What is Yerba Mate Leaf Extract? – Dosage and Facts

Yerba mate tea is a herbal infusion that provides many health benefits and is becoming more popular all over the world. Compared to mate tea, yerba mate extracts have a higher concentration of beneficial compounds and are more convenient to use. I know there are many people who are interested in this herbal supplement, so I wrote an article to explain what is yerba mate leaf extract and how to use it. I will also tell you about its health benefits, where to buy it, and what are the best products available.

Mate tea is brewed from the leaves of Ilex paraguariensis, an evergreen tree that grows naturally in certain parts of South America. This energizing beverage has been consumed by humans for thousands of years, and it has been used as a remedy for many conditions. Its numerous health benefits have been later confirmed by scientific research. Yerba mate leaf extract is a supplement that enables us to enjoy these benefits without brewing the tea.

Yerba mate extract is available as tablets, capsules, powder, and liquid form. All of these different forms have their own advantages. Later in this article, I will introduce the best products from each type of extract so that you can choose the one that you prefer, and buy the best possible product for your needs.

Yerba mate powder
Yerba mate powder

What is Yerba Mate Leaf Extract

Yerba mate extract is a product where the beneficial compounds of yerba mate leaves have been extracted and therefore, are in a more concentrated form. This chapter will explain how the extracts are produced, what affects their quality, and what health benefits and potential risks are involved in using them.

Extraction Methods and Production

There are many different ways to make a yerba mate extract. The technique used plays a big part in the strength and composition of the product.

Here are the most common extraction methods:

  • Supercritical carbon dioxide extraction is the most common extraction method used for commercial products. This method produces an extract with a high concentration of beneficial compounds such as antioxidants, caffeine, and theobromine.
  • Ethanol extraction is a common method for making liquid yerba mate extracts. Ethanol alcohol is an efficient solvent that also helps with preserving the beneficial compounds for a longer time.
  • Aqueous extracts are prepared in a similar way to brewing yerba mate tea. Hot water and loose-leaf yerba mate are mixed, and after a short time, the liquid is filtered and collected. The strength of the extract depends mainly on the proportion of yerba mate and water. The extract can be made stronger by evaporating water so that the remaining liquid becomes stronger.
  • Compressed propane extraction is a method that provides an extract with high phytol and squalene concentrations. This method is not commonly used for ingestible yerba mate extracts.

Even a technique of exposing yerba mate leaves to certain types of sonic waves can be used for extracting the compounds, but it is not a commonly used method.

After producing the extract it might be mixed with other ingredients in order to make it more stable and for easier ingestion and storage. For example, when producing tablets or capsules the extract is often mixed with components such as gelatin, stearic acid, or cellulose gum.

Yerba mate tree branch
A branch of yerba mate tree

Quality

In addition to the extraction method, the quality of the yerba mate leaves used is the main factor affecting the quality of the extract. There are several factors that affect the quality of the leaves:

  • Cultivation method: How the yerba mate plants are cultivated, has a big impact on the quality of the leaves. The plants should be grown in shade, instead of direct sunlight, to achieve better quality. Also the amount and quality of fertilizers is an important factor.
  • Age of the leaves: Younger leaves tend to have a higher concentration of beneficial compounds.
  • Drying method: Leaves dried in the dark (or low light) have a higher caffeine content compared to leaves dried in lighted areas.
  • Wild or farmed: Most products are extracted from farmed yerba mate leaves. However, there are also products that are made from leaves harvested from wild plants.
  • Country and area of origin: Different countries in South America tend to produce yerba mate leaves that vary in qualities such as polyphenol and antioxidant content. A study from 2016 found that extracts made from leaves grown in Uruguay had the highest antioxidant content, followed by Argentina, and Brazil.

Health Benefits

Yerba mate has many health benefits that have been backed up by scientific research. It is rich in antioxidants, helps with improving cholesterol levels, stimulates the immune system, and aids with indigestion and other stomach problems.

The extracts made from this plant are rich in beneficial compounds such as saponins, polyphenols, and caffeoyl derivatives. It also contains stimulants (caffeine, theobromine, theophylline) that have an energizing effect and help with burning fat and losing weight. Yerba mate can also boost mental focus and cognitive ability.

You can read more about the health benefits of yerba mate in this article.

Here is a short video related to the antioxidants found in yerba mate:

Dosage

You should always start with a low dosage and see how your body reacts. You should be especially careful if you are not used to consuming yerba mate tea or coffee because you don’t know how the caffeine will make you feel. Be especially careful if you are sensitive to caffeine. Do not exceed the recommended dosage of the product, and do not combine its use with other caffeinated supplements. Later in this article, I will discuss the dosage of each introduced product separately.

Risks

Some sources claim that taking high doses of yerba mate extract can increase the risk of cancer. This depends on how the leaves used for making the extract have been dried. If they have been dried with fire and smoke, they could contain a small amount of carcinogens. In my opinion, the risk of cancer is very minimal. However, the recommended dosage should not be exceeded because the high caffeine content of the extract can cause an unpleasant feeling and palpitation.

Read more about the possible side effects of yerba mate in this article.

Yerba Mate Tablets and Capsules

Yerba mate tablets and capsules are a convenient way of enjoying the benefits of yerba mate plant. They are easy to store, carry around and to use when needed. When ingesting them, all you need is a glass of water to wash the tablet or capsule down. Also, you don’t get to taste anything, as the product will go directly into your stomach and dissolve there.

Source Naturals Yerba Mate TabletsYerba mate extract tablets

Source Naturals Yerba Mate Tablets contain 600mg of yerba mate leaf extract per tablet. This can be compared to drinking approximately one cup of yerba mate tea. This is a high-quality standardized extract that is GMO-free and contains no preservatives, or artificial colors, flavors or fragrance. Take one tablet at a time, up to 4 times a day.

I recommend this product to anyone who is looking for a powerful yerba mate extract that is easy to use!

BodSmith Yerba Mate CapsulesYerba mate capsules

These premium quality yerba mate capsules are GMP certified and contain 900mg of yerba mate leaf powder per each capsule. The recommended dosage is up to 2 capsules per day. The great thing about these capsules is that they are almost pure yerba mate powder. There is only a minor amount of two additional components, gelatin, and rice powder, which are very natural ingredients that are easy on the stomach.

Liquid Yerba Mate Extract

Liquid extracts offer several benefits over the other types of extracts. Up to 98% of the liquid extract is absorbed into your body, while the amount of absorption with tablets and capsules is significantly lower. The liquid extract is in a form that is fast and easy for your system to use, because there is no need to break it down first, unlike with a supplement that is in solid form.

With a liquid extract, you also get to taste the product in your mouth. This could be an advantage or disadvantage depending on your preference.

Hawaii Pharm Organic Yerba Mate Liquid ExtractLiquid yerba mate extract

Hawaii Pharm Yerba Mate Liquid Extract is a strong alcohol-based product that is made with completely natural ingredients. The recommended dosage is 1 ml (20-30 drops) which means there are about 120 servings in the bottle. 1 ml of the liquid is equal to approximately 300 mg of dried yerba mate leaf. However, note that the absorption of the liquid is much faster and more efficient compared to dried leaf.

There is also an alcohol-free version available, but I recommend this one, as the alcohol-based extract seems to be more effective than glycerine-based products.

Yerba Mate Powder

Yerba mate extract in a powder form is a good option if you don’t want anything to be mixed with the extract. The powder extracts are often pure yerba mate with nothing added. With the powder, you have to measure it and then mix it with a liquid before consuming it. You also get the taste of the herb in your mouth when drinking it.

Terravita Yerba Mate Extract PowderYerba mate extract powder

Terravita Yerba Mate Extract Powder is a 4:1 strength extract meaning 4 grams of dried yerba mate leaves are used to make 1 gram of the extract. You can start by mixing a small amount (1/4 teaspoon) of the extract with water or other liquid. You can increase the amount later according to your preference.

Yerba Mate Extracts

I like drinking yerba mate because it tastes good, gives a nice energy boost, and provides many health benefits. I really feel like it helps with focusing on my work and being more effective. It also enhances my performance with physical activities such as surfing, running, and gym exercises.

With yerba mate extract you can get all these benefits without having to brew and drink the tea. It is a very useful herbal supplement for losing weight, controlling appetite, and burning fat. It also contains antioxidants, minerals, and other beneficial compounds.

After reading this article you have all the necessary information about different types of yerba mate extracts, and how to use them. Now you can choose a product that best suits your needs.

If you have any questions or comments related to yerba mate extract, please post them below.

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10 thoughts on “What is Yerba Mate Leaf Extract? – Dosage and Facts”

  1. There are so many herbal products that I’ve never even heard about! I’m glad I came across this article. I’m also a bit of a skeptic, so I really like that the benefits of the yerba mate leaf extracts were confirmed by science, as you have mentioned. I’m mostly interested in the antioxidants that it contains, as well as how it helps digestion and stomach. This might be something good for me!

    Reply
    • Thanks for your comment James! The use of herbal remedies is often based on tradition and they truly have powerful healing powers. Yerba mate is one of the healthiest herbs available and it’s great that now it’s benefits have been proven by research. I recommend that you try yerba mate tea or extract, and experience these benefits for yourself!

      Regards,
      Joonas

      Reply
    • Hi Jessie!

      Yerba mate contains more antioxidants and beneficial compounds compared to coffee. When coffee is roasted, many of the beneficial compounds are destroyed.

      However, I have to say that a nice cup of coffee tastes great, and it’s not bad for health if you don’t drink too much of it. But still, after replacing most of my coffee drinking with yerba mate tea, I feel much better. One big difference is that yerba mate is much better for your stomach, and it makes a big difference!

      -Joonas

      Reply
  2. I have actually been wondering what all the hype is about yerba mate. Now I know! And thanks to you for breaking down the extraction methods and quality. Sometimes when these natural remedies pick up popularity, the integrity of the product goes down just so someone can make money. Thanks for adding good quality products here so I don’t have to go and research on my own!

    Reply
    • Thanks for commenting Ashley! My goal was to write an article with all the necessary information about yerba mate extracts.

      As you said, there are also bad products out there. It is important to buy high-quality products but it takes some time to research different options.

      -Joonas

      Reply
  3. Great article on Yerba Mate Joonas. It’s really amazing how many wonderful medicinal plants are naturally available. I’ve used Yerba Mate before and I agree with you it does provide extra energy because of its caffeine, antioxidant, and polyphenol benefits. Thanks for sharing.

    Reply

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