Among the travelers to the highlands in Peru, the typical questions that Tour guides listen every time is:
What is the Coca Tea? It is a drug? It is good for the high sickness? It is legal?
Coca tea, also known as Mate de Coca in Spanish, has nothing to do with the typical Mate from Argentina or Uruguay.
Actually the Coca tea is an herbal tea or infusion made using the raw leaves of the coca plant, which is native to South America. It is greenish yellow in color and has a mild bitter flavor similar to green tea with a more organic sweetness.
Even though the coca’s leave have 13 alkaloids components such as the famous cocaine, it is not a drug. Firstly, you need kilos of coca leave and a cocktail of chemicals to have the drug effects and secondly, as reaction of the alkaloid named Cocaine with the saliva and the gastronomical juices, it becomes EGNONINE in our body, which has properties to metabolize fats and carbohydrates, which improves the assimilation of food to the human body.
The main virtue of the Ecgnonina is to elevate the glucose of the blood and does it for a prolonged time, reason for which, suppresses the appetite.
Good, so if it ok to drink it for high sickness?
Yes it is, but still we suggest to be reasonable when you drink it. Especially people with cardiac conditions, with the affected heart, should limit their consumption to the infusion of coca or before bedtime. We generally do not recommend it because in some people it has the effect of taking away sleep, because of its energetic and stimulating components.
And why is good because it has another component called Globulin, according to a study published by the journal "Ecological Option" ; that compound is a natural alkaloid that regulates the lack of oxygen in the environment. The mate the Coca regulates blood pressure, body temperature, is a great antidepressant and helps to burn fat, cool!
It is legal? Yes but in South America, mostly Peru, Ecuador, Colombia and Bolivia. It sold fresh in the popular markets and also as tea filters, but unfortunately is not allowed to take it to other countries due to his bad reputation as Cocaine. In the Andes is considered a sacred leave since the pre-Incas times, used for ancestral ceremonies, natural medicine and Tea.
So enjoy always with prudency meanwhile you are visiting the South!