Hey guys! This blog post (& video) is all about caffeine as well as my top tips on cutting down on it, so if you are a coffee addict like I used to be, carry on reading!
To give you a bit of a background to caffeine, it’s a natural physical and mental stimulant as I’m sure you’ll know and it’s found in tea and coffee as well as chocolate, cola and energy drinks.
Although small amounts of caffeine are perfectly healthy, and if you have it before a workout in particular it can help to improve physical performance, having too much of it is not good thing.
Specifically too much caffeine (more than 4-5 cups of instant coffee a day), can:
- Impact on your mood; causing irritability
- Cause stomach upset
- Induce restlessness
- Create problems with sleeping
Another problem is that the more you have caffeine, the more that your body gets used to it, which is why the its effects wear off over time.
So if you you’re interested in cutting down on your caffeine intake, here are my top 3 tips!
TIPS ON CUTTING DOWN ON CAFFEINE
- 1) Get Enough Sleep – Question why you’re relying on caffeine so much & if it’s because you’re not getting enough sleep then sort this out first. Adults should aim for 7 to 8 hours of sleep a night and you should avoid drinking any drinks with caffeine for several hours before bed.
- 2) Look for caffeine free or lower caffeine containing drinks – As well as loving green tea which contains less caffeine than regular tea, I also love to drink Barleycup, which you may not have heard of before. Barleycup is a caffeine-free alternative to coffee and it’s made from roasted barley, rye and chicory root. It’s gluten-free (certified by Coeliac UK; for those of you who need to avoid gluten) as well as containing no added sugars and it contains just 10 calories per cup. It’s got a really mild taste, it smells amazing and you can enjoy Barleycup either on its own or with milk including soy, almond or rice milk (unsweetened is best!). As well as drinking it hot, one of my personal favourite ways of drinking it is as a caffeine-free iced mocha (scroll down for the recipe!).
- 3) Only have caffeine when you need it – whether it’s after the odd late night or before a workout, try to keep your intake to no more than 400 to 500mg a day (pregnant ladies should have no more than 200mg a day); a cup of instant coffee typically contains 100mg (nb there is more caffeine in coffees sold in coffee shops!) and a cup of tea contains 75mg. Also remember that exercise is great if you’re feeling tired as it helps to get your blood and oxygen pumping around your body; so it might be that all you need is a brisk 5 minute walk rather than another cup of coffee.
CAFFEINE FREE ICED ‘MOCHA’ RECIPE
So now that you’ve heard my top tips on cutting down on caffeine, here is a delicious recipe that I love to drink after work that I know won’t affect my sleep.. it’s a caffeine-free mocha recipe and to make it all you need to do is:
- Add a handful of iced-cubes to your blender along with 200ml of milk
- Add 1-2 tsp of Barleycup original which has been mixed with a dash of hot water and then topped up with cold water to make 100ml.
- You then want to add 1/2 a tsp of cinnamon and 1 tsp of cocoa powder and then your chosen sweetener.
- You want to blend it all up before serving as it is or over more ice before enjoying!
If I’m having this drink for breakfast then I add 1/2 a frozen banana and if it’s after a workout then I also add 1 scoop of vanilla whey protein which makes it taste really creamy.
I really hope you’ve enjoyed this biog post all about caffeine and my top tips on how to drink less of it. If you want more information about barley cup then you can check out their website as well as follow them on twitter.
*None of the links are affiliated. I do not promote products featured over others that are not featured. This video was filmed in collaboration with Barleycup, a drink which I have been enjoying for a few years now! Please read my disclaimer page for more information.