During the cold winter months I dump a lot of hot drinks down my gullet. Tea, coffee, hot chocolate, cider – even egg nog! But sometimes the thought of all the sugar added to these drinks keeps me from indulging. To help get over my sugar guilt, I find ways to supercharge my coffee and tea drinks with added nutrients!
But isn’t tea already healthy?
You’re right. Most teas – though they may not be a superfood – don’t pull down your body like many hot drinks full of sugar.
Unless they are full of flavors (I’ve seen some that use artificial flavorings!) herbal teas are very healthy. Even a good cup of black tea is healthy and has less caffeine than a cup of coffee.
And unless your tea has dried fruit in it (I have a delicious homemade blend with dried apricots) there is no sugar.
What about coffee? you say.
Right, coffee is just coffee and it’s up to you what you add. But it has a substantial amount of caffeine. I just limit my coffee to before noon.
Healthier Drinks from the Start
Specifically, fluoride is used in processing conventional black tea. And coffee is one of the most heavily sprayed crops on the planet.
By choosing organic, Fair Trade wisely sourced coffee and tea you can know you are consuming a healthier drink from the start.
For a super healthy instant coffee option, I love my collagen coffee with hyaluronic acid. It helps boost brain function and focus from non-caffeine sources!
Make Your Own Coffee and Tea Drinks
And if I happen to be in town when our very-limited-hours coffee shop is open, I will stop there instead. I love supporting a small, local business.
But grabbing a drink on the go is never as healthy as making your own at home.
When you make your own drink, you know exactly how much of what kind of sugar you are adding, what flavors and what kind of milk or cream. And you can supercharge your coffee and tea to your heart’s content.
My Favorite Coffee and Tea Drinks to Make at Home
At the top of my list for homemade drinks is coffee. I make a cup in my Chemex and enjoy it every single day.
Second on my list is hot chocolate. I enjoy a cup some afternoons or evenings during the winter.
Third is Mama Natural’s pumpkin spice latte. You can make a single serving or a Crock Pot full! I love that it has real pumpkin in it. I served it recently when I had friends over and the kids loved it! Good thing there isn’t a ton of coffee in this recipe.
Fourth comes Chai. I got a delicious recipe from my friend which I make with part maple syrup and part stevia. This Spiced Chai recipe isn’t my friend’s recipe but it’s similar.
8 Ways to Supercharge Your Coffee and Tea
1. Use honey or maple syrup instead of sugar. And cut back slowly. Even though these are natural sweeteners they still require insulin to be released. Enjoy a little less sweetener in your drink each day.
I fell in love with maple syrup in my coffee the summer I lived in Vermont. Every morning after the cows were milked we would dump some fresh cream and syrup in our cups of strong coffee and have our meeting to set the day. Maple syrup and coffee were meant to be together.
2. Sweeten teas with stevia or a stevia blend. Coffee and stevia don’t do well together! Do you have a favorite cider recipe? Try using part or all stevia to sweeten. Stevia pairs well with fruit flavors.
3. Add collagen. Collagen stirs right into any hot drink and adds protein to your drink. It is also packed with a ton of amino acids. It is similar to gelatin, just more processed. And it doesn’t require any prepping to easily dissolve.
4. Stir in gelatin. Gelatin is what makes Jello firm. If you buy plain, unsweetened, unflavored gelatin it is very beneficial for joints, skin and tendons. Along with adding protein gelatin helps heal the gut.
To add gelatin to your drink: Put 1/4 cup of cold water in a small jar. [I use a
baby food jar.] Pour a teaspoon of gelatin in the jar and let it sit for at least 10 minutes. After the gelatin softens (like the filling of a wet disposable diaper) it can be stirred into any drink. I keep the jar of softened gelatin in the fridge and scoop out some to stir in every hot drink.
You want to buy a bone broth gelatin. A mainstream nutritionist I’ve trusted for years recommended a brand of gelatin so I bought it. Only to be disappointed when I read the ingredients and it says “Bovine hide gelatin.” Gelatin made from bones is much more beneficial in helping the muscle and skeletal systems. Once I have this “skin gelatin” gone, I will buy this kind from Pure Proteins that is made from beef bones!
5. Use raw milk or cream. I enjoy cream in my coffee. But not the ultra-high pasteurized nasty cream that seems to rule the grocery store shelves! If I need cream in large amounts I will buy (non-ultra-high-pasteurized) cream. Otherwise I can just skim some off my gallon of raw milk. I like adding milk to my tea, as well. Cream just seems a bit heavy for tea.
6. Add whey protein. Whey protein adds double the protein to your drink as collagen does. Plus it makes it a bit creamy. I personally use whey for the protein benefit and collagen for the amino acids benefit.
7. Bulletproof your coffee or tea. Bulletproof drinks are all the rage now so you can easily find a recipe that suits you. Essentially it is adding a bunch of healthy fats to your drink and this serves as a meal replacement. But it’s a great way to supercharge your coffee and tea.
I’ve tried adding coconut oil and butter to my coffee but the flavor was too much for me. But I have to say, making a hot bulletproof drink in the blender produces the most wonderfully frothy and silky drink ever! Just experiment and find flavors that work for you. Ghee will taste different than butter and there are flavorless coconut oils available now.
8. A pinch of sea salt. Not only does a small pinch of quality sea salt round out the flavor of your drink but it provides your body with electrolytes and plays a major roll in preventing dehydration and fluid retention. I know this sounds like everything salt is accused of, but that is the difference between generic table salt and quality sea salt.
Also, salt takes some bitterness out of stevia if you choose to sweeten with stevia.
9. Easy healthy creamer. For a quick, shelf stable creamer that includes grass-fed butter, MCT oil and no added sugar, grab this powdered creamer.
Go Supercharge Your Coffee and Tea!
Now I’m not saying you should combine all eight of these supercharging suggestions into one drink! Not unless you are up for an adventure!
Start out by changing one or two of your coffee and tea habits and go from there. Maybe you really can’t stand the flavor or texture of one thing, but another sounds good. Go for it.
These are just a few suggestions for ways to supercharge your coffee and tea. Enjoy your daily and seasonal indulgences with a good dose of health that you probably won’t even taste!