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Non-Caffeinated Drinks That Give You A Natural Kick

Going coffee-free? Check out these alternatives!

Around the time I discovered that I like wine (lots of it), I also found out that I could not take coffee anymore. At the time, I would take two cups of coffee, made lovingly for me by my husband and then at night drink two glasses of wine; also lovingly poured by my husband. My stomach hasn’t been great, always prone to acidity and GERD even from a young age, so I had to choose to give up one thing—wine or coffee. In the end, wine won.


My first morning without coffee what horrible. I had a migraine all day and I was grumpy. The migraine thankfully only lasted for one full day, with bouts of headaches for another three, grumpiness was a little longer. After about five days, I woke up feeling clear headed. I had only had lemon water for the first days to ‘detox’ the caffeine out of my system and get myself used to not having any, before deciding what to replace my morning cup of joe with. These days I have black tea or a matcha latte, depending on how much time I have to spare.

After kicking the big caffeine boost in the morning, I realized just how addictive a little cup can be. I realized that I mistook the caffeine boost for energy, when really, it wasn’t. These days I rely more on real energy that comes from eating a plant-based diet and getting lots of sleep. I can wake up in the morning and not have any black tea or matcha (although now it’s more for the comfort and routine of having it rather than needing it to wake up). I found some alternatives to the warm cup of coffee in the morning that will actually give you a cleaner burn throughout the day:


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APPLES

An apple in the morning can give you a big boost of energy. Loaded with 13 grams of sugar on average, this will surely kick start your morning. Unlike taking a spoonful of sugar, the fiber in the apple allows your body to metabolize this at a steady rate.


PEPPERMINT TEA

A minty fresh morning is sure to start you off on the right foot. Peppermint essence and essential oils are known to give you a boost of energy, so a fresh cup of this will do the same.

GINSENG

Long known to enhance energy, Ginseng has been consumed in Eastern cultures for a very long time- even finding their way into K-dramas in little packets characters empty into their mouths for bursts of energy. I did not know the power of ginseng until I bought a little bottle at the Korean store with a bit of the root steeped in it. I was energized the entire day with a clear mind; this is probably the best alternative to caffeine that I have tried!


TURMERIC GINGER TEA WITH BLACK PEPPER

Anti-inflammatory and cleansing, the burst of ginger is sure to wake you up, while preparing your digestive system for the day. The ginger also keeps hunger at bay so that you don’t scarf down your breakfast.

MACA

Maca is an ancient super food, consumed by Aztec warriors to give them energy. Today it is sold in health food stores in powder form and can be mixed in smoothies or oatmeal. It has a chalky taste, so I’ve found that smoothies are best. Follow the instructions on its use as too much in the beginning will have you running around! Gradually increase your dosage as you get used to it. 


VITAMIN B12

As someone who is plant-based, I regularly supplement with B12. This is to regulate your energy and sleep cycles. Although it’s not a replacement for your morning beverage, it can  regulate your sleep and energy cycles.


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Lead photo by Cleo Vermij on Unsplash