Coffee alternatives that are still worth getting out of bed for

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Entering its third phase, the lockdown has worn down the boundaries of our previously beloved routines – even drinking coffee. If you’re finding yourself sluggish but still reaching for a second – or third, or fourth – cup as the morning in your work from home office feels endless, an alternative beverage may be what your body and mind are actually craving. As winter slowly lifts, energise yourself during slightly earlier dawns by trying out these rejuvenating drinks.

Chai 

Masala chai is a tea originally from India which has gained traction in the West in recent years for its spicy yet sweet flavour. It’s made by combining black tea and the milk of your choice with aromatic herbs and spices such as cloves, ginger and cardamom. If still yearning for that extra caffeine boost, try concocting a dirty chai latte. Just follow any chai recipe and add your go-to home coffee.

Matcha

Although it’s an acquired taste, matcha has become a globally well-loved morning beverage. Traditionally consumed in East Asia, it’s composed of ground baby green tea leaves. While it provides the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee, its energy is more mellow and lasts for a longer period of time, reducing jitteriness.

Fruit smoothies

Simple yet refreshing, fruit smoothies are a rejuvenating treat to help kick start any dragging morning. Select your favourite fruits and milk or yogurt to create a luscious drink or base for your muesli of choice. Enhance any recipe by adding extras such as protein powder, nut butter or dark, leafy greens for varied options best-suited for your palette. Many grocery shops now even carry smoothie kits in their freezer aisles, simplifying the process even more so.

Golden milk 

Also known as turmeric milk, golden milk – similar to chai – is an Indian drink that has become increasingly popular in the West. The warming beverage is typically made from cow or plant-based milk with turmeric, cinnamon and ginger. Not only can you sip it in the morning, but it can also be incorporated into a relaxing bedtime ritual. Turmeric is reported to potentially lower anxiety levels and improve the consumer’s mood. 

Peppermint tea

Peppermint tea is an energising alternative to the typical breakfast tea. Naturally calorie- and caffeine-free, it will freshen the drinker’s breath, aid digestion and softly boost one’s energy. The oils from the peppermint are also said to reduce headache pains. Like golden milk, this beverage can be enjoyed at any time of the day with positive benefits.

Emma O’Regan-Reidy

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