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Coffee has always been a great pick-me-up. Its caffeine is always supercharged enough to make you wake up from the slumber that you wish you had taken more advantage of. But, in my opinion, one of the largest downfalls of coffee is its ability to get me constipated very quickly. And because of this, I tend to avoid drinking coffee as much as I need it. So, I decided to start looking for alternatives to coffee that still have caffeine properties. Here are my top 5 alternatives to coffee, and their caffeine properties. I hope one of them will pique your interest and you’ll have a new morning pick-me-up. 

1. Matcha Tea

Matcha tea is a type of green tea that is made by crumbling the leaves of the Camellia Sinensis plant into thin powder. There is a more concentrated source of antioxidants in this powder than in a normal teabag, specifically epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG). EGCG is a compound that is helpful in reducing inflammation and helps prevent heart and brain disease. This can reduce your risk of high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. Matcha tea does have less caffeine than coffee, but due to its bitter taste, it still can lift your heavy eyelids.

I normally like to buy a packet of Matcha powder from Trader Joe or ShopRite and place it in a mug, with a teaspoon of honey on the powder. Then, after heating some water, I pour it over the powder and mix it until the powder has all dissolved. Based on how I’m feeling, I like to add more honey to make it sweeter.

2.  Golden Milk

Golden milk is a common caffeine- free substitute for coffee that is normally very popular in South Asain countries. It has a lot of strong spices such as ginger, cinnamon, turmeric, and black pepper. Due to the amount of spices in the drink, the mixture can have anti-inflammatory properties as well as help your body absorb the chemical curcumin and fat.

I have only ever had it once, but it can be quite strong, so I tend to be a bit lenient on adding the spices. In a saucepan, add 1 cup of whole milk along with ½ teaspoon of ground turmeric, ¼ cinnamon, 1/8 teaspoon of ground ginger and 1/8 teaspoon of black pepper. I added ¼ teaspoon of sugar too in order to sweeten it. Based on how it tastes, you can add more honey to sweeten it a bit more.

3. Lemon Water

Lemon water is a quite common caffeine-free and calorie-free way to start the day. It has a great amount of vitamin C too, which can protect your skin from sun damage. It also helps create collagen for your skin to tighten and stop from sagging. Along with its many antioxidants, it is a very healthy alternative to coffee.

I normally like to have it as tea in the morning, but you can also have it cold if you like. I cut about two slices of lemon and then add warm up water. I normally add a few drizzles of honey to make it sweeter. Not only does this drink quite soothing for the morning, but it’s also good for when you have a sore throat.

4. Chai Tea

Chai tea is a type of black tea that can help improve mental alertness. It still has powerful antioxidant properties, which along with its health benefits, can lower the risk of heart disease. It has less caffeine than coffee, so you can enjoy a few more cups without the after effects.

I love chai tea. It often has a certain kick depending on what you put in it. I normally like to buy the Twinings Chai Tea bags and soak them in hot water for about 3 minutes. Then I add nutmeg, cinnamon, and honey as I see fit.  If I make it for my siblings, I switch out the honey for sugar in order to make it sweeter faster.

5. Yerba Mate

Yerba Mate is another tea alternative to coffee that has quite a similar amount of caffeine as an average cup of coffee. It’s an herbal tea that is loaded with antioxidants, minerals, and vitamins that help strengthen your iron, calcium, and vitamins C and E.

I normally like to buy Guayaki Organic Traditional Yerba Mate Tea from Target and steep in water for about 5 minutes before removing it. The flavor is already strong enough so I just like to add small drizzles of honey to sweeten the flavor.


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Amandine Soho

UWindsor '24

Amandine is a second year student majoring in Forensics and Criminology, with a minor in Communication, Media and Film. In her spare time, she loves talking about everything and nothing, watching TV shows and movies, writing fictitious stories and eating all types of food (except black licorice). She doesn't know how but she hopes to inspire someone one day.
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