Yerba Mate Promotes Weight Loss

Yerba mate has diuretic properties, so it can keep you hydrate while helping you eliminate retained fluids. It also promotes weight loss.
Yerba Mate Promotes Weight Loss

Last update: 09 October, 2022

Yerba mate, a drink made from the leaves and stems of the plant (Ilex paraguariensis) promotes weight loss. This is the drink of choice in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, and some areas of Brazil. These drinks are also known as mate, tereré, and mate cocido (infusion).

Formerly the drink with yerba mate was known as “Jesuit tea” or “Paraguayan tea.”

You can lose weight with it as long as you drink it with no added sugar, cookies or cakes. How? Continue reading to find out.

The properties of yerba mate

This bitter herb infusion is popular in South America due to its many advantages attributed to it. Asa per its name, you make it with the dried ground leaves of yerba mate, a plant that grows in some mountains and jungles.

Some sweeten the drink with sugar, honey, or sweeteners. However, some say that “true mate” has nothing but yerba mate and hot water.

The way you drink mate is through the metal straw in a container (which has the same name as the herb). During the summer, you can also drink it cold (for example, by adding orange juice to it). The best time to enjoy it is after a meal.

Here are some of its health properties:

1. Yerba mate helps speed up your metabolism

A person that lost weight by drinking yerba mate.

Thanks to its caffein content, yerba mate may accelerate your metabolism. In regard to this, a study took the following into account:

“Caffeine also accelerates metabolism and oxygen intake by body tissues and has the potential to produce significant effects on metabolic targets such as satiety, thermogenesis and fat oxidation (Wester-Terp-Plantenga and others 2006).”

According to popular belief, yerba mate helps burn more calories and thus, helps you lose weight faster. Some also say it can speed up digestion, which is kind of interesting.

Likewise, people used to say that it contained “mateine,” a supposed stimulant similar to caffeine. However, this was provenly a myth.

2. Yerba mate has a calming effect

While the properties of yerba mate are similar to those of coffee, drinking an infusion made of it is relaxes and calms you due to its content of theobromine and theophylline. These are two of its most significant components.

3. Yerba mate promotes weight loss by making you feel satisfied

A woman making a circle with her hands.

Because you’re basically drinking water with herbs, mate fills your stomach with liquids and fills you up. However, keep in mind that it’s not a meal replacement as it doesn’t have all the nutrients you need.

  • Drink a cup around mid-morning instead of “attacking” a pack of cookies or a tray full of baked goods
  • Yerba mate delays gastric emptying and keeps you full longer

4. Yerba mate is an antioxidant

Because it contains a good amount of antioxidants, yerba mate may help fight oxidative stress, which generally improves your overall health. Therefore, even the skin can look healthier.

This article may interest you: How to Cleanse Your Body with Yerba Mate

5. It’s anti-inflammatory

Mate’s hydrating properties promotes urination thanks to its diuretic effect that helps eliminate retained liquids and, consequently, inflammation.

6. Yerba mate is diuretic and promotes weight loss

As we already mentioned, drinking yerba mate can have a certain diuretic effect, which increases the frequency of urination. This isn’t only ideal for eliminating retained fluids but also to help the kidneys expel grit or stones (if any).

Other properties of yerba mate besides weight loss

This increasingly popular herb has other interesting benefits such as helping restrict the buildup of lactic acid in your muscles. This may allow you to maintain high energy levels and increase fat and calorie burning.

Due to its theophylline and theobromine contents, yerba mate may also help dilate the bronchi and facilitate blood oxygenation.

Contraindications of yerba mate

Moderate consumption of yerba mate may reduce mental and physical fatigue. You need to pay attention because if you drink too much of it, it can lead to insomnia, hyperactivity, and concentration problems due to its caffeine content.

Also, mate can upset your stomach due to its astringent properties and tannin contents. It can also lead to heartburn and stool alterations.

Yerba mate promotes weight loss, here’s how to use it

Some tea in some bags.
Chimarro or mate is a characteristic drink of the southern culture of South America, bequeathed by indigenous cultures. It’s made with ground yerba mate and hot water.

Now that you know what the benefits of yerba mate are, the next thing is to learn how to consume it. Here are a few options.

The traditional way

This is how it’s drunk in South America. You’ll need a mate (the gourd container which holds it) and a metal straw.

  • Put the raw yerba mate at the bottom of the container
  • Separately, heat the water (don’t let it boil)
  • Pour it into the container, over the yerba mate
  • Let it steep for a few minutes
  • Drink it in moderation

Yerba mate promotes weight loss when you drink it as an infusion

You can also make an infusion with the dried leaves or with yerba mate tea bags.


  • 1 c. of water (250 ml.)
  • 1 tbsp. of yerba mate (10 g.)


  • Firstly, heat the water until it boils
  • Then, pour it into a cup and add the yerba mate
  • Let it stand for a few minutes and strain it
  • Finally, drink it as hot as you can stand; you can add honey or stevia but it’s best to drink it as it is
Some yerba mate that helps the body.
Caffeine is present in many drinks such as coffee, tea and mate.

Cold mate

This is similar to green tea and people often carry it in a bottle to benefit from its health properties.


  • 4 c. of water
  • Ice cubes
  • The juice of 1 lemon
  • 4 tbsp. of yerba mate (40 g.)
  • Fresh peppermint or spearmint leaves (to taste)


  • Heat the water and, when it boils, remove from heat
  • Place in a jug, add the yerba mate and let it stand for a few minutes
  • Strain it and add the lemon juice
  • Add the mint leaves and ice cubes


  • You can use the yerba mate infusion as the liquid base on fruit or vegetable shakes or juices.
  • Do you prefer sweet flavors? Then, opt for papaya, bananas, and the like, since they’re naturally sweet. It’s a good way to sweeten without adding sugar or sweeteners.

So, do you know how you’re going to enjoy your yerba mate? be moderate in its consumption -always within a healthy lifestyle- to benefit from its health properties.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • Kim, S. Y., Oh, M. R., Kim, M. G., Chae, H. J., & Chae, S. W. (2015). Anti-obesity effects of Yerba Mate (Ilex Paraguariensis): A randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial. BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine.
  • Kang, Y.-R., Lee, H.-Y., Kim, J.-H., Moon, D.-I., Seo, M.-Y., Park, S.-H., … Oh, H.-G. (2012). Anti-obesity and anti-diabetic effects of Yerba Mate ( Ilex paraguariensis ) in C57BL/6J mice fed a high-fat diet. Laboratory Animal Research.
  • Pimentel, G. D., Lira, F. S., Rosa, J. C., Caris, A. V., Pinheiro, F., Ribeiro, E. B., … Oyama, L. M. (2013). Yerba mate extract (Ilex paraguariensis) attenuates both central and peripheral inflammatory effects of diet-induced obesity in rats. Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.