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Whether you're cutting back on caffeine because it stokes your anxiety, or you just want to mix up your morning game, there are a lot of alternative ways to boost your energy in the a.m. We asked some of the country's top R.D.s to share their go-to energy-boosting hacks—no coffee necessary:
1. Carve out "elimination time."
"What people don’t talk about as much, which is super important, is carving out bathroom elimination time. If you release, you feel lighter and think more creatively all day! Most people rush around and don’t have as complete bowel movements as a result, or even delay them, which can really sap your energy throughout the day."
2. Drink a chocolate "milkshake."
"As a dietitian, it's in my DNA to try and 'healthify' otherwise unhealthy foods, so I've been making adult chocolate milk—one of my favorite childhood treats—in the mornings. I simply blend a frozen banana, unsweetened almond milk, a tablespoon of cocoa powder, cinnamon, vegan chocolate protein powder, and a large handful of watercress microgreens together! It tastes like a milkshake, but it's loaded with vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber that give me tons of energy."
3. Write down your goals for the day.
"Even if it's just a few quick moments, I always take time to write down a few goals for the day in my journal, along with a few things I'm grateful for, to get into a positive, focused mindset for the day ahead. I also have a few affirmations I write down each day as well and will also write down the dream I just had or thoughts I woke up with. If I'm being honest with myself, I've been in this habit longer than I can even remember—I used to get in trouble in grade school for writing during class in the morning—so I feel totally off and not fully awake if I ever have a day where I don't get to do that morning check-in! Clearing out mental clutter helps me get out of that morning fog and feel more present as I step into the day. I find that when I jump into the day with a bunch of stuff on my mind, I feel like I'm moving in slow motion and more prone to distraction."
4. Make a green smoothie.
"My favorite thing to drink in the morning to wake up is the Stripped Green Smoothie. It serves as a base smoothie that I can add plant-based proteins or other fruits or veggies in if I want. It's loaded with vitamins, minerals, and has many health benefits because of ingredients such as turmeric, cinnamon, parsley, apples, celery, and more. It gives me a great boost in energy and mood!"
5. Eat with the seasons.
"My breakfast routine follows the seasons—summer is all about mango smoothie bowls topped with homemade granola (so easy to make), and my winter breakfast is a savory oatmeal with a poached egg. It helps energize my body to get foods filled with nutrients—I really notice a difference in how I feel all day long."
6. Drink turmeric.
"For the morning, my favorite drink is the Goldyn Glow Energy turmeric blend! It has maca, which is super energizing; ginger; and cinnamon, in addition to turmeric, and it's super nourishing and delicious. I love the anti-inflammatory and hormone-balancing qualities of the turmeric and adaptogens, and its zesty flavor always wakes me up, no caffeine necessary!"
7. Exercise—with water!
"My favorite way to wake up in the morning is to do some type of quick exercise with a big bottle of ice water. Just a 20-minute walk, run, or strength-training session is enough to totally wake me up and get rid of brain fog. The water is a must, too—16 to 24 ounces in the morning (at whatever temperature you prefer; I just love it ice-cold!) is necessary to hydrate the body, flush out toxins, and get your metabolism and energy going for the day."
Ready to learn more about how you can keep your brain healthy, no matter your age? Register now for our FREE Functional Nutrition Webinar with Dr. Mark Hyman, where you’ll learn how to make diet and lifestyle modifications right now for better brain health!