The function and efficiency of our modern world is often said to be built upon coffee. If we were to break down the issue, we’d discover that although the tantalizing liquid has become synonymous with productivity, what everyone really means is “energy.” Sometimes it can be difficult to function after twitter-filled nights and Mad Men-binging days, and yet sometimes we may want an alternative to coffee, whether for a flavor switch-up or a different, more mellowed kind of buzz (or perhaps even a caffeine-free “buzz”). Or, maybe coffee makes you jittery — these choices will help wake you up without that sort of rush!  Whatever your motivation, here are five great alternatives to coffee that will help make your day just as productive due to the range of energy-boosting nutrients and flavors you can find in these great drinks:

1. Green Tea

Green tea is a seasoned health pro’s go-to drink when looking for a little metabolism galvanizer, overall health booster, or a bit of extra energy. Though it does contain caffeine, by brewing yourself, you’re sure to avoid the sugary junk that’s built in to many other drinks, which is the energy industry’s most major offense. Look out for big name brands like Lipton who are capable of junking up even the best of things – get your green tea in organic leaf-form and steep it yourself. Throw some ice cubes in on a hot day for maximum refreshment. You’ll be buzzing through all of your work in no time!

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2. Carob Powder

One of the only foods that legitimately provides the cut-loose without the crash, carob is the health nut’s chocolate fix. Complete with the fiber and devoid of the fat that one would find in its more processed counterpart, you’ll see about a million carob-infused recipes amongst finer health blogs; the stuff is a veritable super-food. One tablespoon of the unsweetened powder has 25 calories, so feel free to gorge. It blends amazingly with soy milk and thicker fruits like bananas.

3. Green Juice/Smoothies

Both leafy and solid green vegetables are low on the glycemic index, which means you’ll digest them gradually throughout the day, providing sustained energy and energizing nutrient intake. Green juice can be the busy person’s best buddy as 10 minutes of juicing in the morning equals not only a fuller stomach throughout the day, but also plenty left over for that 3 o’clock tummy growl. For help getting started with juicing, check out our great guide here. And check out all of our smoothie ideas here!

4. Peppermint Tea

Despite the fact that peppermint tea is caffeine-free, it’s guaranteed to give you a boost when you need it most. The smell itself will boost all of your senses! The herb is almost magical, well-known for minimizing nausea, stomach pain, and droopy eyes. Complete with a historically rich background, remnants of this tea have been found in ancient Egyptian pyramids, and the Romans grew it in their gardens especially for digestive purposes. Peppermint and stevia is one of my favorite mixtures, both invigorating and refreshing. It’s also very affordable!

5. Teeccino

If you’re desperate for that unique coffee flavor, brands like Teeccino will be your savior; it was created to imitate coffee specifically via a cocktail of herbs, nuts, fruit, and grains. Though it contains barley, after it’s brewed, it is considered gluten-free. It’s sold in natural food markets throughout the U.S. and is perfect for those looking for a mental boost without the caffeine burst you may get from coffee.

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What are your favorite energy-boosting coffee alternative drinks? We’d love to know your picks!

Image Source: Maletsky/Creative Commons

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