What Is Yerba Mate Tea Good For?

Medically Reviewed on 8/30/2021
properties of yerba mate
Research shows that the benefits of yerba mate tea may include several antimicrobial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory effects in addition to the other health benefits.

Yerba mate, also called mate, is a herbal tea made from the leaves of the yerba mate plant. Numerous studies have shown that yerba mate is one of the world's most nutritious plants. The tea contains various vitamins, minerals, amino acids, a variety of antioxidants and polyphenols. It also contains caffeine that acts as a stimulant.

According to research, yerba mate tea has many health benefits. Sufficient scientific evidence, however, is lacking. The proposed health benefits of this tea include several antimicrobial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory effects apart from other health benefits.

Lowers bad cholesterol

  • Yerba mate tea was shown in studies to reduce low-density lipoprotein (LDL) or bad cholesterol in people with high cholesterol levels.
  • Researchers discovered that those who drank yerba mate regularly reduced their LDL cholesterol levels by approximately 10 percent.

Immune booster

  • Phytochemicals present in yerba mate may stimulate the body's immune system by reducing chronic inflammation and aiding in disease prevention.
  • Because it contains so many antioxidants and phytochemicals, yerba mate is regarded as a good immune-boosting beverage.

Anticancer abilities

  • Yerba mate has been shown to have cancer-fighting properties in numerous tests.
  • According to a 2011 study from the University of Illinois, when cancer cells were exposed to yerba mate-derived chemicals, they experienced cell death (apoptosis).
  • Researchers discovered that the caffeine in yerba mate boosts its anti-cancer properties.
  • The anticancer effect, however, is not documented in humans.

Aids in weight loss

  • Weight loss is one of the benefits of consuming yerba mate tea, however, proper diet and exercise are still essential.
  • Drinking this herbal tea before exercise can even enhance fat burning and calorie expenditure throughout the activity, according to a 2014 study published in Nutrition & Metabolism.

Slows down aging

  • Yerba mate is rich in antioxidants, which are incredibly valuable substances that may slow down the aging process.
  • Because it contains caffeine, it can make people feel less tired and may even boost their physical performance.


  • Yerba mate can increase alertness and improve mental focus, since it includes stimulants, theobromine (the euphoria-inducing chemical found in chocolate) and theophylline, besides caffeine.
  • As a result, yerba mate provides a natural energy boost without generating the jitters that coffee does.
  • Because of its caffeine concentration, yerba mate has become a popular ingredient in health-conscious energy beverages.

Good for the skin

  • The antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties can benefit the skin by decreasing stress and skin redness.
  • Yerba mate has also been proven in studies to inhibit the growth of the fungus Malassezia furfur, which can cause several ailments, such as dry skin, dandruff and rashes.


  • Xanthine in yerba mate can induce smooth muscle relaxation, which can be beneficial for digestion, especially if you suffer from constipation, bloating, cramping or other digestive disorders.

Controls blood sugar

Good for the heart

The herb does claim a variety of health benefits. However, some of these claims require larger human trials for confirmation, although the data so far is favorable.

Are there any side effects of yerba mate tea?

Some of the possible side effects of yerba mate are:

  • One of the stated outcomes was that consuming more than one liter of boiling mate tea each day triples the risk of esophageal cancer.
  • Because yerba mate has a high concentration of caffeine, some people may experience caffeine sensitivity. Caffeine overdose symptoms include anxiety, dizziness and lightheadedness.
  • Consuming yerba mate in excess for long periods may cause cancer of the mouth, throat or lungs.

Who should avoid yerba mate tea?

Yerba mate tea is generally deemed safe. However, some people may need to avoid it because there is no scientific proof to back these claims.

  • If you are pregnant or breastfeeding, you should avoid drinking yerba mate tea.
  • If you suffer from anxiety or are sensitive to caffeine, avoid drinking this herbal tea.
  • It is not recommended to combine yerba tea with medications for heart disease, asthma or depression.
  • If you are already using stimulants, you should avoid this tea.

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

Medically Reviewed on 8/30/2021
WebMD. Are There Health Benefits to Drinking Yerba Mate? https://www.webmd.com/diet/health-benefits-yerba-mate#1

Lutomski P, Gozdziewska M, Florek-Luszczki M. Health properties of Yerba Mate. Ann Agric Environ Med. 2020 Jun 19;27(2):310-313. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32588612/

St. Clair Health. Yerba Mate: Is It Safe to Drink? https://www.stclair.org/services/mayo-clinic-health-information/faqs/FAQ-20058343/