Yerba mate is the drink of choice in Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay and some areas of Brazil and is increasingly reaching more countries around the world.
If you consume it without adding any sugar and without desserts, then it can help you lose weight. In this article, you’ll learn more about it does this.
Yerba mate and its properties
This bitter infusion of herbs consumed in South America has many advantages. Yerba mate leaves grow in mountainous zones or jungle areas. In addition, after being cut down these leaves are ground and dried.
Some people choose to sweeten the drink with sugar, honey or sweeteners. However, it’s said that “true mate” only contains herbs and hot water.
Mate is drunk with a metal straw out of a container (which has the same name as the herb). In summer can you can also drink it cold (for example, by adding orange juice to it).
There are many properties of yerba mate not to give it a try. Among the main ones we can highlight:
1. It’s stimulating
Thanks to these properties, mate can “trigger” the digestion process, which will help you lose weight more quickly. This is because it contains mateine, a chemical similar to caffeine.
In addition, it speeds up your metabolism and energy, so it burns more fat.
2. Mate is soothing
While mate shares properties with coffee, the truth is that drinking this herb relaxes and calms your emotions.
Why? Because it contains two substances called theobromine and theophylline (they are also present in the tea but in less quantity).
- It’s recommended to consume yerba mate after eating, to reduce cravings for certain foods and to reduce stress.
3. It’s satiating
Because you’re basically drinking water with herbs, mate fills your stomach with liquids and reduces your appetite.
However, you must bear in mind that it’s not a replacement for food because it doesn’t provide all the necessary nutrients.
- Yes, it can help you not to “attack” a pack of cookies or a tray full of baked goods in the middle of the morning, for example.
- Yerba mate delays the speed of gastric emptying and makes us feel satisfied after eating for longer.
4. Mate is an antioxidant
Because it contains a good amount of antioxidants yerba mate fights oxidative stress, improves skin health and eliminates free radicals in the body.
5. It’s anti-inflammatory
Drinking mate several times a week greatly reduces inflammation.
Thus, it’s recommended for those suffering from rheumatism, bronchitis, arthritis and other inflammatory diseases.
6. Mate is diuretic
Drinking mate is a good idea if you want to help your kidneys work better and stay healthy.
It’s also perfect to drink if you have fluid retention and is excellent to consume in winter when you drink less water.
More properties of yerba mate
This increasingly famous herb has other interesting benefits such as, for example, its ability to restrict the buildup of lactic acid in muscles.
This allows you to maintain high energy levels and increase fat burning.
Due to theophylline and theobromine mate also dilates the bronchi and facilitates the oxygenation of blood.
Contraindications of yerba mate
Moderate consumption of yerba mate reduces mental and physical fatigue.
You need to pay attention because if you drink too much, it can lead to insomnia, hyperactivity, and concentration problems due to its caffeine content.
On the other hand, mate can sit badly to the stomach because of its astringent properties and the tannins that it contains. Some people get heartburn and others have an increase in stools.
How to consume yerba mate to lose weight
Now that you know what the benefits of yerba mate are the next thing to do is to learn about how to consume this herb.
The options are:
The traditional way
This is how it’s drunk in South America. You’ll need a mate (the container which holds it) and a metal straw.
Heat the water until it boils and then add the yerba mate.
Drink it as a tea
If you do not have the patience to fill the mate every time what you can do is prepare a tea like you do with any other herb.
You can even get the herb in small packets. Otherwise, you can make the infusion the old fashioned way.
- 1 tablespoon of yerba mate (10 g)
- 1 cup of water (250 ml)
- 2 teaspoons of sugar (10 g) (optional)
- Heat the water until it boils.
- Pour it in a cup and add the yerba mate.
- Leave it to stand for a few minutes and filter it.
- Sweeten (you can also use honey or stevia) and consume it as hot as possible.
This is similar to the tea about but is of greater quantity. It can be carried in a bottle once it has cooled down so that you can take advantage of similar benefits as green tea.
- 4 tablespoons of yerba mate (40 g)
- 4 cups of water (1 liter)
- The juice of 1 lemon
- Fresh mint leaves or mint (to taste)
- Ice cubes
- Heat the water and, when it boils, remove it from the heat.
- Place in a jug, add the yerba mate and leave the concoction for a few minutes.
- Strain it and add the lemon juice.
- Add mint leaves and ice cubes.
Shakes or smoothies
The infusion of yerba mate can be used as a liquid base to mix with any fruits or vegetables of your choice.