Flavonoids in yerba mate tea have been shown to have cancer preventative qualities! The cancer prevention qualities are achieved by learning how to drink yerba mate with the special extraction techniques that flood your body with flavonoids, thus helping the body prevent cancer.
Yerba mate must be drunk at a safe temperature; otherwise the scolding heat can actually increase the risk of esophageal cancer.
Drinking any liquid (coffee, tea), even Yerba Mate, at very high temperatures and in large quantities over time may increase the risk of esophageal cancer. Unfortunately, a large number of Yerba Mate cultures drink it at too high of a temperature and over 5 times a day, taking more than just a few sips each time. In some Latin American cultures it is considered cool, or machismo, to drink the water at a very hot temperature. The American Association for Cancer Research notes that consumption in larger quantities and at very hot temperatures is "associated with an elevated risk of esophageal cancer"(2003).
For those drinking more than 1 liter/day at very hot temperatures: Subjects who self-reported drinking mate at a very hot temperature had an almost 2-fold increase in risk [odds ratio (OR), 1.87, 95% CI, 1.17-3.00] compared with those drinking warm to hot mate, after adjusting for cumulative consumption of mate. Mate amount and temperature were observed to have independent effects and, although no departure from multiplicativity was observed between the two covariates, those drinking more than 1 liter/day of mate at a very hot temperature had a 3-fold increase in risk (OR, 2.95, 95% CI, 1.30-6.74) compared with those drinking less than 0.5 liter/day of mate at a warm to hot temperature. Subjects with high cumulative exposure to mate in the presence of low alcohol and tobacco exposures presented a lower-risk estimate (OR, 1.52, 95% CI, 0.88-2.62), whereas those with high cumulative exposures to mate, alcohol, and tobacco presented a 7-fold increase in esophageal cancer risk (OR, 7.10, 95% CI, 3.75-13.46). The population-attributable fraction as a result of mate consumption was calculated to be 53%, of which the sole effect of amount and temperature was 14.8 and 12.6% respectively and 14.9% was attributable to high mate consumption at high temperature (2003). The evidence highlights the risk of using very hot water. Recall, the tea has many anti-oxidants that help to fight cancer, but is counterproductive to drink it at a very hot temperature.
The good news: Yerba mate, when consumed safely can help the body fight off cancer. This is because Yerba Mate has more flavonoids that green tea or black tea.
Lab results show that flavonoids/antioxidants in teas and herbs help to prevent cancer.
“Green and black tea have been found to have cancer preventive activity in a variety of animal models of cancer, including cancer of the skin, lung, mouth, esophagus, stomach, colon, pancreas, bladder and prostate (22, 23). White tea and green tea recently were shown to suppress intestinal polyps in mice (see Tea Complements Drugs in Fight Against Colon Cancer). In most cases, flavonoids appear to contribute substantially to the cancer preventing effects of tea".
Unfortunately, using a small tea bag of tea does not extract enough flavonoids to benefit the body. As noted by Oregon State University in 2005, the preparation of a small bag of tea does not appear to deliver enough antioxidants (26).
Fortunately, as Bixby’s 2005 lab results confirm, learning how to prepare yerba mate in a gourd, is the most effective way to extract the helpful flavonoids. The yerba mate gourd increases your ability to extract more flavonoids than any other method; “flavonoid rich beverages [Yerba Mate] could represent an alternative coadjuvant in treatment. In this regard, our studies suggest that Ilex paraguariensis extracts [Yerba Mate taken from a gourd] are more effective than either green tea or red wines.” (Bixby, Spieler, Menini, Gugliuccit, Life Sciences, 2005, #77 pgs. 345-358).
You have heard that green tea antioxidants have been shown to help prevent cancer, so if you want to flood your body with antioxidants, then your best resource is yerba mate!
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