Are you one of those people who just can’t function without their first cup of coffee? Maybe you need tea throughout the day or regularly take caffeine pills to stay alert. There are all sorts of caffeinated options to help give you a boost throughout the day, but that doesn’t mean they’re good for you.
In fact, too much caffeine is bad for you. It’s been linked to high-stress levels, heart problems, and other health issues. It’s time to find a good alternative to get your energy boosts without reaching for anything caffeinated.
You can do it! I have seven caffeine alternatives to help you get healthy energy boosts. Are you ready to use them to your advantage?
Wait, Why Stop Drinking Coffee?
Caffeine isn’t completely banned from your diet, but you do want to limit the amount that you drink. Coffee, in particular, is high in caffeine, but you can also get it from black and green tea and sodas.
Caffeine is a stimulant, which is why it’s commonly used to help boost your energy levels. It sends a message to the brain that helps to boost the metabolism and increase your heart rate. In a small amount, this can be good for you. In fact, low levels of caffeine have been linked to good heart health and improved weight loss efforts.
The danger is when you drink too much. Studies have shown that you want to keep your coffee intake to less than four cups a day. You can reach this limit before you know it, especially with the size of some mugs now! What you think is two cups could turn out to be four or five because of the size of your favorite mug.
Too much caffeine leads to high levels of stress and bad cardiovascular health. You can start to get the shakes, suffer from headaches, and feel nauseous throughout the day. Once you get a caffeine high, your body uses up the energy, and you get a sudden dip. You can end up feeling more tired than you did before you drank the extra cup of coffee.
So, you want to look at healthier alternatives for your energy boosts. The seven here will give you more sustained energy boosts to get you through the day.
Get a Cold Shower
If you have access to a shower, now is the time to use it. You want to get the heat turned down, making it as cold as you can stand.
Cold showers have been linked to various health benefits. One of those is to improve your alertness and feeling of being awake. While your colleagues will experience a sudden crash after drinking their coffees, you’ll have an energy boost that will sustain you throughout the rest of the day.
How do cold showers work so effectively? They force you to intake more oxygen when you breathe. The first time you step into a cold shower, it feels like your chest tightens. Your body just can’t seem to get the air in that it needs. But eventually, you start taking in deep breaths, and you’re able to bring in more oxygen.
But you also increase your oxidative stress. In small levels, this is good for you. Small increases in oxidative stress help to increase your heart rate. Your newly improved oxygenated blood will pass around your body further and quicker. Your brain gets more oxygen throughout the day to stay away.
And let’s not forget that heat will make you drowsy. Your body feels more relaxed, which means you get the hormones to tell you it’s time to sleep. When you’re cold, you constantly feel alerted because your muscles don’t relax as much.
While you can’t grab a cold shower at work, you can start your day with it. Cut out your first cup of coffee and avoid being a zombie when you first get into work.
Chew Some Gum
Instead of reaching for the caffeine, why not reach for the gum? Not only does this help to keep you more awake, but you also remain more focused than you would with coffee.
Studies have shown that people who chew gum are more alert than those who don’t. And you only need to chew for 15 minutes to get the full benefits.
When you chew gum your heart rate increases.This helps to spread more blood to your brain, giving you the boost that the cold shower would have done. You not only feel more alert, but you can focus more, and you’ll feel happier. More oxygen helps to boost the levels of happy hormones circulating your body.
Gum chewing also helps to boost the autonomic nervous system. This means your whole body ends up on high alert. You can channel that into your work, focusing more on the tasks at hand.
If you choose mint flavored gum, you’ll also offer more benefits to your nerve fibers. Mint is naturally boosting for the body. It feels like getting a splash of cold water without actually leaving your desk.
Unless you are constantly in the public eye, most bosses won’t complain about you chewing gum at your desk. Just don’t pop it or chew with your mouth open. That’s just rude and annoying to your colleagues.
To protect your teeth, opt for sugar-free gum!
Add Lighter Colors to Your Office Space
It’s time to get rid of the blue around your office. Opt for brighter, summery colors instead. Red, orange, and yellows are the best for increasing your alertness.
Studies have shown that colors will affect the way you think and feel. Blues are commonly associated with sadness or calmness. Your brain gets the message that it’s time to relax, even if you’re at work and need to be on high alert.
Reds and oranges help to brighten the mood. You’re happier within yourself, and your brain gets the message to be on higher alert.
However, you will need to find a balance. Reds can cause some irritability. Opt for yellows and oranges instead to help create a more summery atmosphere in the office.
Your workplace may have a hot desk policy. Opt for colored items that you can easily move. Have a yellow coffee mug that you always used or have a picture of a sunflower that you just pop up and take down right away. If you can put personal effects around your desk or office space, think about the colors of photo frames.
Use Upbeat Music
It’s time to find your favorite songs and play them throughout the day. If you’re in an office with colleagues, make sure you have your iPod and grab a pair of headphones. There is nothing more annoying than listening to someone else’s music while you’re trying to work. Alternatively, you can all have an agreed radio station that plays a mixture of music you will all like.
Music has been known to make you drive faster and run faster. Singing along certain creates that effect. Studies show that singing along and listening to fast music boosts your energy levels. You decrease the amount of tension you feel, helping to eliminate stress levels in the body.
If this doesn’t quite work out, then get up and dance along. Shake off the negative energy and give yourself a boost. The movement will get the blood flowing back into your extremities and boost your circulation to your brain.
This moves us only our fifth tip.
Do Some Desk Exercises
One of the best things you can do to get an energy boost is exercise. This does initially sound counter-intuitive, right? After all, doing exercise will use up some of the energy that you have.
Well, while it uses up some energy, it also boosts the amount of oxygen passing through your body. You increase your heart rate, which means your blood circulation is vastly improved. Oxygen gets back into your brain, while you boost the circulation through to your extremities.
At the same time, exercise releases happy hormones. You get rid of the stress that causes the dip in the emotions. You will find that the brain can keep you alert for longer.
Plus, exercises at work is good for your overall health. We spend far too much time sitting. You’re chained to a desk for eight hours of the day, which means your metabolism slows down and your muscles don’t get the workout they need. When you do more exercise, you build muscle, and that boosts your metabolism—meaning you have more energy.
Every hour, get up and shake off the sitting. Do a few squats, try out desk pushups, or just jump up and down on the spot. Your colleagues may think you’re weird, but you’ll be far more productive throughout the day. Your body will also thank you for the break.
If you can’t do exercises, then focus on stretching. This offers some similar benefits, as it encourages more blood flow to your muscles.
Switch to Lemon Water Instead of Coffee
Sometimes you just want to drink something. Well, if you can’t have coffee what can you have? It’s time to reach for the lemon water.
Lemon water offers far more benefits than boosting energy. It helps to improve your digestion, increases hydration, reduces sugar cravings, and helps to create a more alkaline-leveled body. But how exactly does it help to boost your energy levels?
First of all, the benefits are in the scent. Lemons smell refreshing. They help to reduce the stress levels, so you automatically get a boost of happy hormones from the brain. These happy hormones help to make you feel more alert and rejuvenated.
At the same time, the lemon water will improve your digestion. They help to get rid of your breakfast or lunch, increasing your metabolism slightly. Your immune system within your digestion system will work more effectively. Getting rid of more waste will help to avoid discomfort, pain, and fatigue.
If you are suffering from a cold, you want to drink more lemon water than you usually would. The vitamin C in lemons will help to improve your immune system’s efforts against the cold. You’ll feel more alert and ready for action.
It’s very easy to make lemon water. Just add a few slices to your normal water. You can also squeeze lemon juice in and add some grated lemon zest. Add a little mint in too for more benefits.
Opt for Peppermint Tea Instead
If you want something warm, especially in the winter, you’ll want to opt for peppermint tea. This is a herbal tea, eliminating all caffeine from the drink. Of course, the thought of drinking tea can help you trick yourself into believing you’re getting something caffeinated.
We’ve already touched on the benefits of mint in the suggestion of chewing gum. Mint is refreshing and revitalizing. It’s almost like you’ve splashed cold water on your face, giving you an instant boost.
Peppermint tea more specifically targets your nerves. It helps to give them a boost, which sends a signal directly to your brain. Your whole body gets a message that you are more awake and alert than ever before. Your eyes will be more focused, and you’ll find you have more concentration.
The use of peppermint tea will also help to improve your digestion. By getting rid of the sluggish issues within your digestive system, you boost your overall feeling of being tired.
Get Your Energy Boost without the Caffeine
It’s time to make a change to how you get your boosts of energy throughout the day. It will be tempting to get more caffeine into your system, but it isn’t that good for you. You need to focus on healthier alternatives.
The seven above are suitable for all different lifestyles and needs. Cold showers are great if you have access to them when you need the energy boost. Otherwise, you want to do more exercise, chew gum, and switch to lemon water or peppermint tea.