There are 2 items that Yerba Mate drinkers traditionally use to best maximize the benefits of yerba mate tea:
The special shape of the mate cup compresses the yerba mate tea around the bombilla, allowing the maximum extraction of the helpful nutrients. Ultimately the yerba mate gourd and bombilla allow the compressed yerba mate's benefits to be time released throughout the day. The yerba mate gourd and bombilla are fundamental, time-proven tools, which have benefited yerba mate drinking cultures for centuries.
The mate cup performs two important tasks:
As the yerba mate expands in the mate cup, it uses the shape of the mate cup to compress the yeba mate tea around the mate straw. The compression serves three functions:
The mate cup reduces the bitterness of the yerba mate tea and adds back any flavors it may have absorbed from previous uses. People often refer to this as the "memory" of the gourd, which continues to mature over time and helps one feel connected with their gourds. So, for example, if you drink yerba mate with honey, the mate cup will add a sweet flavor evertime you use it to drink yerba mate.Yet, there are an infinite number of ways to live, and an equally infinite number of ways to drink Yerba Mate. We prefer the above mentioned traditional way to drink yerba mate used in Yerba Mate drinking countries, both for the unmatched nutrient extraction that produces the benefits of yerba mate, as well as the joy one experiences in this unique drinking method.
Still, our love for Yerba Mate is so great that we can appreciate all the different, creative ways that people choose to drink yerba mate in order to connect with this soul awakening plant. We invite you to explore the traditional method and other methods.
You have heard that there are health benefits to teas and herbs, but yerba mate is unique in that it actually delivers the health benefits to you because of the extraction method used with the traditional method of preparing yerba mate.
Jane Higdon, Ph.D., Oregon State University, writes that it may be difficult to drink enough of other teas "to reach sufficient plasma and tissue levels of tea polyphenols to realize a protective effect."
When you drink yerba mate with the the mate cup and mate straw, then you can truely extract the benefits. The American Chemical Society supports this claim by noting that the "direct measurements in people's blood" when using a tea without the yerba mate gourd and mate straw are "typically less than one-tenth" the amount shown to produce any significant result (2003). Fortunately, when you drink yerba mate with the mate cup and bombilla, it increases your ability to gain its many benefits. Laboratory tests confirm that drinking mate with the yerba mate gourd and bombilla appears to be the only way to receive health benefits that the other herbs fail to deliver (Bixby, 2005, c.v. Palermo, 2003).
Those who seek the benefits of Yerba Mate will usually consume it throughout the day. The Traditional Latin American method was described in 1889 by the cultural enthusiast Frank Vincent, "Mate is taken the first thing in the morning, and again, about the middle of the afternoon, regularly. Then, besides, whenever you call upon a person, at anytime of day or evening, mate is generally served as a delicate attention, whether your visit is of business or friendship." (Around and About South America, Twenty Months of Quest and Query). To maximize the health benefits of herbs or teas, it is best to drink it throughout the day. According to the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, "…doing so throughout the day may be the most beneficial because you get a constant supply of antioxidants…", and that "studies touting the success of green tea report that subjects drank between three and six cups of tea daily." (2005). The Harvard Medical School concurs that the best method is to have "a cup of tea a few times a day to absorb antioxidants and other healthful plant compounds." (2005). Not surprisingly it is alsoan ancient principle to drink herbs often and throughout the day. Both ancient Ayurvedic and Chinese principles, notes Dharmananda, Ph.D., Director, Institute for Traditional Medicine in Portland Oregon, extol the benefits of drinking small amount of fluids often throughout the day. (Dharmananda, 2005) Over 90% of Argentinians drink Yerba Mate every day, throughout the day.