Yerba mate or coffee? Which is healthier?

Many of us rely on coffee to kickstart our mornings and keep up going throughout the day. However, if you're looking for a healthier alternative, you might want to consider yerba mate. In this article I will tell you about the benefits of drinking yerba mate instead of coffee.

Picture: Yerba Mate gets served in speacial metal cups and cans

Most likely you are a passioanate coffee drinker like me…

While coffee has a lot of advantages, you’ve probably also experienced the guilt of drinking too much coffee and that it is not the healthiest thing to do. Living in Paraguay, I’ve tried to drink yerba mate instead of coffee and here I will walk you through the positive changes it can have and how I experienced them.

This South American herbal tea has been gaining popularity worldwide, mainly because of the cultural aspect. But that there are really a lot of benefits to them is pretty unknown…

Picture: Yerba mate plants and leafs

Natural Energy Boost

Yerba mate contains caffeine, similar to coffee, but it also contains other stimulants like theobromine and theophylline. Together, these compounds provide a smooth and sustained energy boost without the jitters or crash often associated with coffee consumption. Because of that I gained a more balanced level of altertness throughout the day.

Not feeling guilty about drinking it

Unlike coffee, which is essentially free of any nutrients, yerba mate is packed with them. It contains the vitamins A, C, and E, minerals like potassium, magnesium, and manganese, but also antioxidants like polyphenols and flavonoids. These nutrients contribute to overall health and well-being, supporting immune function, improving cardiovascular health, and promoting healthy aging. If you drink coffee a lot, you probably also experienced the guilt of drinking one more cup than you planned, knowing that it’s not the healthiest thing to do. Well, knowing all of these benefits makes it even more attractive as an alternative to coffee.

Mental Clarity and Focus

The unique combination of caffeine and other compounds in yerba mate not only provides energy but also enhances mental clarity and focus. I felt more more alert, attentive, and productive after drinking yerba mate, which helped me to be more productive at work.

Social and Cultural Experience

Drinking yerba mate; or the cold version, tereré is more than just consuming a beverage. At least here in Paraguay. It’s a social and cultural experience deeply rooted in paraguayan tradition. Here you can see the famos tereré cans and cups everywhere. Sharing a gourd of mate with friends or colleagues fosters connection and truly refreshes you in the usual heat of 30-40° celsius. Paraguayans really love to share their culture with you and drinking tereré together really is a big part of it!

Picture: Drinking yerba mate is an important part of Paraguays and Argentinas culture

So yerba mate and tereré are interesting alternatives to coffee and you should definitely try it. You can get it in pretty much every South American and European country.

The diverse health benefits made it for me. It has a unique flavor and there are hundreds of combinations on how you can drink it. Whether you’re seeking a change of pace, exploring healthier beverage options, or simply curious about South American culture, trying yerba mate is your thing.

So, why not swap out your morning cup coffee for refreshing yerba mate?

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