Are you a slave to your morning coffee? Do you need at least one cup to function as a normal human being? Do you get a little snippy without it? You’re not alone. 68 million Americans drink at least three cups of coffee a day, with an estimated three of four actually addicted to it.
Maybe it’s the seductive aroma; maybe it’s the jolt of energy it gives you the moment it touches your lips. Whatever it is that draws you to coffee, there are even more reasons to ditch the Joe and adopt an all natural alternative instead.
Five good reasons to ditch coffee
Dr. Mark Hyman is a physician, scholar and New York Times best-selling author dedicated to helping Americans get healthier and curb their addictions. Here are five of his reasons you need to ditch coffee right now:
- The caffeine found in coffee increases the stress response, which elicits cortisol production and increases insulin levels, making you feel tired and sluggish.
- Coffee’s acidity contributes to heartburn, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD, a chronic digestive disease) and more.
- Coffee raises homocysteine levels, which correspond to increased risk for heart disease.
- Serotonin synthesis in the brain may be negatively affected by coffee, contributing to depression.
- Coffee increases the output of calcium, magnesium and potassium in your urine, which leads to dehydration.
All natural drinks to give you more energy
Apple cider vinegar
Add a little pep to your step with apple cider vinegar. Touted as a whole-body health tonic, apple cider vinegar contains amino acids that combat the buildup of lactic acid in your muscles following a strenuous workout. It also features a unique combination of potassium and enzymes that help relieve feelings of sluggishness. Two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar added to a glass of water is all you need to feel better, faster.
Okay, so not technically a drink, but due to their absorbency, you can combine chia seeds with nearly any liquid — they’re especially tasty in smoothies! Another of Mother Earth’s superfoods, chia seeds pack an energy punch that can’t be beat. These tiny little titans boast the ideal ratio of proteins, omega-3 fats and fiber for sustained energy. And because they’re low carb, you don’t have to worry about crashing later.
You’ve probably heard all about the health benefits of green tea: it improves brain function and physical performance, it’s a powerful antioxidant, it lowers your risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, it reduces the risk of heart disease and much more. It also contains a small amount of caffeine, but unlike coffee, the release is longer and more sustained. This helps ward off the jitters.
If you haven’t tried kombucha, you’re missing out. A fermented beverage rich in probiotics, vinegar, b vitamins, enzymes and a high concentration of acids, kombucha provides you with the energy boost you need, without the harmful side effects of coffee. The invigorating properties of kombucha are attributed to iron formation released from black tea during the fermentation process.
Surprised to see water on this list? Don’t be. Water is the giver of life. Your brain is made up of 76% water. When you’re dehydrated, which can happen quite easily when you drink coffee, your brain doesn’t function at maximum efficiency. Swapping out your morning coffee for a few glasses of water instead ensures you have the energy to take on the day!
Still craving caffeine? Yerba mate may be the answer. A traditional South American beverage, yerba mate is said to have the “strength of coffee, the health benefits of tea and the euphoria of chocolate.” That’s quite the statement, and the facts back it up. Containing 24 vitamins and minerals, 15 amino acids and a variety of antioxidants, yerba mate has more caffeine than green tea, but less than coffee. It’s also less oily than coffee, which means less digestive distress.
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Do you know someone who is addicted to coffee? Someone who gets intense headaches or is jittery without their daily brew? Help them out by sharing this article.