From what age can you drink Yerba Mate?

The Yerba Mate drink is gaining more and more fans all over the world, not only in South America. This means that among the supporters of this infusion there are people of different ages, older, mature, but also younger and younger. Can children drink Yerba Mate without fear of harm to their health? From what age can you drink Yerba Mate? We provide answers to all these questions in this article. We cordially invite you to read it.

A boy drinking yerba mate with matero
A boy drinking yerba mate

Can Yerba Mate be dangerous for children?

Yerba Mate has many positive nutrients and minerals. The only downside that may overshadow this infusion is its relatively high caffeine content. Can we give Yerba Mate to children? The latest scientific research on  caffeine makes us realize that the devil is not as scary as he is painted. It turns out that consuming caffeine in moderate amounts by children does not cause any visible changes in physical activity or attention . Only high concentrations of this alkaloid in the body can cause undesirable effects. So, as in everything in life, you have to keep the proverbial “golden mean”. However, we can give Yerba Mate to children from the age of one.

Caffeine consumption by children – caffeine not only in coffee

Caffeine is especially associated with coffee, but many different products contain it. We can find it in tea, Yerba Mate, carbonated drinks such as Coca-Cola, and even in significant amounts in chocolate. Therefore, caffeine consumption by children is normal. Is there a child who has never drank Coca-Cola or eaten chocolate in his life? Each of us has our own beliefs and eating habits. Some parents forbid their children from consuming excessive amounts of sweets and carbonated drinks – others turn a blind eye to it. However, it cannot be denied that the average child is exposed to caffeine from an early age. However, it should be noted that caffeine is not a recommended product in children’s nutrition. It does not contain any nutrients that could be necessary for a young, developing organism. You can learn more about caffeine from, among others, this  article .

Caffeine content in individual products
The graphic above illustrates which products contain caffeine. Source: https://www.homegrounds.co/where-does-caffeine-come-from/

So why should we give Yerba to children?

Caffeine has a primarily stimulating effect on the body. So why should we give it to children? The answer is simple: because we consume Yerba Mate ourselves. When our child sees its parents drinking this drink from an early age, it will most likely want to drink it at a certain age. So what does the issue of consuming Yerba Mate by children look like in practice?

Small children (from one to two years old

Children at this age do not yet know treats such as chocolate or coca-cola. You should also be careful with Yerba Mate in this case. If we give it to a child in too large quantities, we may have problems putting him to sleep due to excessive stimulation. We have three solutions to this situation:

  • do not give Yerba Mate at all, but sooner or later the baby will most likely become interested in our drink again – so this is a temporary solution;
  • drink the entire drink and let the child draw only air through a straw;
  • give the child a sip of Yerba that has already been poured for the first time. In such a situation, the infusion contains a small amount of caffeine. So we can be safe about the child.

Preschool child

Unlike the first case, the preschooler has rather constant contact with products such as chocolate or carbonated drinks, so a small amount of Yerba Mate will not be harmful to him. It is best to give your child an infusion poured 4 or 5 times so that the caffeine contained in it is as low as possible. We can also easily explain to a child that it is simply a drink dedicated to adults due to certain substances contained in it. The child should understand this. Probably, a preschooler will not like the bitterness of Yerba.

School children

A child of this age still does not need caffeine for anything, but he or she is most likely in relatively constant contact with products containing it (cocoa, chocolate, Coca-Cola). So if he drinks Yerba Mate from time to time, nothing bad will happen to him. Remember that this is also the period in which a young person learns eating habits that will affect his/her future life. Therefore, you should teach him to prefer clean water, water with lemon, natural juices, etc., i.e. products that will satisfy his thirst in the healthiest way.

Teenagers

Teenage children really want to imitate adults, so they also want to drink what they drink. It is not recommended for teenagers to consume energy drinks because, in addition to large amounts of sugar, they contain unhealthy, artificial substances that have a negative impact on the young body. So if your child really wants to drink caffeinated drinks, it is best to convince him to drink Yerba Mate. This drink definitely wins when compared to others in terms of health. If we have no objections to giving teenagers coffee, we should especially not have it in the case of Yerba Mate. 

It should also be noted that Yerba Mate provides the human body with a lot of nutrients and vitamins (e.g. magnesium, potassium, zinc and manganese), as well as vitamins A, B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12, C. and folic acid. In short, it has many health properties. Therefore, it is one of the healthiest alternatives compared to unhealthy carbonated and energy drinks. 

What about drinking Yerba Mate by children in South American countries?

In South American countries, especially those famous for the production of Yerba Mate, such as Brazil or Argentina, drinking Yerba Mate is considered an unwritten tradition and no one has any qualms about serving this drink there, even to three or four-year-old children. Naturally, the Yerba Mate that is given to them is slightly weaker than that drunk by adults. Usually these are the third or fourth flooding. The amount of caffeine in this type of infusion is much smaller.

So don’t be shocked by a photo like the one below. In a country where children from an early age are surrounded by adults drinking this unique drink, it is no wonder that they want to try it themselves as soon as possible. 

From what age can you drink Yerba Mate? A few words of summary

Scientific research clearly shows that the caffeine contained in Yerba Mate in moderate amounts is not harmful to the young body in any way. Therefore, we can give it to children, of course, maintaining the “golden mean”, from the first year of their life. Ultimately, it is a much healthier alternative to unhealthy and sweetened carbonated drinks. Let us remember that we know our own children best, we know what is best for them. The most important thing is that we do not go to extremes. Completely prohibiting a child from drinking Yerba Mate, for example, while we consume it ourselves every day, is a fundamentally unfair action and sooner or later it will have a negative impact on us. Similarly, we cannot go the other way and let a three- or four-year-old drink Yerba Mate from the first pouring, because such a thing may simply have a negative impact on his young body. You have to find a golden mean in everything. We encourage you to visit the Yerbador store website. You can buy tasty Yerba Mate there! This is a perfect place for anyone who loves this drink.

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Katarzyna Czaykowska
Katarzyna Czaykowska
2024-01-26
Dobrej jakości Yerba. A do tego w różnych wariantach, a co za tym idzie - i smakach. Dbałość o klienta, w formie telefonu z opisem innych produktów, ale absolutnie nie nachalnie. Będę stałą klientką.
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2024-01-23
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