Do you need a cup of coffee every morning to start your day? Coffee addiction is real. If you find yourself needing a little boost to stop the jitters, or even just find yourself crashing during the day without coffee, you’re not alone. Fortunately, there are many alternatives out there that can deliver similar, if not better results than coffee. Plus, they sometimes have extra health benefits you may not have thought about.
The most obvious replacement for coffee is tea, and there’s a wide variety of energy boosting tea on the market, including green tea. Green tea has 75 percent less of the caffeine per dosage than coffee. For reference, a cup of black coffee has between at least 100 mg of caffeine, compared to just 25 mg of caffeine in a cup of green tea, based on average brewing time. Other teas, such as black and chai, have a similar amount of caffeine per cup.
Here’s another reason to try switching to tea. Black, green, and oolong tea are known for their antioxidants. Antioxidants are the disease-fighting compounds that help ward off sickness. While herbal teas have antioxidants as well, it’s these three that pack the most and are most well-known. If you weren’t convinced already to try switching to tea, here’s another fun fact about tea: black, green, and oolong tea have ten times more antioxidants than fruits and vegetables. When looking at the world’s largest tea drinkers, Japan and China, instances of heart disease are much lower.
Tea is available practically anywhere coffee is also sold so it makes it a great alternative, especially if you worry you’ll run to the closest coffee shop to get your fix.
If you just can’t let go of the taste of coffee but want to cut back on caffeine intake, switch to decaffeinated coffee. There will still be traces of caffeine in decaffeinated coffee, ranging from 8.6 to 13.9 mg per cup, but is still substantially lower than 100 mg per cup that you get from non-decaf coffee. This can be an alternative to going cold turkey on breaking coffee and still get the flavor and smells of coffee that you may have grown accustomed.
Okay, give this a listen. Yes, it’s not a beverage. But if you drink coffee solely for the energy to wake up in the morning, reconsider your daily routine and try working out instead. Exercising when you wake up literally wakes up your body. Morning workouts improve the amount of oxygen that goes to your brain and muscles, meaning you’ll have more energy throughout the day. It can boost the brain in terms of helping memory retention as well. Besides being an early bird and preparing you mentally for the day, a morning workout in lieu of coffee provides other benefits that coffee can’t beat. For one, regular morning workouts can stave off food cravings. In a Brigham Young University study, 240 women exercised with cardio for forty-five minutes each day. The researchers found that the women who worked out had a lower brain response to images of food and moved around more during the day. If you stick to a schedule, working out in the morning can be a great alternative to reaching to that cup of coffee.
These are just a handful of ways to help break an addiction to coffee and help reduce daily caffeine intake. Each of these strategies can be combined together for a winning formula to give you energy for your day and cut back on caffeine. See which ones work best for you!