You know what they say, a cup of coffee a day keeps the doctor away…right? Fine, that isn’t necessarily how that popular saying goes, but with approximately 2 billion coffee drinkers daily in the world it might as well be.
We’re all trying to find new ways to live a healthier lifestyle. From adopting a stricter diet to going to the gym on a more frequent basis, there are plenty of things you can do to accomplish these goals. But did you know that you could get a few steps closer to your healthy milestones just by changing up the type of coffee you drink?
While coffee is a staple of the morning routine, and many individuals can’t imagine themselves living without it, it isn’t always the healthiest thing to put into the body. Fortunately, its versatile nature makes it incredibly customizable to suit dietary preferences. Here are some must-know ways to make your coffee healthier so that you can craft the perfect drink for your needs.
1) Switch to Lower Caffeine Blends
If there’s any reason to drink coffee every day other than its taste, it’s the caffeine it provides us. A strong stimulant, this chemical activates the brain and central nervous system to provide a temporary boost of energy. Coffee is one of the leading sources of caffeine, which is why it’s among the best ways to wake you up in the morning.
However, caffeine is still classified as a drug, and ingesting too much can cause some individuals to develop headaches, nausea, or upset stomachs throughout their day. So if you’re noticing that your current coffee blend is making you sick, try a blend with a lower quantity of caffeine. Decaf coffee contains significantly fewer grams of caffeine than standard brews. As such, you can still experience the energy perks you need without the symptom crash later.
2) Remove the sugar
This is probably going to be one of the hardest things to do, especially if you have the habit of adding sugar to your coffee or ordering your usual caramel latte. Unfortunately, sugar is an extremely harmful ingredient that wreaks havoc on your health and adds unwanted inches to your waistline! So if you’ve been trying to shed some pounds, you could be indirectly sabotaging yourself by adding those packets of sugar in your coffee.
By ditching the sugar or flavored syrups (which are basically laden with sugar as well), you will not only be cutting out unnecessary calories but also protecting your body from these harmful consequences.
3) Drink coffee after your meal
Most people probably reach out for a coffee first thing after waking up and before having breakfast. If this is what you do, then you should know that it’s better to get some food in your system prior to chugging down that cup of coffee. This is because drinking coffee on an empty stomach can cause or aggravate several health problems – such as anxiety or gastrointestinal issues.
Having coffee on an empty stomach can also cause a drop in blood sugar, which will then result in more sugar cravings. And yes, this means there’s a higher chance that you will overindulge in those sweet treats. By having food in your system, your stomach can then keep those cravings at bay by modulating this blood sugar response.
4) Option for organic coffee
As conventional coffee is sprayed with pesticides, there’s no doubt that healthier coffee comes in the form of organic choices. By making a trip to your local health food store, you will be able to find out what your organic options are – trust us, it’s not as hard to find as you think.
5) Grind your own coffee beans
How fresh do you think your coffee is? Like all other kinds of food, coffee beans also get rancid when their inner contents are exposed to moisture and oxygen. To ensure maximum freshness, it is best to grind your own coffee beans. By doing so, you will then be able to ensure that you’re reaping all the nutritional benefits that your cup of coffee has to offer – since it’s freshly ground.
6) Listen to your body
At the end of the day, the best thing you can do is to listen to what your body is telling you. As everyone reacts differently to coffee, it is important to take note of what it does to your body. For example, does drinking it in the late afternoon cause you to stay up all night and not get a good night’s sleep? If so, then it helps to make the necessary adjustments – such as drinking your coffee earlier, or perhaps having a non-caffeinated drink instead when it’s past a certain time.
7) Drink black coffee
Black coffee, including espresso, has less than 10 calories per 8-ounce cup. If you want to cut calories and keep your coffee as healthy as possible, consider ordering a regular brew without any added ingredients. Black coffee can be bitter, but over time your taste buds will adapt to the bold flavor. If you’re new to black coffee, here’s a helpful beginner’s guide to get you through the initial introduction from Manual Coffee Brewing.
8) Avoid drinking on an empty stomach
Drinking coffee on an empty stomach is an unhealthy habit that can lead to various health risks, like a damaged stomach lining and increased anxiety. Luckily, you can prevent these potential risks by making sure to eat breakfast before enjoying your morning cuppa. That being said, it’s important not to drink coffee excessively throughout the day, and avoid drinking it past 2 p.m. so that you don’t interrupt your sleeping schedule.