Tuesday, December 9, 2008

The Scoop on Yerba Mate

By popular demand (i.e. dozens of Facebook comments), I've decided to write about something unrelated to Italy or New York. It's called Yerba Mate, it hails from South America, and I've been unassumingly drinking it for the past couple of months, only to discover today that I've dropped 10lbs on the scale.

This is only the second time in my 26 years of existence that I can acknowledge losing weight WITHOUT a crash diet and hours at the gym. The first time was the summer of '07 when I first arrived in Italy and was active from morning till night.

But this time around I can largely attribute my success to this simple, earthy yet bitter tasting tea made from dried leaves and stems. It's so popular in Argentina that it's somewhat of a national beverage, and people are seen drinking it from traditional gourds all throughout the day . How Mate never made it into our weight-obsessed American culture is still a mystery...

I mean, when I think of our unofficial beverage, I sadly come up with Coca-Cola...and Italy's is obviously coffee. But neither of these pick-me-ups provide the jitter-less buzz I feel when I drink Mate. It gives me natural, prolonged energy, acute focus and CURBS MY APPETITE. Snacking doesn't even come to mind. I just eat three balanced meals and I'm set.

So now that I feel so fantastic, I want to give you even more fantastic news. MATE is dirt cheap. You can buy it on many Internet sites but GoYerbaMate is reliable and has good quality Mate. I prefer brewing the "La Merced"organic Mate in a french press, but if you're on the go you could try the Mate tea bags (I've never tried them but I can't imagine they'd be any different) or be traditional and use a gourd. Try to buy in bulk (it'll make a great holiday gift) to avoid wasting money on high shipping fees.

So that's the scoop on Mate. Let me know if you become as hooked as I am!

(This is not a paid endorsement)
[Photo: Boston.com]


Anonymous said...

Looking forward to try mate when I am going to spend a couple of months in Buenos Aires in the spring. Mate is also hugely popular in Syria where everybody drinks it in the streets of Aleppo and Damascus. How it ended up being so popular there I don't know.

Courtney said...

Hi David,

I'm envious of your upcoming trip to BA! It's so interesting to know that Syrians are drinking Mate. I wonder what other Arab countries have adopted the tradition?


Lauren (Lo) said...

OK....just brewed some Yerba mate in the french press. It tastes like hay...no? I tried the tea bags first which I really enjoy...acquired taste? Any tips or hints for french pressed?