Frequent coffee drinkers commonly complain of acid belly, bad breath, stained teeth, calorie rich creams & sweeteners, soaring caffeine highs & crashing lows. Most people simply grit and bear it because they need caffeine to get them through the day. They drag these issues around with them every day, thinking that there are no alternatives. When I tell people like this that a drink exists that has none of the negatives mentioned above YET it has a virtually equal amount of caffeine as coffee, they can hardly believe it. When I go on and explain the additional benefits Yerba Mate has over coffee most people’s next question is where can I find this stuff!?
Yerba Mate Health Benefits
- 24 vitamins & minerals
- 15 amino acids
- Contains ‘Theobromine’; the chemical found in chocolate notable for its stimulating & relaxing effects on the body.
- Packed with antioxidants; linked with improved health and mental clarity.
- 78 milligrams of caffeine per average 8-ounce cup of Yerba Mate.
- 0 calories
After I show people these stats common comments are: “why haven’t they heard of this before?” “That is some hippy stuff that no one actually uses.” Or my favorite, “o yea that yerba stuff, I heard of that but I can never find it.” What these people don’t know is that Yerba (erva, herba and other spellings also exist) Mate is an extremely common tea in South America. Tens of millions of people drink Yerba daily, hundreds of millions of people drink it weekly, and it has been around for over 500 years. Not just south Americans enjoy this beverage; this tea is also popular in select regions of north America and the middle east. Additionally, many celebrities are Yerba tea drinkers, and praise the benefits it gives them.
What always surprises me is when people don’t know where to find this tea. Yerba mate is widely available. The best place to buy it is online from a reputable company. You will find the largest variety online. There are many brands to choose from and each brand has its own special unique taste profile, you can find our recommendation for the 5 best yerba (or herva) mate brands here. Learn a bit more about chimarrao and try some Yerba for yourself!
Yerba Mate Vs. Coffee – Let’s discuss a few more of the health benefits:
Antioxidants: According to studies published in the Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety Yerba mate contains a higher number of beneficial antioxidants than any other beverage on the market. Antioxidants are known to have positive health effects and they provide you with good clean energy that your body can use throughout the day.
Vitamins & Minerals: There is a large number of vitamins and minerals found in this South American Tea. Yerba contains vitamins: A, B1, B2, B3, B5, C, E, Calcium, Iron, Manganese, Niacin Phosphorous, Sodium, Selenium, Sulfur and more. This wide range of vitamins rivals coffee’s nutritional composition.
Amino acids: Yerba also contains many amino acids. The most commonly mentioned amino acid in Mate is L-Theanine. L-Theanine has been found to increase levels of alertness and attentiveness. It has also been associated with increased states of mental arousal as well as increasing the brains production of alpha waves (which has a relaxing effect on the body). This curious mix of attentiveness and relaxation is what makes this amino acid famous and this tea quite popular worldwide.
Theobromine: When people think of chocolates relaxing effects what they are actually typically describing are the effects of Theobromine. This chemical naturally occurs in the cacao bean and therefore is always found in coffee; it also naturally occurs in the leaves of Yerba Mate. This compound lowers blood sugar, relaxes bronchi muscles and has other body relaxing effects. The presence of this chemical in Yerba Mate is likely why Mate drinkers frequently describe the effects of this drink as “energizing but non-jittery’.
Read this article, which goes into additional depth on these topics if you’d like more information and/or to see the sources used to write this article.
So when we compare Yerba Mate Vs Coffee, there is one easy winner. Mate’s mix of caffeine, vitamins, minerals, amino acids and antioxidants make it a far superior choice to coffee. If you can’t stomach the idea of totally leaving coffee behind, give this tea try. Substitute it in for your morning or afternoon cup of joe and see how it feels. Trust me you will enjoy it and your body and your mind will thank you.
Bonus tip: Try Mate Factor’s Yerba Mate Coffee; a unique loose-leaf Yerba Mate with added flavors which tries to imitate the taste of freshly brewed coffee.