The prevalence of obesity has increased worldwide over the past three decades. Global anti-obesity strategies focus on dietary and lifestyle modifications to slow the development of obesity. Research in the nutrition field has recently aroused considerable interest based on the potential of natural products to counteract obesity. Several studies have identified yerba maté (Ilex paraguariensis
) as an excellent candidate. In this review, we evaluated the impact of yerba maté on obesity and obesity-related inflammation. Cellular studies demonstrate that yerba maté suppresses adipocyte differentiation and triglyceride accumulation and reduces inflammation. Animal studies show that yerba maté modulates signaling pathways that regulate adipogenesis, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and insulin signaling responses. In summary, the data presented here showed that the use of yerba maté might be useful against obesity, improving the lipid parameters in humans and animal models. In addition, yerba maté modulates the expression of genes that are changed in the obese state and restores them to more normal levels of expression. In doing so, it addresses several of the abnormal and disease-causing factors associated with obesity. Protective and ameliorative effects on insulin resistance were also observed. Thus, as a general conclusion, it seems that yerba maté beverages and supplements might be helpful in the battle against obesity.
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License
which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited