How the Switch To Black Tea Changed My Life

Do you often find yourself struggling to get through the day? Do you sometimes find yourself choosing between your overall health and energy drinks? Well, I was in your shoes not too long ago — just a few weeks back, actually. Back then, I was an avid energy drinker. I’d find myself needing to drink one before, throughout and even after my study sessions, and I became addicted to the crisp, sweet taste. Although I’ve never struggled with my weight, I noticed the negative effects these sugar-rich drinks were having on my mental and heart health. It sometimes felt as if my heart was about to tear its way out of my chest, and I knew something had to change. I knew I had to ditch the drinks for good, and eventually, I did. Here’s how I ditched energy drinks for tea, and how you can too!

self-love Original Illustration by Gina Escandon for Her Campus Media

The first step was to make a promise to myself to never buy another energy drink ever again, no matter how tempting it gets. I know some of you struggle with self-made promises, but this is the biggest step you need to make to yourself, and most importantly, don’t break it!  Whenever I’m at the check-out line and see an energy drink smiling at me through the glass door of the mini-fridge, I think about how I’ll feel if I break that promise — sad, frustrated and disappointed in myself. Is it worth ruining all that progress for a temporary taste? No. Most of all, is it worth damaging your body for a quick refreshing drink? Absolutely not!

Now, since a lot of us rely on caffeine to get through the day and be productive, it’s important to choose a much healthier alternative. What’s the point of switching from one unhealthy option to an even unhealthier one? I decided to choose black tea for myself — not only is tea natural, but black tea has a little bit more caffeine than regular tea, which helps wake me up in the morning. I specifically chose Lipton Black Tea, but any brand of your choice works just fine too!

Since most of us prefer a little sweetness to our tea — hence why we loved those sugary energy drinks — it’s now time to think about our sweetener. I've always despised sugar since diabetes runs in my family and I view sugar as a villain, but in a world that seems to sneak a little bit of sugar in everything, I still sometimes find myself eating a donut or two. When choosing your sweetener, you can control how much sugar you’re using — if you plan to use sugar at all! Personally, I use Stevia. Stevia is extracted from the leaves of the stevia plant and is a sugar substitute. Not only is it a sugar substitute (no sugar, yay), but it's natural and tastes exactly like the real thing! We can’t control a lot of things in our lives, but at least we can control the sweetener in our tea.

Ever since my switch to black tea, I’ve noticed that I’m way less tired throughout the day, I don’t have any strange heart palpitations out of nowhere, and I feel much healthier and less bloated! On top of that, I find myself better able to focus on my assignments and online classes. Before, I’d get distracted and hop from Reddit to YouTube to Animal Crossing. Additionally, I no longer need to use sleep medicine to fall asleep and wake up feeling refreshed. Please keep in mind that these are my results and that everyone’s body is different. What works for me may not necessarily work for you, and if you feel strange, please go see your doctor. Hopefully these tips will help and encourage you to join the tea life!​