Yes, you can rise and shine sans your morning cup of coffee. We asked a sleep specialist and naturopath how.
We asked sleep specialist Reut Gruber and naturopath Ashley Kowalski how to start your day without un café. Below, five ways to do so.
1. Get moving
Morning exercise gets blood flowing, revving up your brain and boosting your energy. So when you return from your morning run, you'll want to reach for water rather than coffee.
2. Choose green tea instead
Although it contains caffeine, green tea clocks in with much less of it than coffee. Even better? It's teeming with antioxidants (which help increase immune strength, boost metabolism and protect from DNA damage), so you can get your caffeine and enjoy health benefits, too.
3. Practise good sleep hygiene
This means setting a bedtime and sticking to it, getting a full eight hours of slumber, avoiding the bright lights of electronics before you say goodnight, and saving your bedroom for rest and intimacy.
4. Bring up your blood sugar
Morning sluggishness might not reflect a lack of caffeine but, instead, a dip in blood sugar from fasting overnight. A good breakfast helps. Get some whole grains, healthy fats and high protein—and, as always, avoid refined sugars.
Energy fuel: Balance your blood sugar with our nourishing overnight oats.
5. Look into the light
Dark mornings are both a drag and a detriment to your ability to wake up. Exposing yourself to bright light helps—but not your standard 60-watt bulb. Invest in a light-therapy box (with at least 10,000 lux) and sit in front of it for 30 to 40 minutes, maybe while eating brekkie. If you can't be still for that long in the morning, look online for a light visor that'll grant you the freedom to move around.
Light therapy may also benefit those who suffer from seasonal affective disorder due to diminishing daylight in autumn and winter.