With 2017 set to be the year of botanicals it's an exciting time for Botanic Lab as many of the ingredients that we champion come into the spotlight. Botanical complexity is at the heart of everything we do (the clue is in our name). We have relished the challenge of incorporating these powerful and interesting ingredients into drinks that will excite your taste buds. That's not always the easiest of tasks. In meaningful quantities, many potent botanicals have a challenging flavour and are avoided by mainstream food producers.
In this series of posts, we'd like to share with you some of our favourite botanical ingredients - the history, origin and traditional uses and give you an insight into the very special plants that we put at the centre of our drink creations.
Yerba mate (pronounced mah-tay) is one such botanical. A species of the holly family with the botanical name Ilex paraguariensis, mate is traditionally consumed as a tea in central and southern regions of South America, particularly Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay, Southern and Central-Western Brazil, the Chaco region of Bolivia and Southern Chile. Yerba mate was initially utilised and cultivated by the indigenous Guarani and Tupi communities in southern Brazil, prior to European colonisation.
Mate is of often referred to as 'the drink of the Gods' and is recognised for having the "strength of coffee, the health benefits of tea, and the euphoria of chocolate” all in one package. It's a nutritional powerhouse boasting a high mineral and antioxidant content. It contains almost 90% more antioxidants than green tea, and a unique blend of amino acids, polyphenols and minerals which when combined promote focus and concentration without the jitters often associated with coffee.
Mate is also known to boost the metabolism and increase energy uptake from food. Regular consumption is said to help prevent the build up of lactic acid in the muscles when working out which makes it popular with athletes and those who workout regularly.
As you know, Botanic Lab are known for making functional drinks that offer stimulation to your taste buds and your senses. Our best selling chocolate milk for grown ups, PLANTMILK 2, with 7000mg of Yerba Mate provides a calm and balanced energy boost, the perfect ratio of macro-nutrients (for a balanced meal) and a flavour to keep you coming back for more.