Here is a great alternative to your daily cup of tea or coffee. All those who are health conscious or genuinely care about your health, stop right on your tracks and stop consuming tea or coffee. A cup of hot tea or hot coffee can usher in uninvited health issues if used on a daily basis. Why should you risk your health when you have a nutrient rich energizing substitute for tea or coffee? This write-up is a useful reference for you to understand the benefits of yerba mate tea in detail. Nowadays, even health websites like www.livestrong.com recommend intake of yerba mate as a healthy drink and substitute for the caffeine rich coffee or tea.
Yerba mate has a natural, grassy and earthy taste. When you drink it, you feel the same stimulating effect you feel when you drink a glass of coffee. Thus, it helps you stay active without actually drinking coffee. It is one of the best rejuvenating, energizing and invigorating drink. Hence, in South America, it can be found in even chocolates, energy drinks or power bars.
Tracing The Roots
Yerba mate is sourced from a plant named Ilex Paraguaraiensis. It belongs to the holly bush group of plants family and is relatively small in size than other large trees. It is the native of South America, within the gorgeously green Amazon rainforests. The tribes of Amazon, known as Ache Guayaki tribe is said to be consuming yerba mate since time immemorial. They are said to call this drink as the “drink of the Gods.” Since it has lots of medicinal values and energy boosting effects, the colonists now call the drink as “green gold.” This drink is slowly garnering attention and is now rated as the national drink of countries like South Brazil, Uruguay, Argentina, and Paraguay. In all these countries, they are consumed in a ratio of 6:1 when compared to coffee.
The growth of the yerba mate plant, its harvest and also processing in done in almost a similar way as of tea. The climate conditions under which it grows is also similar to tea. It usually grows in humid conditions of the rainforest. Just like tea is available in various grades, yerba mate is also available in different grades. In the beginning, yerba mate was grown in the form of small groups, in the shades of the natural canopy of the rainforest. But, it immediately got popular and more and more people demanded this rejuvenating drink. This lead to the production of yerba mate in large batches in cleared up fields under direct sun rays. Yerba mate grew up much faster when planted directly under the sunlight. This made the industrial processing also quicker.
The harvesting and processing of yerba mate are almost same as that of tea. The leaves and also stems of the plant is picked and is then flash heated. Flash heat process is done to preserve the nutrients. The stems are also added in addition to the leaves so that the product gets a slightly sweet taste naturally. It is then smoke dried at lower temperature conditions.