Racing to catch hectic deadlines but struggling to stay awake while you work? It’s cold outside and you’ve had endless cups of coffee as you work to make the deadline.
But too much caffeine can wreck havoc with both your mental and physical health. This has been established time and again by researchers and health practitioners.
So what is a human to do?
It’s simple: turn to alternatives to coffee. Yes, they exist. Yes, they work. Here are a few:
Also Read: Is Caffeine Driving You Nuts?
Remember Geet (from Jab We Met) frantically panting and saying“Ye soda shoda ek taraf hai, lekin paani ka kaam to sirf paani hi kar sakta hai”, in her customary delightful way? She wasn’t wrong after all.
Staying hydrated is the best way to avoid sluggishness and help the body function properly. This becomes even more important when you are pushing your body to clock in those extra hours.
Drink water every 30 minutes. This keeps the bladder full besides creating a subconscious urge to pee in you mind, helping you stay awake.Ankita Gupta Sehgal, Dietitian, Nutrition Matters, Delhi
Also Read: 7 Reasons Why You Must Drink More Water
2. Hot Chocolate
The theobromine in dark chocolate helps boost energy levels – just what you need when sleep gets the better of you. What’s more? It is low on caffeine and even known to promote mental alertness (thank flavanols).
According to a study published in the journal NeuroRegulation, dark chocolate can increase brain characteristics of attention – something that is crucial in keeping you awake at odd hours.
Hot chocolate is way more effective than coffee in keeping you awake. Since it is closer to being natural, it doesn’t acts as a weight gainer as well. Being rich in Vitamin B12, chocolate not only helps the digestive system but also helps in growth and brain function.Ankita Gupta Sehgal, Dietitian, Nutrition Matters, Delhi
3. Green Tea
Coffee might lead to an increased level of energy just when you think you need it the most. But it is short-lived and can leave you exhausted. Choose green tea instead as it is a healthier option. Just the right amount of caffeine to keep you up without adding unwanted calories. Though you will need 3 to 4 cups of green tea to get the same amount of caffeine.
The caffeine levels in green tea are low as compared to coffee. So, you get the right amount of caffeine to stay up without compromising on your health.Ankita Gupta Sehgal, Dietitian, Nutrition Matters, Delhi
Also Read: 4 Reasons Why Green Tea is Great for You
4. Black Tea
Black tea contains caffeine which stimulates your brain to stay awake but the quantity is way lesser than coffee. This makes black tea ideal to keep you up late.Ankita Gupta Sehgal, Dietitian, Nutrition Matters, Delhi
If nothing else works, get a little exercise, eat a diet with low-gylcemic foods, eat nuts and high fibre vegetables.
5. Apple Juice
Just the optimum amount of sugar and vitamins make apple juice a great beverage to keep sleep at bay.
Fresh apple contains fructose – the simplest form of sugar and enough carbohydrate – to stimulate the brain with slow but sustained formed of energy which keeps you going. This is anytime better than caffeine overdose.Ankita Gupta Sehgal, Dietitian, Nutrition Matters, Delhi
You can even choose to eat the whole fruit to fight sleep.