Stuff We Like: Volume 4

Yerba mate (pronounced mate or mah-tay, we’re still not sure) – Yerba mate comes from the leaves of the yerba mate plant and is traditionally prepared using a hallowed-out gourd, hot (not boiling) water, and is drunk through a metal or bamboo straw with a filtered tip.

Yerba mate has been enjoyed for centuries in South American and Latin cultures (it’s Argentina’s national drink!), and has recently grown in popularity in the US. The taste of yerba mate is similar to green tea – earthy and grassy – which people tend to either love or hate. It also contains as much or a little less caffeine than green tea, and is equally healthful due to its tremendous antioxidant content, but there is definitely something different about it. While green tea and coffee and yerba mate will all give you a solid caffeine “buzz,” the latter is notably more uplifting and energizing, with a less noticeable or non-existent post-buzz “crash.” Perhaps it’s due to yerba mate’s higher content of amino acids, vitamins, and minerals, or its unique blend of xanthines (particularly “mateine”). Irregardless, if you’re a tea or coffee buff and haven’t tried yerba mate yet, definitely give it a shot.

Blender bottle – There’s nothing worse than a clumpy, chunky protein shake. The blender bottle takes an ordinary shaker bottle and adds a small metal ball that breaks up chunks for a smooth drink. It is also useful for scrambling eggs or mixing pancake batter. Mmm, pancakes. The 24 oz. size is big enough for protein shakes and pre-workout drinks, and the bottle seals tight so it never leaks.

Vinpocetine – You should know by now that we love nootropics – herbs, nutrients, and pharmaceuticals that can increase intelligence, memory, creativity, and other brain functions. One of our favorites is vinpocetine because it’s effective and cheap. One of our favorite brain function stacks is vinpocetine (10-20 mg) + piracetam (1000 mg) + DMAE (100-200 mg). Toss all three into a blender bottle with some yerba mate and you’ll be good to go!