Healthier coffee alternatives

Tiffany Trent, Assistant Opinion Editor


For many college students coffee is a main food group. Whether you need to wake up for your morning lab, need a midday pick me up in between classes or pull an all night study session, coffee is a quick and easy way to ward off fatigue.

There are some downsides to coffee however, such as dependence and withdrawals as well as that inevitable energy crash. The good news is there are plenty of healthier coffee alternatives available.

A great coffee replacement is tea. Not only is tea tasty, it is rich with antioxidants that can lower the risks of heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Most teas contain caffeine to help you get through your day. Tea comes in several different varieties and flavors such as green, black, white, herbal, rooibos and darjeeling. You can have tea hot or iced. You can even make a tea latte simply by steeping your tea in hot milk.

Another benefit of tea is that it is very inexpensive. A typical box of tea at the grocery store costs only a couple dollars. Tea is also convenient for a busy lifestyle. It takes seconds to add a teabag to hot water. You can even stick some tea bags in your backpack and make tea wherever hot water is available, such as in the USU on campus.

Smoothies are another healthy option instead of coffee. They are delicious and filled with fruit and vegetables (if you choose) which are great immune system boosters. You can add protein powder or peanut butter to help build lean muscles and supply your body with nutrients to equip you for an active day. Smoothies with protein can even be a meal substitute if necessary. If you want to put in some caffiene just add some powdered vitamin B for additional energy.

Another coffee alternative is simple H2O. Water has so many health benefits. It’s good for your skin, it’s hydrating and refreshing and provides mild yet sustained energy. Try adding a lemon wedge in your water bottle for some extra flavor. Water is cheap (often free), has zero calories and can be consumed in large quantities.

Next time you want a caffeine fix, consider skipping the long lines and high prices at your local coffee shop and try something different. Your body will thank you.