4 Energizing Morning Recipes that AREN'T Coffee
A common question I get asked a lot: Is my coffee habit healthy?
Yes and no.
A question I never get asked, but want to address anyway: Is it one of Earth’s most delicious and amazing creations?
I’d argue that it’s up there for sure!
I have a deep love for coffee and it’s etched deep down into my bones. As a kid, I loved the smell so much that my dad would pour me a little cup to take with me on our early morning walks together just so I could smell it when we walked.
I associate it with the quiet minutes with my family before the craziness of the day begins and an excuse to see and connect with the people I love. You probably have associations like this too that make coffee so much more than just a drink.
Coffee is one of the most anticipated and sacred parts of our morning rituals, and I think that’s okay.
Coffee is rich in antioxidants and has proven health benefits such as preventing Alzheimers and protect against Parkinson’s Disease, it’s been shown to reduce the risk of Type 2 Diabetes, reducing the risk of getting MS and also reduces your risk of getting colorectal cancer. Click here to learn more and for links to the studies.
As much as I love it, my relationship with it had to change when I struggled with my hormones and adrenal issues. Though, I loved the taste the caffeine would leave me feeling anxious, jittery and then because I was struggling with my energy, I’d drink too much to help prop me up— keeping me anxious and simultaneously keeping me wired too late into the night which interfered with my sleep.
It’s funny, many of us stimulate all day long with caffeinated drinks (and supplements) and then question why we don’t sleep well at night.
ANYWAYS, what I’m really getting at is that coffee can be a healthful food, but I don’t think it’s healthy for us to RELY on something to function properly and I think if we are addicted to the point where we are irritable and physically unwell without it, then we need to check ourselves and our relationship with caffeine and press reset on that relationship.
If you are struggling with your hormones or ongoing energy issues, I recommend taking a coffee break (and sorry, not the coffee break you are used to), I mean a break from drinking coffee for 30 days.
It’s a chance to check-in and gauge your body’s TRUE energy and I think that’s cool—and empowering… especially if you haven’t done this in a while. Not only will you gain a firm understanding of your morning energy levels and how your energy fluctuates throughout the day— you can clearly gauge how the type of meals you have influence it too and you will clearly see if coffee was something you were relying on to prop you up.
A 30 day break from coffee can not only teach you something about yourself and break the addictive habit, but it will give your hormones a nice break and chance to balance out. The question is what can you have in its place to help fill the void? Below, I am sharing 4 ways to energize without coffee.
4 ENERGIZING DRINKS THAT AREN’T COFFEE
1. MATCHA LATTE
Matcha is a strong dose of green tea because instead of sipping on the brew of steeped green tea leaves, you actually mix the ground leaves up and drink them. This increases the nutrition and antioxidants you get to the point that it’s like having 10 CUPS OF REGULAR GREEN TEA. So of course, this can be great for our metabolism, mental focus (due to a high concentration of the calming amino-acid, L-Theanine) and our immunity too.
Blend the following ingredients together:
1 cup steamed nut milk (cold milk + ice can be used to make an iced version)
1 tsp organic matcha powder (unless you use MATCH NINJA (my favorite matcha on the market), you will have to whisk your matcha together with hot (not boiling water) until smooth. Then you can add it to the other ingredients)
1 tsp maple syrup, honey, monk fruit or stevia (choice is up to you)
a pinch of sea salt
*note: Matcha does contain caffeine, but its energy boost is slower and more steady compared to coffee; this makes it a bit easier on the hormones.
2. GOLDEN MILK
Golden Milk is a warming, comforting and great for fighting inflammation due to its potent dose of turmeric and circulation boosting herbs like ginger and cinnamon. I like to enjoy this in the anytime of day, but especially at night becuause it’s a great support for an over-driven nervous system.
Heat and blend the following ingredients together:
1 cup steamed nut milk
1 tsp turmeric powder
1/4 tsp cinnamon powder
1/4 tsp ginger powder
a sprinkle of cardamom
a pinch of black pepper (this will help make the anti-inflammatory curcumin in the turmeric more absorbable to your body)
a dash of vanilla
1 tsp grass-fed butter or 1 tsp coconut oil/butter (the fat helps with absorption as well)
1 tbsp honey
If you like to enjoy .golden milk on the regular, I recommend mixing all the dried herbs together in a glass container so you can shake it up and add a TBSP quickly and easily whenever you want to make this recipe.
3. ROOIBOS CHAI LATTE
Rooibos is a caffeine-free, antioxidant rich free that can be enjoyed on its own or with other flavorful spices mixed in (like chai herbs). It is pleasant both straight or with a milk of your choice.
1 cup brewed rooibos chai tea
If you have the loose leaves you can run this through an espresso machine to make a “red rooibos espresso”
add steamed milk and sweetener of choice if desired
4. CHICORY ROOT AMERICANO
Chicory and dandelion can be roasted and ground, just like coffee beans. There are many companies that sell chicory based coffee alternatives that can be brewed like traditional coffee in drip coffee machines, french press, an espresso machine, etc. It’s caffeine free and tastes quite similar to coffee.
You can dress it up however you take your normal coffee.
You may need to play to figure out the strength you like, for instance if you like strong coffee you may use a heavy hand with the serving size.
I recommend taking a few weeks off coffee every now and then to prove to yourself that you DON’T need it to function and to keep your relationship with caffeine in check.
In my opinion, coffee in moderation can be a health drink— but that being said there are things that you can do to help KEEP it a health drink or at least help make it the healthiest version of itself as possible. Click here to watch my video on how to healthy up your coffee if you are a coffee drinker.