Did you know that Americans are drinking coffee at a higher rate than ever before?
Approximately 64% of U.S. adults enjoy a cup of java every day.
This is for good reason. Coffee offers that robust, nutty flavor and that surge of energy many of us can’t live without.
However, reaching for caffeine right after that alarm clock blares doesn’t have to be your daily ritual.
If you’re looking for ways to boost energy without caffeine, there are actually tons of alternatives.
Keep reading to learn more about how you can get that morning zing without a mocha in hand!
Exercise has long been touted as the solution for gaining that natural body high. It may sound counterintuitive, but getting a good sweat in can send your energy levels soaring.
A simple cardio workout promotes blood flow to your muscles, improving cardiovascular health and ensuring delivery of those nutrients your body needs.
Regular exercise can also reduce fatigue over time, helping your body become more efficient in the way it regulates blood sugar levels and burns fat.
Workouts can also flood your body with endorphins, those “feel good” hormones that keep you grinning and energized throughout the day.
Consider starting your day with a morning workout. If your commute won’t make room for this, squeeze in a micro workout in the afternoon, or visit the gym after work.
Even doing a few pushups on a work break can help you reclaim your natural energy.
2. Sleep Sufficiently
This may seem obvious, but sleep really is somewhat of a magic pill when it comes to maintaining homeostasis. Our body requires regular, healthy sleep cycles to restore, repair, and realign its tissues and chemistry.
How much sleep is sufficient? Most adults need at least six hours, preferably eight, a night.
What’s more, your sleep should also be healthy. If you’re tossing and turning, you’ll likely wake less rested.
To get the sleep you need to wake up bright-eyed and energized, try to avoid consuming caffeine after 1 P.M. Alcohol can also inhibit sleep cycles, and the same goes for carb-heavy diets.
3. Harness the Power of the Power Nap
Power naps are, well, powerful when it comes to maintaining high energy levels. Instead of reaching for an espresso when your eyelids start drooping, grab a pillow and nap.
Power naps should occur ideally between 1 and 4 PM, and they should last between ten and thirty minutes. You may be tempted to snooze longer, but doing so can actually make you feel groggier upon waking.
These naps can help you make up for sleep deficits (see prior point). They can also stimulate brain activity, improve creative thinking, and, most importantly, reset our energy levels.
Studies actually indicate that napping is far better than caffeine, in terms of what it can do for memory retention and alertness!
4. Consume Raw Cacao
If you’ve nursed a coffee habit, you may be accustomed to deriving energy from beverages. Instead of turning your coffee maker on, however, open up a container of raw cacao.
Raw cacao–not to be confused with a rote chocolate bar–is packed full of phenylethylamine, a chemical known to promote alertness.
It is also rich with antioxidants, which can help stabilize your immune system.
Make sure you purchase 100% raw cacao. Some packages may come with added sugar, which isn’t always great for energy levels.
Try blending raw cacao into smoothies or even making some homemade hot chocolate.
5. Try Herbal Supplements
A wide range of herbs and plants have energy-promoting properties. The good news about these herbs is that they are caffeine-free!
Maca root, for example, is a Peruvian plant–entirely sans caffeine–reputed to boost stamina and energy levels. You can consume maca in supplement form or as a powder (a great addition to smoothies).
Magnesium supplements can also help manage healthy sleep cycles.
Before you start regularly taking herbal supplements, be sure to confer with a medical practitioner ahead of time. Some may have adverse effects, especially if you are currently taking other prescription medication.
6. Drink More Water
It’s vital to consume sufficient water every day. Doing so can actually limit your perceived “need” for caffeine, as water is a natural energizer.
Dehydration can actually lead to fatigue, as insufficient water levels in the body can inhibit oxygen’s capacity to travel to your brain. Your body has to work harder when it is dehydrated to convey enough oxygen to your cells.
Water is also vital for boosting your metabolism, enabling you to process nutrients efficiently.
How much water should you have every day? In general, eight eight-ounce glasses of water is advised. However, you are always encouraged to have more, especially if you live in dryer climates.
7. Wake Up Positive
Our thoughts can greatly influence our capacity to stay alert and focused throughout the day. If you wake up in a cloud of negative thoughts, these can impact your ability to maintain energy levels.
Before you get out of bed, embrace positive thinking. Immerse yourself in what is currently bringing you joy or what you are looking forward to.
Train your brain to follow these tracks of optimism to generate that extra bounce in your step.
Or try out these happiness-boosting foods!
8. Limit Alcohol
Alcohol consumption can impact your ability to get healthy, sufficient sleep. It can also lead to grogginess the following day (or even days).
If you are keen to wake up energized, go easy on the alcohol the night before. If you do consume alcohol, hydrate as you do, ideally matching each alcoholic drink with one or two glasses of water.
Meditation enables anyone to cultivate the art of being still, but it is so much more than that! Meditating even for five minutes can lower blood pressure, alleviate depression, and mediate stress.
As stress and depression can contribute to feelings of fatigue, a brief meditation session can be vital for giving you an added energy boost.
10. Eat More Superfoods
Superfoods are food items dense with nutrients that we need for optimum health. Consuming more of these superfoods, particularly those rich in fiber, can work wonders for your energy levels.
Try replacing processed foods, sugars, and fats in your diet with superfoods, those less likely to spike blood sugar levels (and lead to energy lulls).
Boost Energy Without Caffeine
These are just a few tips designed to help you boost energy without caffeine.
Are you still coveting coffee but wish to be mindful of your health? Check out this post about whether or not coffee is healthy or unhealthy for you!