Yerba Mate

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Yerba Mate  – The Drink of the Gods

By Ellen Easton and Reva Paul ©2007 – All Rights Reserved

 

Check out more of Ellen Easton’s Tea Travels™ articles and recipes.

Learn about the History of English High Tea and more delicious Afternoon Tea Recipes.


Yerba Mate – Is it a tea or is it an infusion?


Yerba Mate
An infusion is any plant, bark, flower, berry, herb, or spice steeped in hot water to extract the flavor.  
Tea is any blend of leaf coming from the camellia sinensis plant.

The answer is Yerba Mate can be both. Yerba Mate can be a tea provided that the Yerba Mate leaves are blended with tea leaves.


Yerba Mate(llex paraguariensis) 
is from the leaves of a small Evergreen tree indigenous to the subtropical Atlantic forests in the South American countries of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Paraguay and Uruguay.

Revered for centuries by the native peoples of the Guarani tribe for its medicinal qualities, of late scientists and consumers alike are rediscovering the wealth of health benefits associated with Yerba Mate.  The Pasteur Institute and the Paris Scientific Society, in 1964, concluded:  “It is difficult to find a plant in any area of the world equal to mate in nutritional value…containing practically all of the vitamins necessary to sustain life.”

 

While Yerba Mate’s chemical components share similarities with green tea, the Yerba Mate is more nutritious due to the twenty-four vitamins and minerals, fifteen amino acids, and eleven polyphenols.
Each infusion of Yerba Mate contains vitamins A, C, E, B1, B2, Niacin(B3), B5, and B complex, minerals calcium, manganese, iron, selenium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus and zinc.  Additional natural compounds include antioxidants carotene, fatty acids, chlorophyll, flavonols, polyphenols, inositol, saponins, trace minerals, tannins, and pantothenic acid.

 

Various studies have concluded that there are many health benefits, directly or indirectly, associated with the of drinking yerba mate.

To avoid complications or interactions of medications, before introducing anything new to your system always check with your doctor first.

Mental clarity, alertness and acuity without the negative side effects associated with caffeine and coffee.

Sustains Energy levels and reduces fatigue.

Boosts the immune system.

Alleviates Allergy symptoms.

Aids in weight control.

Diabetic treatment by inhibiting the formation of advanced glycation end products, AGEs.  It is thought that the formation of AGEs play a part in the development of diabetic complications.

Inhibits Lipid Peroxiadation- aids in lowering the bad cholesterol LDL, which helps to inhibit the onset of atherosclerosis, a thickening and hardening of the arteries.

Fights bad breath and aids in oral health.

 

As Yerba Mate can be an acquired taste, companies are now combining the leaves into wonderful blends.  Dan Garicia’s company AVIVA, takes great pride in providing only the purest leaves, no stems, of wild harvested organic Yerba Mate.  In addition to the natural Yerba Mate, Aviva’s delicious offerings include versions of Chai, Apricot Spice, Lemon Mint, Passion Berry and Ginger Orange.  For those who are adventurous enough to try Yerba Mate using the native Gourd and Bombilla, Dan will be happy to instruct you on this ancient tradition.

 

Other Uses:

If Yerba Mate is good for the inside of our body, it must be good for the outside of the body as well.

Kiehl’s, since 1851, has been the purveyor of fine apothecary creams and treatments for the body, bath and hair.  Always on the cutting edge of beauty care, Kiehl’s introduces an extraordinary new three step program of Yerba Mate tea formulated products for the skin.

Carefully developed for all skin types, the stream lined packaging insures that the products contain the highest quality natural ingredients.  The fragrance free, oil free moisturizer, cleanser and toner program will help to maintain a healthy-looking, radiant glow to skin tones of all ages.

As tea has always been a welcome sign of hospitality, so has Yerba Mate.  What could be better than the pairing of Yerba Mate and tea to enrich the traditions of community and health?

 


 

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Ellen Easton, author of Afternoon Tea~Tips, Terms and Traditions (RED WAGON PRESS), a lifestyle and etiquette industry leader, keynote speaker and product spokesperson, is a hospitality, design, and retail consultant whose clients have included The Waldorf=Astoria and Plaza Hotels.  Easton’s family traces their tea roots to the early 1800s, when ancestors first introduced tea plants from India and China to the Colony of Ceylon, thus building one of the largest and best cultivated teas estates on the island.


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