It's the start to a new day and you've already found yourself reaching for another cup of coffee to survive the long day at work. Other than a hearty and wholesome breakfast, an energy-boosting drink is also great to lift your spirits and help you stay awake.
Here are nine healthy drinks, besides coffee, to help you get through your workday.
Kombucha is a fermented drink brewed with tea, sugar and a symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast (also known as SCOBY). It contains organic acids, vitamins, amino acids and probiotics.
Not only does it improve your immune system by supporting a healthy gut, the vitamin B in it will also give you an energy boost – perfect for lethargic mornings. Its fizziness makes it a great substitute for those who love sodas.
This rich and creamy blend is made from black tea, milk and spices like cinnamon and cardamom. It is not only great to start your mornings with, but is also a perfect pick-me-up to snap out of your afternoon slump.
The caffeine from the black tea will give you a boost while the sweet and savoury spices are sure to give you a jolt of energy to stay awake. Plus, chai has a creamy texture that’s similar to your favourite white coffee.
3. Lemon water
This is an inexpensive and fuss-free option that works well. The antioxidants in lemon water can improve your complexion – allowing you to look and feel more rejuvenated without the caffeine crash.
It also contains pectin, a type of starch commonly found in fruits and vegetables, to keep you full for longer so you won’t be reaching for snacks before lunchtime.
4. Pomegranate juice
Unlike other fruit juices, pomegranate juice will not cause a spike in your blood sugar levels. According to a study published in an international journal, Nutrition Research, there was no significant increase in the blood sugar levels of diabetic patients who drank pomegranate juice over two weeks.
This makes the sweet and tangy juice perfect for your mornings as it will not leave you craving more sugary stuff or feeling sluggish by afternoon. Bonus: Its high antioxidant levels means it’s also good for your complexion.
5. Sparkling water
Carbonated water is a great way to jazz up regular still water. Add a spritz of lemon or lime for more flavour. Slices of orange and cucumber or mint leaves are also great additions to your fizzy water.
Staying hydrated keeps your energy levels high – you will feel less sleepy and more alert. It’s also fun to play around with the different ingredients you can add to your water.
This can be a quick fix for both your breakfast and morning drink. For instance, a smoothie with half an avocado is filled with healthy fats, fibre and protein. The rich and creamy avocado smoothie is super satisfying and will keep you energised for the morning. Dairy-free green smoothies made from fresh fruits and dark, leafy greens like kale will also send your energy levels through the roof.
Smoothies are a great way to fulfill part of your daily fruit and vegetable requirements. The vitamins in it will also be able to improve your mental state in the mornings, helping you to focus better and be more productive at work.
7. Wheatgrass juice
You can get wheatgrass juice by mixing wheatgrass powder with water or purchasing ready-made ones at Chinese medical stores. According to a study published in the Journal of Functional Foods in Health and Disease, wheatgrass is able to provide a healthy energy boost, and comes with anti-inflammatory and anti-ageing properties.
A source of chlorophyll, it’s jam-packed with minerals and vitamins. And great news for those watching your waistlines – wheatgrass is a natural hunger suppressant, allowing you to stay full and energised for long periods of time.
8. Coconut water
This refreshing, hydrating drink is perfect for Singapore’s sweltering heat that makes it easy for us to get dehydrated. The sweet and nutty flavours of coconut water go well together.
It is also rich in minerals, making it a great alternative to sugar-laden sports drinks. If you’re buying bottled coconut water from the supermarket, be sure to check out the ingredient list to ensure there’s no added sugar or flavouring.
9. Green tea
Besides coffee, tea also makes a good energy-booster. Tea releases caffeine into your body more slowly than coffee, allowing you to feel more relaxed and focused. This will help you avoid the jitters you get from coffee, especially if you are very sensitive to caffeine.
A great choice is green tea – it contains L-theanine, an amino acid that will help you concentrate. It’s also proven to be able to prevent cancer and boost metabolism. Here are six reasons to start drinking green tea.
This article was originally published in Shape.