Tag Archives: Yerba maté

Ilex Paraguayensis

Botanical Name ; Ilex Paraguayensis
Family: Aquifoliaceae
Genus: Ilex
Species: I. paraguariensis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Aquifoliales

Synonyms: Paraguay Herb. Paraguay. Maté. Ilex Maté. Yerba Maté. Houx Maté. Jesuit’s Tea. Brazil Tea. Gón gouha.

Common Names : Paraguay Tea

Habitat:  Ilex Paraguayensis is native to  Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay.

Edible Uses: It is well known as the source of the beverage called mate, Chimarrão, Tererê (or Tereré) and other variations, traditionally consumed in subtropical South America, particularly northeastern Argentina, Bolivia, southern Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay.

Description:
Yerba mate, Ilex paraguariensis, begins as a shrub and then matures to a tree and can grow up to 15 metres (49 ft) tall. The leaves are evergreen, 7–11 cm long and 3–5.5 cm wide, with a serrated margin. The leaves are often called yerba (Spanish) or erva (Portuguese), both of which mean “herb”. They contain caffeine (known in some parts of the world as mateine) and also contains related xanthine alkaloids and are harvested commercially.

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The flowers are small, greenish-white, with four petals. The fruit is a red drupe 4–6 mm in diameter.

It was first used and cultivated by the Guaraní people and in some Tupí communities in southern Brazil, prior to the European colonization. It was scientifically classified by the Swiss botanist Moses Bertoni, who settled in Paraguay in 1895

Cultivation:
The Yerba mate plant is grown and processed in South America, specifically in northern Argentina (Corrientes, Misiones), Paraguay, Uruguay and southern Brazil (Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, Paraná and Mato Grosso do Sul). Cultivators are known as yerbateros (Spanish) or ervateiros (Brazilian Portuguese).

Seeds used to germinate new plants are harvested from January until April only after they have turned dark purple. After harvest, they are submerged in water in order to eliminate floating non-viable seeds and detritus like twigs, leaves, etc. New plants are started between March and May. For plants established in pots, transplanting takes place April through September. Plants with bare roots are transplanted only during the months of June and July.

Medicinal Uses:
Part Used: Leaves.
Constituents:  Fresh leaves dried at Cambridge were found to contain caffeine, tannin, ash and insoluble matter.

Tonic, diuretic, diaphoretic, and powerfully stimulant. In large doses it causes purging and even vomiting.

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://www.botanical.com/botanical/mgmh/p/partea05.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ilex_paraguarie

Yerba Mate

Botanical Name :Ilex paraguariensis
Family: Aquifoliaceae
Genus: Ilex
Species: I. paraguariensis
Kingdom: Plantae
Order: Aquifoliales

Synonyms: I. paraguensis, I. mate, I. domestica, I. sorbilis

Common Names: Yerba Mate , maté, erva mate, congonha, erveira, Paraguay cayi, Paraguay tea, South American holly, matéteestrauch, erva-verdadeira, St. Bartholomew’s tea, Jesuit’s tea, hervea, caminú, kkiro, kali chaye

Habitat :  Yerba Mate is native to subtropical South America in northeastern Argentina, Bolivia, southern Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay. It was first used and cultivated by the Guaraní people, and also in some Tupí communities in southern Brazil, prior to the European colonization. It was scientifically classified by the Swiss botanist Moses Bertoni, who settled in Paraguay in 1895.

Description:
Yerba mate is a widely-cultivated, medium-sized evergreen tree that can grow to 20 m high in the wild. Commonly, when cultivated, it is pruned into a shrubby, 4-8 m tall tree to make harvesting easier. Yerba mate is in the holly family, and bears holly-like leaves that are quite stiff and leathery. In the wild it grows near streams, and thrives at 1,500-2,000 feet above sea level. It has graceful, full-leafed branches, and white flowers that produce small red, black, or yellow berries. It is yerba mate’s tough, leathery leaves that are used medicinally and as a natural, refreshing tea beverage throughout South America. Yerba mate is indigenous to Paraguay, Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay; however, it is now cultivated in many tropical countries to supply a world demand for its leaves.

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The flowers are small, greenish-white, with four petals. The fruit is a red drupe 4–6 mm in diameter.

It is the well known as the source of the beverage called mate after the gourd it is traditionally drunk from. It is native to subtropical South America in northeastern Argentina, Bolivia, southern Brazil, Uruguay and Paraguay. It was first used and cultivated by the Guaraní people, and also in some Tupí communities in southern Brazil, prior to the European colonization. It was scientifically classified by the Swiss botanist Moses Bertoni, who settled in Paraguay in 1895.

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Cultivation:
The plant is grown and processed in South America, specifically in northern Argentina (Corrientes, Misiones), Paraguay, Uruguay and southern Brazil (Rio Grande do Sul, Santa Catarina, Paraná and Mato Grosso do Sul). Cultivators are known as yerbateros (Spanish) or ervamateiros (Brazilian Portuguese).

Seeds used to germinate new plants are harvested from the second half of January until April only after they have turned dark purple. After harvest, they are submerged in water in order to eliminate floating non-viable seeds and detritus like twigs, leaves, etc. New plants are started between March and May. For plants established in pots, transplanting takes place April through September; for plants with bare roots, it is better to transplant only during the months of June and July.

Many of the natural enemies of Yerba Mate are difficult to control in a plantation setting. Some of these are insects including Gyropsylla spegazziniana, an insect that lays eggs in branches, Hedyphates betulinus, an insect that weakens the tree and makes it more susceptible to mold and mildew, “Perigonia lusca”, an insect that eats the leaves, and several species of mites.

When the mate is harvested, the branches are dried sometimes with a wood fire, imparting a smoky flavor. Then the leaves and sometimes the twigs are broken up.

The plant Ilex paraguariensis can vary in strength of the flavor, caffeine levels and other nutrients depending on whether it is a male or female plant. Female plants tend to be milder in flavor, and lower in caffeine. They are also relatively scarce in the areas where mate is planted and cultivated, not wild-harvested, compared to the male plants.

According to FAO, Brazil is the biggest producer of mate in the world with 434,727 MT (53%), followed by Argentina with 300,000 MT (37%) and Paraguay with 76,663 MT (10%).

Chemical Constituents:
Xanthines:
Mate contains three xanthines: caffeine, theobromine and theophylline, the main one being caffeine. Caffeine content varies between 0.7% and 1.7% of dry weight (compared with 0.4– 9.3% for tea leaves, 2.5–7.6% in guarana, and up to 3.2% for ground coffee); theobromine content varies from 0.3% to 0.9%; theophylline is present in small quantities, or can be completely absent. A substance previously called “mateine” is a synonym for caffeine (like theine and guaranine)

Preliminary limited studies of mate have shown that the mate xanthine cocktail is different from other plants containing caffeine, most significantly in its effects on muscle tissue, as opposed to those on the central nervous system, which are similar to those of other natural stimulants.[citation needed] The three xanthines present in mate have been shown to have a relaxing effect on smooth muscle tissue, and a stimulating effect on myocardial (heart) tissue

Mineral content: Mate also contains elements such as potassium, magnesium and manganese.

Meditional Uses:
Main Preparation Method: infusion
Main Actions (in order):
stimulant, tonic (tones, balances, strengthens overall body functions), thermogenic (increase fat-burning), nervine (balances/calms nerves), anti-allergy

Main Uses:
1.as a stimulant (for its caffeine content)
2.as an overall tonic (tones, balances, strengthens the body) and digestive aid
3.for obesity and as part of weight loss regimens
4.as a general nervine (balances/calms nerves) for nerve pain, nervous fatigue, and depression
5.for allergies and sinusitis

Properties/Actions Documented by Research:
anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antispasmodic, bile stimulant, stimulant, thermogenic (increases fat burning), vasodilator

Other Properties/Actions Documented by Traditional Use:
anti-allergy, antidepressant, appetite suppressant, blood cleanser, cardiotonic (tones, balances, strengthens the heart), central nervous system stimulant, digestive stimulant, hypotensive (lowers blood pressure), nervine (balances/calms nerves), neurasthenic (reduces nerve pain), neuroprotective (protects brain cells), purgative (strong laxative)

Cautions: It contains natural caffeine. Don’t use if allergic to caffeine or zanthines

Health effects:
As of 2011 there has not been any double-blind, randomized prospective clinical trial of mate drinking with respect to chronic disease. However, a variety of studies have indicated the antioxidants and nutritional benefits combine to help improve the immune system, detoxify the body, relieve allergies, reduce the risk of diabetes and hypoglycemia, burns more calories, acts as an appetite suppressant and weight loss tool, increases the supply of nutrients and oxygen to the heart, may reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes, increases mental energy and focus, improves mood, and promotes a deeper sleep, however sleep may be affected in people who are sensitive to caffeine.

Lipid metabolism:
Some non-blinded studies have found mate consumption to be effective in lipid lowering. Studies in animals and humans have observed hypocholesterolemic effects of Ilex paraguariensis aqueous extracts. A single-blind controlled trial of 102 volunteers found that after 40 days of drinking 330 mL / day of mate tea (concentration 50g dry leaves / L water), people with already-healthy cholesterol levels experienced an 8.7% reduction in LDL, and hyperlipidemic individuals experienced an 8.6% reduction in LDL and a 4.4% increase in HDL, on average. Participants already on statin therapy saw a 13.1% reduction in LDL and a 6.2% increase in HDL. The authors thus concluded that drinking yerba mate infusions may reduce the risk for cardiovascular diseases.

Cancer:
Mate consumption is associated with oral cancer esophagus cancer, cancer of the larynx,  and squamous cell of the head and neck. The mechanism is believed to be due to the effect of high consumption temperature, rather than due to any innate properties of mate as a beverage.

A study by the International Agency for Research on Cancer showed a limited correlation between oral cancer and the drinking of large quantities of “hot mate”. Smaller quantities (less than 1 liter daily) were found to increase risk only slightly, though alcohol and tobacco consumption had a synergistic effect on increasing oral, throat, and esophageal cancer. The study notes the possibility that the increased risk, rather than stemming from the mate itself, could be credited to the high (near-boiling) temperatures at which the mate is consumed in its most traditional way, the chimarrão. The cellular damage caused by thermal stress could lead the esophagus and gastric epithelium to be metaplasic, adapting to the chronic injury. Then, mutations would lead to cellular dysplasia and to cancer. While the IARC study does not specify a specific temperature range for “hot mate”, it lists general (not “hot”) mate drinking separately, but does not possess the data to assess its effect. It also does not address, in comparison, any effect of consumption temperature with regard to coffee or tea.

Obesity:
Few data are available on the effects of yerba mate on weight in humans and further study may be warranted.

 

Disclaimer:
The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.

Resources:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yerba_mate
http://www.rain-tree.com/yerbamate.htm#.UeASRr7D-eA
http://www.anniesremedy.com/herb_detail159.php

Eriodictyon angustifolium

Botanical Name : Eriodictyon angustifolium
Family: Boraginaceae
Subfamily: Hydrophylloideae
Genus: Eriodictyon
Species: E. angustifolium
Kingdom: Plantae

Common Names : Narrow-leaved Yerba Santa,Narrowleaf yerba santa

Habitat :Eriodictyon angustifolium is native to California and is also found outside of California, but is confined to western North America. It is  found  primarily in California, Utah, Nevada, and Baja California.

Description:
Eriodictyon angustifolium is a perennial shrub.This plant has white, five-petalled flowers that bloom in June or July. The toothed leaves, about 10 centimeters in length, are sticky above and hairy below.

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You may click to see more pictures of Eriodictyon angustifolium :

Medicinal Uses:
An important lung and bronchial medicine, most useful when phlegm is loose, milky, and profuse and the lungs, throat, and  sinuses feel weak and boggy.  Often combined with Yerba de buey.  It also is effective for head colds and sinus infections. The cold tea is used as a disinfecting diuretic for bladder and urethra pain.  New research is showing that it also has some anti-microbial properties.

Yerba Santa’s medicinal properties are strongest right after blooming, either in late spring or after a drought-breaking rain has brought out new foliage. Use the leaves either fresh or dried. Gather by breaking off branches full of leaves. Spread out the branches or hang them individually to dry. If you leave the branches clumped together in a bag or box, the resin on the tops of the leaves will glue the leaves together so you will end up with a black, sticky, unusable mass. Once dried, the resin is no longer a problem. When using fresh leaves for tea or tincture, cut them into small pieces with scissors or a knife, then use alcohol to clean the resin build up from the utensil. If dried leaves are being used, simply crumble them into small pieces. For smoking, it is best to use the mature leaves that are starting to dry and turn yellow around the edges and are almost ready to fall off, found near the base of large stems and the main trunk of the bush.

Yerba Santa is a great upper respiratory herb. It has a resinous coating and is aromatic. Use as a tea or tincture for coughs, lung and sinus congestion and infused in oil for muscle and chest rubs. In order to infuse Yerba Santa into oil you must first sprinkle it with alcohol to dissolve the resins. Drink the tea hot to induce sweating to break a fever. Inhale the steam from the hot tea to clear sinus and chest congestion. It thins mucous and is useful as an expectorant, decongestant and bronchial dilator for chest colds, bronchitis, asthma, sinus infections and hay fever. The resin complex and phenols in Yerba Santa make it useful for mild bladder and urethra infections. Since these properties are only partially water soluble, an alcohol tincture is preferable, twenty to thirty drops in water several times per day. Yerba Santa has no specific toxicities in moderate doses and up to an ounce of the leaves can be used to make a tea or infusion to drink in one day. It is safe for children, using one half of the normal adult dose. The leaves can also be used in a vaporizor to relief congestion.

Inhaling smoke from Yerba Santa leaves is useful to calm mild bronchial spasms. Burning a Yerba Santa smudge can be used to warm up trigger points, especially on the hands and feet. This will give relief from headache and muscle spasms. The fresh leaves make a pleasant and tasty chewing gum, bitter and balsamic at first, with a sweet aftertaste which freshens the mouth and breath. In Baja, for skin eruptions, boil leaves with Atriplex and wash the sores. Or grind dry leaves and apply. For malaria, make a tea with Haplopappus and Larrea, and massage with the lotion. For stiff neck, tie the leaves around the throat. For sore throat, make a leaf tea. For aches, bruises, wounds, bruises, wounds, heat leaves, apply to affected area. For coughs, colds, boil leaves and drink.

Disclaimer:The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplements, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider

Resources:
http://www.calflora.org/cgi-bin/species_query.cgi?where-calrecnum=3181
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eriodictyon_angustifolium
http://calphotos.berkeley.edu/cgi-bin/img_query?rel-taxon=contains&where-taxon=Eriodictyon+angustifolium
http://www.herbnet.com/Herb%20Uses_UZ.htm

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