Yerba mate is a shrub found in the rainforest of South America. A country such as Argentina, Chile, Paraguay and Brazil is where yerba mate can be found naturally. The leaves can be made to brew a strong tea and is a nationally made drink. It is also an alternative medicine source made to counteract a variety of health concerns.
Yerba mate can be taken in tea form to help neutralize free radicals in the body. Studies have shown that yerba mate backs a larger punch than vitamin C when it comes to protecting cells and reducing the effects of aging on the body.
Yerba mate helps to Diminish Heart Problems and Promotes Weight Loss. A study conducted on healthy adults that are considered overweight, yerba mate, added to other herbs, was found to alter the weight of the adult significantly. Those that consumed the herbal mixture three times a day for 45 days dropped a significant amount of weight. Since yerba mate is regarded as a stimulant for the nervous system it is able to burn calories and breakdown carbs in the body during your normal exercise routine.
They also noted that they felt fuller quickly and their craving for food also decreased. The extract of yerba mate helps to reduce the dysfunction of the hearts muscle which is a condition that is found in those that suffer from a coronary blockage that restricts blood flowing to the heart.
Some of the other benefits include:
- Acts as a detoxifier to help boost the immune system.
- Aids in relieving allergies.
- Increases mental alertness and accuracy.
- Prevents the growth of bacteria responsible for bad breath.
- Provides the body with a combination of caffeine and alkaloids to help the body sustain energy. The amount of caffeine in the Yerba mate is comparable to the standard amount found in coffee. However, since the effect of the caffeine is balanced by the various nutritional attributes, the effect of the caffeine in “caffeine sensitive” people the effect may not be the same.
- Yerba mate is also known to fight against gastro-intestinal disorders by increasing the flow of bile in the body.
How to Make Yerba Mate Tea
Yerba mate is medicinal and a unique herb. It can be brewed as a tea from the leaves and the small twigs of the shrub. Unlike regular teas that are served in a tea pot or kettle yerba mate should be served in a gourd with a metal straw or a ‘bombilla’. You can also purchase mate cups made especially for drinking Yerba mate, they are generally made from metal, wood or ceramic.
- Pack the dry Yerba Mate in the cup or gourd half way to the top.
- Make sure the powdery flakes are mixed into the rest of the dry mate by placing your hand on the top and flipping the cup upside down and giving it a few shakes. This will help you to avoid the straw or ‘bombilla’ from being blocked.
- Bring the larger stems closer to the top of the gourd. This will help filter the powdered leaves. It is best to do this step once you have completed step 2. Keeping your hand on the top of the gourd completely on the side and shake it back and forth. Tilt the gourd with the right side facing up so the Yerba mate remains on one side.
- Insert the straw carefully into the empty side of the gourd so it does not disturb the arrangement of the herb and as far from the powdered leaves if possible. Pour cold water into the empty space just before you reach the top of the powder and wait for absorption.
- Add hot water just as you did with the cold water. However, make sure the water is not boiling hot since it will give the Yerba mate a bitter taste.
- If you are new to drinking Yerba mate and are used to stirring the tea resist the urge to do so. Once you begin drinking through the straw/bombilla you will run the risk of clogging it.
- Lastly, make sure you clean the gourd or whichever cup you created the tea in and allow it to air dry.
You can drink Yerba mate cold or hot in the traditional method mentioned above or through other alternatives. An alternative method to making Yerba Mate is to prepare it your coffee maker, simply substitute where you would put the coffee grinds and put the yerba mate instead.
I have actually made this myself and it is actually really tasty! If you try it let me know by leaving a comment :) I look forward to hearing from you.