Mate Information (Yerba Mate)

Page summary: Details of the Mate herb for medicinal purposes. The role that Mate plays in holistic and alternative medicine. Characteristics of Mate alternative remedies from Mate uses and properties to Mate constituents and preparations. Mate origin and warnings or contraindications that we are aware of. Mate products for sale as well as appropriate books.

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Most Common Name: Mate, Yerba Mate (the drink)
Botanical Name:Ilex Paraguayensis
Also Known As (other names):Paraguay herb, Ilex Mate, Yerba Mate, Jesuit's Tea, Brazil Tea.

Mate description and origin:

Although this rather large shrub grows wild near streams in Argentina, Paraguay and Brazil, most of the dried Mate available commercially is cultivated in plantations throughout South America.

Mate Yerba, an infusion of the leaves, is a very popular drink (more popular than tea or coffee) in South America where it is drunk with every meal and frequently through the day. Very little of the total production of dried Mate leaves ever leave South America where vast quantities are consumed every day.

Mate Yerba taste is bitter and astringent and the aroma, although very aromatic, is not very pleasant but one soon gets used to it.

Mate Use for/In treatment of:

Fatigue Depression Rheumatism

Mate Properties:

Tonic Diuretic Stimulant
Diaphoretic Analgesic Antioxidant

Mate Constituents (Mate Ingredients):

Below we list reported constituents of Mate. This may not be complete as continuous research constantly discovers new constituents.


Caffeine: Caffeine is a mentholated xanthine.

Caffeine is a very effective central nervous system stimulant, overcoming fatigue and sleepiness as well as increasing alertness. Prolonged use can lead to chronic insomnia and overdose will cause insomnia, agitation and tremours.

Caffeine also increases the heart rate and raises metabolism as well as raising blood pressure. Caffeine is sometimes effective against migraines.

Caffeine is habit forming and in addicts withdrawal can cause severe headaches.

Caffeic Acid: A Phenylpropanoid found in many plants with a bigger concentration in coffee beans. Caffeic Acid is analgesic and anti-inflammatory.

Phenylpropanoids: A phenol.

Phenylpropanoids are therapeutically beneficial and generally not toxic.

Most Phenylpropanoids are analgesic, anti-inflammatory and hypotensive

Phenol: Phenol is extracted from coal tar.
Phenol has an anesthetic and disinfectant effect on the skin but is very toxic and must not be ingested. even in very small quantities phenol may cause nausea, vomiting, paralysis, convulsions and respiratory failure.

Fatalities from skin absorption has been reported as well as circulatory collapse. This product should not be used under any circumstances.

Triterpenoid Saponins: A glycoside with triterpenoid aglycone structures.

Saponins: Wound healing, anti-scarring. Saponins occur as glycosides with aglycone structures that are steroidal or terpenoid. Saponins can cause the destruction of red blood cells if injected causing anaemia or worse. Ingested saponins are poorly absorbed in the digestive system reducing the risk of poisoning but care must be taken on dosage as Saponins are mucus membrane irritants.

Many herbs containing saponins have been identified as "adaptogens" also referred to as harmony remedies (see: The Root of being: Ginseng and the Pharmacology of Harmony - Stephen Fulder 1980). Instead of being purely remedial herbs these adaptogens improves and energizes vitality and resistance thereby keeping ailments at bay. It is claimed that these adaptogens can improve mental functions like learning speed, awareness and alertness as well as help with emotional and intellectual stress. As a tonic they will also reduce the risk of infections by stimulating the immune system.

Saponins are also expectorant, anti-inflammatory, hepaprotective, combats cholesterol build up and antifungal.

Tannins: Tannins are the largest group of polyphenols found widely in bark, wood, leaves and even some fruit. Widely used to tan animal hides in the leather production industry this constituent is an Astringent, works against inflammation in mucus membranes and other skin conditions, prevents bleeding of small wounds as well as uterine bleeding and is effective against diarrhoea and dysentery.

Tannins should be used with care as they tend to inhibit the absorption of other nutrients and substances therefore reducing the efficacy of other medicinal compounds in the medication.

Buy Mate products:


Mate Contraindications, do not use if:

Throat cancer has been linked to high and prolonged consumption of Mate YerbaLarge doses can induce vomiting and act as a purgative. 
We cannot warrant that this list of contraindications are complete or valid. We urge that you consult an appropriate and knowledgeable practitioner before treatment.

Mate is Administered as/Available in:

infusiondried leavespowder

What is?

A CompressA DecoctionA Herbal VinegarA Fluid Extract
An InfusionAn OintmentA PoulticeA Powder
A SalveA SyrupA TeaA Tincture

Recommended Reading:

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* Statements made have not been evaluated by American Food and Drug Authority or similar board or authority of any other country.
The content of this website, products offered on the website and any correspondence that we may enter into with you have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Authority. The information and products offered on this website and any website or publication that we may refer to or link to are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, prevent or in any way improve or ease any conditions, disease or symptoms. The content of the website, products and documentation provided is for your entertainment and enlightenment only. None of the content of this website, packaging and documentation provided with products offered on this website or any correspondence entered into is intended or should be construed as a substitute or augmentation of advice from your physician or medical practitioner. You should not use any information provided by us in any form to diagnose or treat any condition or disease. You must consult your healthcare practitioner or doctor before commencing any dietary change, taking or ceasing to take any medication, starting or stopping a treatment of any suspected or diagnosed medical condition or self improvement plan.


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