Yerba mate has diuretic properties, so it helps us take care of our kidneys. In addition, it is also satiating and delays gastric emptying. Yerba mate is the drink par excellence in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and some areas of Brazil and is increasingly reaching more countries around the world. If we consume it without adding sugar, or accompanied by cookies or cakes, it can be used to lose weight. In this article you will learn more.
Yerba Mate and its Properties
This infusion of herbs consumed in South America and bitter taste is famous for its many advantages. It is prepared with the leaves, dried and ground, of yerba mate, a plant that grows in mountainous or jungle areas. Some people sweeten the drink with sugar, honey or sweeteners. However, it is said that “the true mate” does not carry anything but grass and hot water. The mate is drunk with a light bulb and a container (which bears the same name as that of the grass) and in summer you can also drink cold (for example, mixed with orange juice). It is recommended to consume yerba mate after eating.
Among the main properties of this yerba we can highlight:
1. It is Stimulating
Thanks to these properties we can “speed up” digestion and lose weight more quickly. This is because it contains matein, a chemical similar to caffeine.
“In addition, it can accelerate metabolism and energy, which burns fatter”.
2. It is Soothing
Although it shares some properties with coffee, the truth is that drinking this herb relaxes and calms emotions, thanks to theobromine and theophylline, two of its most significant components.
3. It is Satiating
By filling the stomach with liquid, it helps reduce the appetite sensation. However, we must bear in mind that it is not a substitute for food, since it does not provide all the necessary nutrients.
- It would be a good idea to have a cup in the middle of the morning so as not to “attack” a package of cookies or a tray full of pastries.
- Yerba mate delays the speed of gastric emptying and prolongs the feeling of fullness.
4. It is Antioxidant
Thanks to its antioxidants, yerba mate helps fight oxidative stress, improve skin health and eliminate free radicals from the body.
5. It is Anti-Inflammatory
Drinking mate several times a week significantly reduces inflammation. That is why it is recommended to those suffering from rheumatism, bronchitis, arthritis and other inflammatory diseases.
6. It is Diuretic
Drinking mate is a very good idea if we want to help our kidneys work better and stay healthy. In addition, it is also perfect in the face of fluid retention problems.
More Properties of Yerba Mate
This increasingly famous herb has other interesting benefits such as, for example, the ability to restrict the accumulation of lactic acid in the muscles. This allows maintaining high energy levels and increasing fat burning. Due to theophylline and theobromine the yerba dilates the bronchi and facilitates the oxygenation of the blood.
Contraindications of Yerba Mate
Although the moderate consumption of yerba mate reduces mental and physical fatigue, excessive drinking can cause insomnia, hyperactivity and concentration problems, and due to its caffeine intake. On the other hand, astringency and mat tannins can cause stomach discomfort, such as heartburn, or changes in bowel movements.
How to Consume Yerba Mate
Now that you know what the benefits of yerba mate are, the next thing is to learn how to consume this herb. The options are:
This is how it is taken in South America. You need a mate (container) and a light bulb.
- Heat the water without it boiling, and throw it on the grass.
You can also prepare an infusion, filtering the yerba or using it in ready-made bags.
- 10 g of yerba mate (1 tablespoon)
- 250 ml of water (1 cup)
- 10 g of sugar (1 tbsp) (optional)
- Heat the water until it boils.
- Put it in a cup and add the yerba mate.
- Let it sit for a few minutes and filter it if necessary.
- Take it as hot as possible. You can enzyme it to taste, with honey or stevia.
It is usual to take it in a bottle to take it cold and take advantage of the virtues similar to those of green tea.
- 40 g of yerba mate
- 1 l of water
- The juice of 1 lemon
- Fresh leaves of mint or spearmint (to taste)
- Ice cubes
- Heat the water and, when it boils, remove it from the fire.
- Pour it in a jar, add the yerba mate and let it rest for a few minutes.
- Filter and add the lemon juice.
- Add the mint leaves and ice cubes.
You can use the yerba mate infusion as a base to prepare smoothies or fruit juices.