Sep 14 2015 In Ask the Herbalist By Kenneth Roberts
Yerba Mate - More Than Just a Healthy Energy Drink
“The strength of coffee, the health benefits of tea, and the euphoria of chocolate”, all in one beverage. Yerba Mate (pronounced YER-bah MAH-tay) is primarily sourced from South America and a common beverage of choice in Argentina, Brazil and Uruguay. It is often roasted, but can also be served green. Commonly used to provide energy and hydration, mate is traditionally enjoyed from a gourd and sipped through a straw called a bombilla. Drinkers will pack the gourd half full and use the bombilla to filter it as they drink. Being a strong leafy herb, it will be resteeped several times throughout the day.
Mate contains many compounds that offer a variety of benefits for the body. It contains saponins that are known to boost the immune system and have anti-inflammatory properties. Saponins may help with chronic bladder infections and have even been seen to help modulate overactive immune responses like seasonal allergies.
But mate has been studied for many more benefits. It can be a stimulant and has been shown to be an effective weight loss aid by reducing appetite, increasing metabolism, and burning stored fat in the body. It even helps improve insulin sensitivity.
Studies have shown that mate contains vitamins A, C, B-1, B-3 and B-5 as well as vitamin E. Mate is also dense in a well-balanced mineral content like calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, selenium, sodium, sulfur and zinc. Vitamins and minerals from herbal beverages and teas can help increase assimilation of vitamins and minerals from other dietary sources by binding them together much like antioxidants bind free radicals in the blood.
One surprising study found that women at risk of osteoporosis who drink mate regularly had 10% more spinal bone density than those not drinking mate. So it even benefits calcium absorption and bone density.
Our Discover Teas House Blend, Minty Mocha Mate Madness has a great Roasted Mate that is great for energy, focus and clarity. MetaboTea has our Lemon Mate to accentuate the weight loss properties. Whether you enjoy mate roasted or green, by itself or in a blend, yerba mate can be very useful to boost your day as well as your health!