For a global icon such as Pope Francis, being alert and focused is a must at all times. No wonder he has a favourite go-to drink that makes him mentally active!
Mate, or yerba mate is a traditional infused beverage famous in Argentina (in fact, it’s their national drink!). It is known as the Jesuit’s tea as it was domesticated by the Society of Jesus in the 17th century. The Jesuits were also responsible for the spread of its consumption—which is pretty fitting considering that Pope Francis is one of them! Here are three reasons why the Pope’s favorite drink may just be your alternative to your daily cup of Joe:
Mate is deliciously healthy
Traditionally served hot in a hollowed gourd with a metal straw, mate is made by steeping the leaves and stems of the Ilex paraguariensis tree. It is actually good for the health since it’s chock-full of anti-oxidants, boosts metabolism, and aids in digestion.
It has the same effects as coffee
We won’t be surprised if Lolo Kiko likes it because of its caffeine kick, which provides the same energy coffee does (minus the side effects like jitters and an upset stomach). According to mate fans, its immediate effects include alertness, increased energy, and enhanced mental clarity and focus. Though highly caffeinated, mate does not interfere with your sleeping patterns because it’s also a natural relaxant. Some people also consider mate similar to herbal green tea. However, mate is more robust and has a slightly higher anti-oxidant capacity.
Mate is known to foster connection and peace
Not only is Mate helpful for weight loss, bone health, and prevention of illnesses like heart disease and colon cancer, it is highly social, too! Traditionally taken in social settings, mate is known to represent connection, community, and peace as it symbolises friendship, respect, and altruism.
Sounds like the Pope’s cup of tea, all right!