat oxidation during supine rest was correlated (r=0.75, P<0.01) with the moderate-intensity walking induced fat oxidation.
Conclusions: In young adult healthy females, Matcha green tea beneficially effects heart rate variability metrics during supine rest indicating an alteration in parasympathetic nervous activity and therefore suggestive of a relaxing effect. Matcha green tea did not change the metabolic responses during supine rest and exercise possibly due to the low respiratory exchange ratio in the female cohort. Future work should address the effectiveness of Matcha green tea during conditions of psychological stress.
Keywords: Matcha green tea, heart rate variability, rest, walking, substrate oxidation
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