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6 Coffee Alternatives to Brighten Your Day



We’re celebrating National Coffee Day a bit differently this year. We know that sometimes coffee is the fuel you need to keep up with your little ones and, in those cases, may your coffee be stronger than your toddler :) However, having too much coffee (like having too much of anything) can have negative side effects as well.

From our experience as mamas, here are a few reasons why cutting coffee and limiting your caffeine intake may be beneficial. 

The Rush

With a hurried and amped start to the day, we sometimes get moving a bit too quickly and can be more forgetful when feeling the rush of a caffeine buzz in the morning. By keeping away from the Keurig and tackling the morning tasks, we can have a more gradual start to the day and hopefully not be as forgetful. 

The Jitters 

Sure, a cup of coffee can be the wakeup call you need to care for your tiny humans when they’re ready for the day at 5am, but too much caffeine can make you feel jittery. Other side effects we’ve noticed include sensitivity to sound, shorter temper and less patience which are not ideal with our vocal and active little ones. By skipping the morning cup (or at least not downing ½ a pot), our mornings feel calmer and we can focus our energy with intention.

The Crash

When the caffeine high is over, the crash comes quickly. Extreme sleepiness, inability to focus and irritability are all signs of the crash. If your morning caffeine is mission critical, we always recommend having a protein-rich breakfast first, so your body has calories to burn once the caffeine wears off.

Your Health

Cream, sugar, flavoring… what you add to your coffee matters. One cup of black coffee has 0g of sugar, but if your go-to drink this fall is a Pumpkin Spice Latte, there is anywhere from 19-64 grams of sugar per cup, depending on the size. Too much sugar can enhance the rush, jitters and crash mentioned above.

So, what we’re trying to say here is let coffee be an occasion instead of an addiction. Enjoy it but don’t depend on it to fuel your day. If you’re looking to quit caffeine (or moderate your intake), here are our top six favorite substitutes for that daily cup of Joe! 

  1. Kombucha: We just tried Suja Juice’s new Kombucha and are hooked! Why? For starters, it’s certified *non-alcoholic! It’s also organic and non-GMO, comes in 4 delicious flavors and will get your gut going for the day.
  2. Guayusa Tea: We love Runa loose leaf tea. The guayusa contains caffeine, but a “unique combination that creates the experience of sustained clarity and focus.” (1)
  3. Water: Flat, sparkling, infused or coconut. It’s simple, but effective. Starting your day with a glass of water helps drain toxins from your system. Remember, the ideal amount of water you should drink in a day is about 8 8oz glasses.
  4. Matcha Green Tea: Though it contains caffeine, it also has L-Theanine (a rare amino acid that promotes a state of relaxation) (2) and steady energy instead of the coffee jitters or crash.
  5. Apple: Eating an apple is a healthy alternative to drinking coffee. Though they don’t contain caffeine, the natural sugar in apples creates a similar bodily response as caffeine. We use whole apples (peel included!) in our applesauce for a convenient and healthy snack to start your day.
  6. Golden Mylk: The vibrant color and warm, comforting taste of golden mylk is why it made our list! Simply whisk coconut milk, turmeric, cinnamon, ginger, honey, and a small amount of coconut oil together on the stove until it comes to a low boil and then simmer for 5 minutes. Your whole family can sip and savor in the mornings for an energizing, and inflammation fighting treat! Both powdered/dry turmeric and fresh turmeric root have been growing in popularity as people discover its many health benefits. It’s great for the whole family, including your little ones, which is why we incorporate it into our Gold-y Mango & the 3 Coconuts blend!

If you can’t quite kick the cup, we understand completely (we’ve been there!). Everything in moderation, right? Plus, sometimes we deserve an indulgent drink all to ourselves J If you’re looking for more flavor, less acidity and a quick pick-me-up, we always suggest cold brew coffee and Chameleon Cold Brew is one of our favorite brands! We prefer cold brew when reaching for a cup of coffee for a number of reasons.

Temperature and brew time both affect the flavor of coffee. Hot coffee brews more quickly, dissolving flavor and aroma faster as well which results in a more bitter taste. Cold brew is brewed over several hours or days resulting in a naturally sweeter flavor.

As for less acidity, it’s about more than just taste. The lower acidity also positively affects our bodies since “the human body thrives with a higher level of alkalinity than acidity, and the foods and drinks we ingest determine, in part, our pH levels.” (2) And since cold brew is more alkaline than hot coffee, according to Nutritionist Vicki Edgson, the body functions best when in a relatively alkaline state. (4)

So, we’re taking a break from coffee this #NationalCoffeeDay which we realize is a bit unconventional, but we invite you to join us on our journey! If you’re up for it and want to try one of our alternatives above, enter below for a chance to win a 6-pack of Suja’s NEW Kombucha! 

*Ask your doctor about non-alchoholic kombucha if you are breastfeeding.

 

SOURCES

  1. http://runa.org/loose-leaf-tea/
  2. “Health Benefits of Matcha Tea.” Matcha Source, matchasource.com/health-benefits-of-matcha-tea/. Accessed 26 Sept. 2017.
  3. Writer, Michelle Miesse HLMS Staff. “Some benefits of drinking cold-Brew coffee.” Healthy Living Made Simple, healthylivingmadesimple.com/benefits-drinking-cold-brew-coffee/. Accessed 26 Sept. 2017.
  4. Svokos, Alexandra. “People Who Drink Iced Coffee Are Healthier - With One Catch.” Elite Daily, 22 Sept. 2015, elitedaily.com/life/culture/iced-coffee-health-benefits/1221315/. Accessed 26 Sept. 2017.