by Tiffany Tse for SHAPE.com
Good new for all the coffee lovers out there! New research suggests it may keep you healthy and cut your risk of dying early. But if you're not a fan, or are trying to cut back, we've rounded up some healthy, tasty alternatives for you. You don't have to sacrifice taste, caffeine, or your health! Read on for our five favorite ways to get energized--without the jitters:
Green tea1. Green tea: Can't make it through the morning without your daily java? Try brewing some green tea, which has slightly less caffeine than a cup of Joe but enough to give you a boost without any of the coffee jitters. The refreshing drink is also packed with health benefits, says Nadine Taylor, registered dietitian and author of Green Tea: The Natural Secret to a Healthier Life. "Catechins are powerful antioxidants and potent disease fighters that are found primarily in green tea," she says.
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Nutty smoothie2. Nutty smoothie: Nuts, which are high in protein and fiber, make a healthy afternoon snack, but they're also nourishing whipped into a smoothie . According to certified nutritionist Angela Pifer, smoothies made using ingredients like cashew milk, protein powder, and nut butter help elevate your blood sugar levels. "A 3 p.m. slump is not innate to us," Pifer says. "Since food gives us energy, it's more of a problem with our blood sugar dropping."
Reishi mushroom tea3. Reishi mushroom tea: You've devoured mushrooms enfolded in tasty omelets or sprinkled atop your favorite pastas, but if you're looking for a unique coffee alternative, try mushrooms in the form of tea. A staple in traditional Chinese medicine , the soft, flat reishi mushroom makes for one invigorating (and healthy) libation. Try combining 1/3 ounce of chopped or powdered reishi mushroom with 3 cups of water, then bringing the tea to a boil and simmering for 30 minutes before drinking in doses.
Chai tea4. Chai: Native to India, this soothing beverage is commonly made with rich black tea, milk, and a variety of spices, like cinnamon, ginger, or cardamom. A steaming hot mug of chai tea will help you get over an afternoon hump. An added bonus? Though you're automatically cutting your caffeine intake by drinking chai, the tea's smooth, creamy flavor tricks your mind into thinking that it's coffee.
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Lemon water5. Lemon water: Creamy coffee drinks offer an instant jolt of energy, but you may find yourself feeling sluggish as the caffeine wears off later in the afternoon. Sometimes, it's the simple things that will stimulate your senses. "I find that the best waker-upper is water with lemon zest and lemon juice," says Lisa Rinna, television host and author of Rinnavation: Getting Your Best Life Ever. She suggests adding the juice of half a lemon and a teaspoon of freshly grated zest to your H2O.
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by Tiffany Tse for SHAPE.com