Yerba mate is a perennial plant that is typically sold as loose tea and can be a healthy part of any diet. In addition to tasting great, this unique type of plant has a number of little-known health benefits.
An Effective Stimulant
While yerba mate is very healthy, it is generally advised that you don't consume too much of it in a short span of time. This is primarily because it contains a fast-acting caffeine-esque compound known as mateine. A single cup of yerba mate contains an amount of mateine that is nearly ten times greater than the amount of caffeine found in many coffee drinks. For this reason, yerba mate is popular with athletes and students prone to pulling all-nighters and is not recommended for women who are pregnant or nursing.
Good for the Immune System
Because of its high levels of vitamins C and E, yerba mate can help boost your immune system and fight off disease by supporting your body's white blood cells. As a result of its high saponin content, yerba mate may also be effective in supporting your body's other immune cells. So the next time you're fighting off a cold, try drinking yerba mate in lieu of traditional tea.
Although it's a powerful stimulant, yerba mate, unlike caffeine, is good for the heart. Studies show that it increases the amount of oxygen and nutrients supplied to the heart when you are exercising. In some cases, it has also been shown to relax blood vessels, thereby lowering blood pressure and improving circulation.
If you're looking for an energy boost or a good way to stimulate your immune system, look no further than yerba mate. Just remember to evenly space out servings and avoid consuming more than 1,500 milligrams in a 24-hour period.