Yerba mate is made from the plant Ilex paraguariensis for herbal tea. This tea, known simply as mate, is popular in parts of South America. The leaves and branches are dried, generally over a fire, and soaked in hot water for making herbal tea. Yerba mate might be served cold or hot. Yerba mate includes caffeine, a stimulant. It’s stated to have the strength of coffee, the health advantages of tea, and the delight of chocolate.
Here are some of yerba mate’s health benefits.
Yerba Mate Benefits
- Yerba maté (Ilex parguariensis) is a large amazonian tree, the leaves of which are used to make a tea. It is a very popular drink in many south american countries, easily rivaling the popularity of coffee in North America.
- Yerba maté is a great source of antioxidants, which makes it useful for a wide range of conditions from heart disease, to Alzheimers.
- It contains caffeine which gives it stimulating actions, as well as protective support for the heart, lungs, and brain. [1, 2].
- Yerba maté also provides support for the health of the heart through combating the development of high cholesterol, atherosclerosis, and obesity, all of which significantly increase the chances of developing heart disease.
- The stimulating actions of yerba maté are strong enough to produce a noticeable effect on supplying energy for the body, but also contains alkaloids similar to caffeine that reduce many of the side effects of caffeine without removing its benefits.
- Yerba maté is a popular weight loss tea, for its ability to improve metabolism, reduce appetite, and even has a modulatory action on several of the genes associated with obesity .
See: Ayurveda Herbs For Energy, Brain Fog & Chronic Fatigue
-It has many possible health benefits, though research and evidence is limited:
- May Help You With Belly Fat: Animal research studies reveal that yerba mate may lower hunger and boost metabolism, aiding weight loss. It appears to reduce the overall variety of fat cells and reduce the amount of fat they hold. Yerba mate might reduce hunger, boost the metabolic process, and increase the quantity of fat burned for fuel. This process might help you shed weight.
See: Natural Home Remedies For Obesity & Weight Loss
- Reduces Blood Sugar Levels: Yerba mate might help lower blood sugar levels and minimize the issues of diabetes. Yerba mate may enhance insulin signaling and blood glucose control. Nevertheless, the more human research study is required.
See: How to reverse prediabetes
- May Lower Heart Disease Risk
Yerba mate consists of antioxidant compounds, such as caffeoyl derivatives and polyphenols, protecting against heart problems. Cell and animal research studies also report that mate extract might offer some protection against cardiovascular disease. In humans, yerba mate seems to lower cholesterol levels. Yerba mate’s anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and cholesterol-lowering properties might help protect against heart disease.
- May Improve Mental Focus: Yerba mate caffeine content is more than tea, but less than coffee. Therefore, similar to any other caffeinated food or beverage, it may increase your energy levels and make you feel less worn out. Caffeine can likewise affect the levels of particular indicating particles in your brain, making it particularly helpful for your psychological focus. Several human research studies observed improved awareness, short-term recall, and reaction time in participants. Yerba mate can boost your energy levels and focus thanks to caffeine.
See: Functional Medicine For Brain Fog Treatment
- May Enhance Physical Performance
Caffeine is also understood to improve muscle contractions, reduce fatigue, and enhance sports performance by approximately 5%. Since yerba mate contains a moderate amount of caffeine, those consuming it can anticipate comparable physical performance advantages. The ideal amount of yerba mate to drink before a workout is presently unidentified. Yerba mate increases your body’s reliance on fat for fuel during exercise. It might likewise improve contraction and minimize fatigue, all of which may contribute to better physical performance.
See: Natural Treatments To Lose Weight
- Might Protect Against Infections: Yerba mate may assist avoid infections from bacteria, parasites, and fungi. One study found that a high dosage of yerba mate extract deactivated E. coli, a bacteria that causes gastrointestinal disorder symptoms like stomach cramps and diarrhea. Compounds in yerba mate may avoid the development of Malassezia furfur, a fungus responsible for flaky skin, dandruff, and certain skin rashes.
Lastly, research suggests that substances in it might offer some defense versus intestinal parasites.
Nevertheless, the majority of these research studies were done on isolated cells. It’s currently uncertain if these benefits are the same for humans, and more research is required.
Yerba mate may have some anti-bacterial, anti-parasitic, and anti-fungal properties. However, more research study is needed.
- May Boost Your Body Immune System: Yerba mate includes saponins, which are natural compounds with anti-inflammatory properties. It also offers small amounts of vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, and zinc. These antioxidants can enhance your body’s immune system and promote health.
Yerba maté is best taken as a tea. There are various traditional methods for preparing and consuming this herb with special utensils, which are an interesting method of consuming this herb,but are not necessary. The best way to consume this herb aside from its traditional method is with a french press. Use a liberal dosage of herb (10-15 g), and add about 500 ml (2 cups) of water and allow to steep for several minutes before consuming. This should be drunk often to make use of the full range of benefits this herb has to offer.
See: Ashwagandha for sleep before bed
The tea itself can be quite bitter, which many do not agree with, so by adding some stevia, honey, or mint, the flavor can be improved to taste.
Use it in
The traditional way of using yerba maté is in a group setting, and is consumed on a regular basis. You can mix yerba maté in with other herbal tea blends if you so choose.
- Pairs well with stevia for diabetic conditions.
- To improve concentration and memory such as with Alzheimer’s, or to aid with a heavy workload or other form of mental drain, combine with gotu kola or passionflower.
- For weight loss, combine yerba mate with guarana, and damiana. This combination has been found to prolong gastric emptying and reduces overall body weight over time .
Yerba maté contains caffeine despite what some online sources suggest. This alkaloid which can cause a spike in blood pressure, muscle jitters and anxiety. Those with high blood pressure should consult their doctor before consuming yerba maté. It should be noted however that these are short term effects and after a few days of regular consumption, a modulation within the adenosine receptors is achieved within the body these effects no longer occur. This physiological change is referred to as a tolerance.
Some older studies have suggested that yerba maté consumption increases the risk of certain cancers, although more recent studies have provided strong evidence of the opposite, suggesting it is useful in treating these conditions instead. .
Science and research
Yerba maté has been found to inhibit lipoxygenase, which is an enzyme found in the body that is involved in the inflammatory process. Some of the anti inflammatory actions of yerba maté are also suggested to be through its ability to reduce adipose mass (fat) which release messenger chemicals that promote inflammation throughout the body .
Yerba maté offers beneficial effects on heart health in several ways. It has been shown to combat the development of atherosclerosis (through inhibiting lipid peroxidation), antioxidant support, cholesterol inhibition, as well as modulation of some of the genes associated with atherosclerosis (paraoxonase-2) [3, 4, 7]. Yerba maté has been found to both lower LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol), while simultaneously increasing HDL Cholesterol (good cholesterol) . Increased cholesterol levels are one of the main markers for heart disease.
- Weight Loss
Caffeine, as well as the related alkaloid theobromine contained in yerba maté have both been found to produce a stimulating action on the central nervous system, and subsequently improve metabolism and fat burning. Other compounds in the herb promote satiety (the feeling of being full), and others modulate several genes associated with obesity. One recent study suggested that some of these effects are through interaction with the hypothalamus in the brain which is responsible for hunger, thirst, hormone, and temperature regulation. All of which are associated with weight loss or gain. [3, 4, 8].
Yerba mate is not likely to trigger damage to healthy grownups who drink it occasionally. Regularly drinking may bring an increased risk of cancer and caffeine-related side effects. These include migraines, headaches, and hypertension in some people. Pregnant women need to discuss with their doctor as excessive caffeine may increase the danger of miscarriage and low birth weight.
People taking medications should also consult with their doctors for any interactions.
Yerba mate may not be appropriate for everyone, and consuming it frequently at really hot temperature levels may increase your threat of certain cancers. However, this beverage likewise consists of different beneficial substances connected to impressive health advantages. Yerba mate isn’t likely to present a risk for healthy adults who periodically drink it. However, some studies suggest that people who drink large quantities of yerba mate over extended periods might be at increased danger of some types of cancer, such as cancer of the mouth, throat, and lungs. Talk to your doctor before trying any herbal product.