Does drinking (too much) coffee make you jittery, anxious or makes it harder to fall asleep? You’re not alone.
There’s a lot of conflicting evidence about coffee. Some research states that a moderate caffeine consumption may actually be good for you, while other studies found adverse side-effects of excess caffeine, like insomnia, anxiety and heart palpations.
One of the explanations for these mixed results may lie in your genes. Thanks to genetic variations, some people produce a less active version of the enzyme responsible for metabolizing caffeine than others. If that’s the case, caffeine will stay in your body and brain for a longer period of time. As a result, the physiological effects of caffeine will be more pronounced. That’s why slow-metabolizers experience are more sensitive to consuming caffeine than fast-metabolizers.
And of course, things like your liver health, use of oral contraceptives or being pregnant also play a role in caffeine sensitivity.
Whatever your reasons for wanting to cut back on caffeine, you can still wake up to a warming, energizing drink. Try these 9 coffee alternatives to start your day off with a bang.
1. Warm Lemon Water
Drinking warm lemon water first thing in the morning is a great way to hydrate yourself, aid your digestion, boost your immunity and freshen your breath. To get these health benefits, simply squeeze fresh lemon juice in a glass of lukewarm water. If you’re looking for an even bigger health boost, you can add a healing mixture of lemon, ginger and honey to your mug of hot water, like this DIY Home Remedy from Simple Green Smoothies.
2. Chicory Coffee
Chicory coffee is a traditional alternative for coffee, using roasted chicory root instead of coffee beans to brew a similar-tasting drink. Studies suggests that chicory root may have additional perks for your health. Chicory root contains a type of fiber called inulin, which may support a healthy gut flora and help lower your blood sugar levels. Try this AIP “Bulletproof” Style Dandelion and Chicory Coffee from AutoImmune Wellness as a healthy substitute for your morning cup of Joe.
3. Matcha Latte
Ok, technically this bright green, frothy drink isn’t caffeine- free. Matcha is made from green tea leaves grinded into a powder. It contains about 25mg of caffeine per cup. Not only is that a smaller amount than your standard cup of coffee, but matcha tea is also known for a softer energy buzz. That, combined with the documented health benefits of green tea, makes matcha tea the perfect pick-me-up to beat the slump. As if you needed more excuses to enjoy this delicious Coconut Butter Matcha Latte from Will Frolic for Food!
4. Herbal Tea
Herbal teas are infusions made from a wide variety of dried flowers, fruits, herbs and spices – all with their own health-promoting properties. Despite their name, herbal teas don’t contain tea leaves at all, meaning there’s no caffeine in them. There’s an aromatic herbal tea for every flavor, so try the Homemade Tea Blends from Tuulia or get the finest selection of herbal teas from Plum Deluxe.
5. Golden Milk
The blogosphere embraced this health-boosting hot drink a while ago – and for good reason. Packed with inflammation-fighting turmeric and warming spices like cardamom and vanilla, golden milk doesn’t just taste great, it helps you feel better too. Try the Vedic Golden Milk from EarthSprout or the Golden Dandelion Latte from Dolly and Oatmeal to stock up on antioxidants in a delicious way!
6. Health Tonic
The name tonic refers to medicinal liquids meant to improve your overall wellbeing. That’s a bold statement for a drink, I know. But some healthy sips are just filled to the brim with health-promoting ingredients. Just take a look at the Ultimate Medicinal Mushroom Tonic from Nutrition Stripped or the Spiced Beet Tonic from Tending the Table. Who doesn’t love a warming, nourishing drink that boosts your health too?
7. Chai Tea
Chai tea is an Indian spiced tea mixture. Traditionally, chai is made from strong black tea with milk, sweetener and warming spices like cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, ginger and black peppercorns. You can make a caffeine-free version of Chai Latte with Adaptogens for Stress Relief from The Awesome Green or simply steep the Full Moon Chai from Plum Deluxe in some hot water.
8. London Fog
It’s the ultimate latte with a hint of sweetness and a soft buzz of caffeine: the London Fog. The Healthy Maven shows you how to make this earl grey latte with foamy milk and vanilla. Perfect for cold winter mornings!
9. ‘Superfood’ Latte
If you’re cutting back on coffee, why not substitute your plain old latte for one packed with nutrients? Whether you prefer The First Mess’ Instant Calm Latte with chamomile and lavender or the Cozy Carrot Cake Latte that will give you a boost of vitamin C, carotenoids and disease-fighting compounds, add a little something extra to your morning cuppa!
What’s your favorite caffeine-free drink to warm up with?
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