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Top Ways To Make Your Coffee Or Tea Habit Healthier
Coffee: it’s one of the first things we think about in the morning. Without coffee, we are grumpy and sour, but once we have that first cup of steaming Joe, we are all about the smiley face.
This article isn’t here to tell you to dump your coffee habit. Although some people do because they feel that they are healthier without it, studies show that some coffee is actually good for you. “Some” coffee does not mean 3 pots, nor does it mean 4 of those “grande” coffees you get from the Big Bucks coffee shops. “Some” coffee means 3 cups per day or less. For those of you who have been visiting Big Bucks coffee for too long to remember, one cup is 8 ounces. Check it out with a measuring cup so you will have a visual in your mind to compare it to.
Now that you have your 8 ounce cup of coffee in hand, or tea if that is more to your taste, let’s take a look at the top ways you can make that cup of tea or coffee even healthier so you can truly sit back and enjoy it with no guilt involved.
1. Think Organic
Conventional coffee plants are one of the most heavily sprayed crops around. A typical coffee farmer will use about 250 pounds of pesticides and chemical fertilizers per acre. You are consuming just a bit of pesticide residue with every little sip. This buildup of toxins contributes to a wide variety of health issues including miscarriages in women and cancer.
Yes, organic coffee beans cost a bit more, but how much is your overall health worth exactly?
2. Buy Whole Beans and Grind Them Yourself
Like every natural thing on earth, once the insides of things are exposed to oxygen and moisture, they begin to break down and quickly spoil. If you want a good idea about how this works, cut open an apple and watch how fast that beautiful white interior turns brown. Exposure to air also kills off antioxidants, which are one of the healthy benefits of coffee. Buy whole beans and grind them at home in the morning when you make your pot of coffee for the best wholesome coffee experience. Find out top reasons to avoid the most popular American coffee shop.
3. Ditch the Dairy
Many people add milk to their coffee and while it might seem harmless, even just a splash of conventional cow’s milk give you a splash of antibiotics, GMOs, pesticides, and growth hormones. That does not sound very appetizing, now does it?
Especially when there are terrific alternatives. Make your coffee (or tea) a healthier drink by skipping the milk and going for real cream or organic raw milk. Or you could also go with a nut or seed milk, such as almond milk or hemp seed milk and ditch the diary altogether.
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4. Don’t Go the Flavored Creamer Route
Although those sound so tempting (Hazelnut creamer anyone?) they aren’t creamer or milk at all. Those flavored creamers in those little individual cups are nothing more than hydrogenated vegetable oil (which means GMO corn oil or GMO soybean oil), high fructose corn syrup, and artificial flavors. There are ways to get these flavors without all the health defeating chemicals, keep reading to find out how.
5. Add Spices
This is a great way to get the health benefits of certain spices and flavor up your coffee at the same time. Cinnamon, for example, is a great flavor enhancer for coffee and it can help control your blood sugar levels. Nutmeg is another one that stimulates and regulates your digestive tract. Simply put a teaspoon or so of these spices in the bottom of your coffee pot before you turn on the coffee maker. Don’t be afraid to experiment!
6. Skip the Refined Sugars
You already know that sugar is not good for you, and those artificial sweeteners are even worse, but when it comes to our beloved morning cup of coffee, we tell ourselves that little white lie and say “Just this little bit won’t hurt.” The problem with sugar is the more you eat, the more you want. To make things worse, sugar today often comes from GMO sugar beets and this can lead to problems with the liver as well as gastrointestinal problems.
Use a low glycemic, more natural sugar such as coconut sugar, date sugar, real maple sugar or even raw, organic honey. All of these are a better choice than regular white, refined table sugar.
7. Tea Lovers Use Lemon
Many people love to add milk to their tea but as we already discussed above, dairy is really not a good option. Skip the milk and add lemon instead! Lemon in your herbal tea boosts the healthy properties of whatever type of tea you are drinking and adds some powerful liver cleansing compounds. Lemons are also loaded with healthy antioxidants so feel free to squeeze a little sunshine into that cup.
8. Keep an Eye on Your Tea Timer
Tea contains healthy antioxidants called catechins, but over brewing actually lowers these super powerful antioxidants, so only brew for between three to five minutes and no more. Green tea and white tea should be steeped in not quite boiling water to avoid killing their antioxidant power.
9. Neutralize Some of the Negative Effects
Although we all love that caffeine rush in the mornings that helps to get us going, that caffeine rush artificially stimulates our adrenal glands and, over time, can contribute to adrenal fatigue. You can offset some of the depletion of your adrenal glands by using some adaptogenic herbs. Consider putting a bit of reishi mushroom, or other type of medicinal mushrooms, in your coffee.
SEE ALSO: The Shocking Truth about Teas from India
10. Counterbalance the Acidity
Coffee is very high in acids, which won’t be a problem for you if you eat a mainly alkaline diet, but if you consume a fair amount of grains or meat, then your diet is overly acidic. To offset the acid in coffee, try brewing it with some spring water or some other source of pure alkaline water. You might also want to consider adding some grass fed butter or maca to your coffee to raise the pH level to a more alkaline level.