You might be thinking of replacing your morning coffee with a new drink. Maybe you’re looking for a healthier option. Or maybe you’re getting sick of the caffeine crash. Whatever your reason may be, you are craving an alternative. Does the drink ‘Yerba Mate’ ring a bell? It has been around for a while, but it is slowly becoming a popular replacement for coffee. Athletes and people alike love it. And there is a lot of debate about it. Yerba mate vs coffee. We’ll provide you with knowledge on yerba mate benefits as well as coffee while breaking down each side of the drinking cup to help you decide which one is better for you.
What is Yerba Mate?
Since you most likely know what coffee is, we’re going to cut to the herb first. Ilex paraguariensis, or Yerba Mate, is a mix of plants and herbs, native to South America. It grows wildly in countries like Brazil, Argentina and Chile, but the mate leaves are most often found in Uruguay. This tea has been used for hundreds of years for its medicinal and restorative properties. Because of these properties, it is referred to as “the drink of the gods” by South Americans. Drinking yerba is a social activity in South America, just like drinking coffee is at home and around the world. Also, mate it is the national drink of Argentina.
The process for making mate tea is the same as making a coffee. All you need to do is add the plants to some hot water and it’s ready to go. You can even make it with a French press or a tea ball infuser. So, with all of this in mind, you might be wondering how it tastes. It’s been described to have an earthy or grassy taste to it, which a lot of people might not like. However, many sellers add their own flavours to the herb such as mint or vanilla to make it taste a lot better. People choose this tea because of the yerba mate benefits.
Caffeine in Coffee vs. Yerba Mate
Both drinks have roughly the same amount of caffeine. This number is anywhere from 100mg-200mg of caffeine. These numbers can vary depending on the way you make each drink. For example, Yerba Mate in tea bags can have as little as 40mg of caffeine, which is almost the same as green tea. Though coffee and mate have the same amount of caffeine, the way it works in your nervous system when you drink the herb is different from coffee. Let’s get into the benefits of yerba mate and benefits of coffee so we can break this down further.
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Coffee Health Benefits vs. Yerba Mate Benefits
Coffee Health Benefits
Firstly, let’s talk about coffee. Since coffee is so popular, it has a lot more studies on it than mate does. Studies have found many benefits linked to drinking coffee. To start with the obvious, coffee can improve your brain and muscle function thanks to the caffeine in it. Even though the boost is only temporary, it is one of the best types of energy boosts you can get. It can also lower the risk of getting type II diabetes, as studies seem to show a strong correlation. Furthermore, coffee proves to protect the liver and prevent heart disease, but this depends on how much you drink per day. It can also protect against some cancers and reduce mortality. Now let’s switch over to the other side of the coin.
Yerba Mate Benefits
When looking at research, it seems that Yerba Mate has a huge list of things it can help with. But, there aren’t as many studies on this subject as there are on coffee. Nonetheless, this herb overall is much powerful than other super foods such as green tea.
The most known effect of this tea is that it induces a sense of well-being. Unlike coffee, yerba has a steady rise in energy which gives a feel of stimulation to the drinker’s minds and bodies.
That’s also why yerba mate doesn’t give you the jitters, unlike coffee. This effect occurs from a combination of caffeine and theobromine, which we’ll get into a bit later. Other than that, the herb can also reduce high blood pressure, cholesterol, colon cancer, type II diabetes and more. This is due to its 24 vitamins and minerals, its 15 amino acids and its large number of antioxidants.
The effect of yerba mate on metabolism is also important to mention. Studies show that when people take mate tea, there is an increase in thermogenesis in the body. This process simply creates heat in our bodies, which means we can burn extra calories. Also, one study showed that show that mate can slow down the release of stomach contents by 20 minutes. All of this means that this herb can help with weight loss while keeping us full for longer. From this information, we can see there are various health benefits of yerba mate. We can conclude it is much better for you in most cases, but coffee is better for an overall energy boost. How about the side effects?
Yerba Mate vs Coffee – Side Effects
To begin the debate between yerba mate vs coffee, we’ll start with yerba. Since the research on this topic is low, it can be hard to say for sure what the side effects are with long-term use. However, here are a few things we know. Firstly, one study published an article saying that there is an association between drinking mate with very hot water and having certain mouth or throat cancers. Though this isn’t fully proven, you should still be cautious about this. Also, if you are hypersensitive to caffeine, mate is not for you, as it has a high amount of caffeine in it. Other than that, there is not much information about the side effect of yerba mate. It is safe and it does not pose any kind of high risk to the drinker.
Though coffee has many health benefits, it also has many side effects that will make you think it is not healthy. The drink is very acidic, meaning it can irritate your digestive system and cause ulcers or heartburn. Frequent drinkers may also experience the jitters or a ‘burnt-out’ feeling throughout the day. Other side effects include interference with the absorption of minerals and also promotes stress. It does this by upping the levels of cortisol in your blood, which is the stress hormone. This can cause wear and tear on your body over time.
Which One is Better?
So there you have it, yerba mate vs coffee and yerba mate benefits. As you can see, both drinks have their good side and their bad side.
Yerba mate does, in fact, have more benefits to offer, but the amount of energy you can get from coffee is unmatchable.
So if you’re looking for an energy boost without the jitters, yerba mate is the choice for you. But if you thrive off the rush, perhaps coffee is your desired choice.
Also, remember that mate tea doesn’t have as much research on it as coffee does. This means there might be more to it that we haven’t figured out yet. Regardless, the decision of which one is better is up to you. Both are relatively safe to drink and both are good for getting the caffeine kick you need. If you’re looking to try out some yerba mate, check out our online store for some great blends.