Coffee has, for hundreds of years been consumed for its stimulating effects, concentration and taste!
For most of us it has become a daily staple, and a ritual that is set in stone.
Although coffee does have some benefits; it is rich in antioxidants of the bio flavonoid variety and it can boost metabolism if drunk pre-workout.
It is very acidic and contains a compound, theobromine which can leave us feeling light-headed, nausea and it can disrupt sleep too if consumed in large quantities.
Coffee has varying effects on consumers depending on their genetics – if you have the gene that allows you to metabolise coffee effectively then you may be able to drink a couple of cups a day and feel quite good from it. If you lack the gene, one cup can be enough to make you feel sick, exhausted and give you a foggy head.
Coffee is drunk by many because it ‘provide you with a burst of energy’ but it is in fact not the coffee that provides that surge in energy.
The coffee facilities the body’s own energy sources and causes the body to create energy at a faster rate – seems good so far?
The problem comes after the initial spurt, you guessed it, what goes up must come down, and in this case its your energy.
So after your first coffee your energy will drop, leaving you craving that next one, or get you reaching for the nearest carbohydrate snack to counteract your dip in energy.
Relying on caffeine to get you through the day is far from ideal, once rid of caffeine (it takes around 3 weeks to be fully excreted) your body will be able to control the production of energy if you provide it with a healthy diet and plenty of water.
Coffee has the strongest effect on our body, compared to other caffeine containing drinks so try swapping your coffee for a cup of green tea or a matcha green latte.
Better still replace it with a caffeine-free alternative such as chicory root coffee, herbal teas, turmeric milk or a raw cacao drink.
Remember, our bodies were created to function best without the addition of stimulants; most of our learning now is on how to remove things from our diet to allow our body to get back to a state of natural wellbeing.
What else can I do?
If you really can’t face giving up your daily coffee, you love the taste and the state of alertness and concentration that it brings you then try following these simple tips to ensure you reap the benefits of coffee without the side effects:
- Always drink your coffee with food. Drinking it on its own causes a spike in your blood sugar levels and it is metabolised very quickly which can lead to feelings of nausea. Best enjoyed with a full-fat breakfast such as avocado with eggs or coconut cream smoothie.
- Upgrade your coffee by swapping the conventional milk for a tablespoon of coconut oil and optional addition of a slice of organic butter (needs blending). The fat from the oil slows the absorption of the caffeine and therefore provides a longer lasting lift in energy.
- After your coffee drink a large glass of water to rehydrate. Coffee is a diuretic and therefore naturally dehydrates the body.
- Drink your coffee before 12pm to ensure it has the least effect possible on your sleep.
- Stick to one really good quality coffee per day, don’t just drink it out of habit, swap that second and third cup for a caffeine-free alternative or green tea if you are struggling to reduce your caffeine intake.