7 Caffeine-Free Drinks for Energy
These oh-so-good smoothies and store-bought bevvies are ideal for a quick pick-me-up, without a crash
Even if you get enough sleep, eat well, and stay hydrated, some days you just need an extra boost-but could do without the jittery side effects of caffeine- or sugar-packed beverages. Try these easy-to-make and ready-made drinks for all the energy-boosting benefits without the potential crash.
This soymilk based energizer created by Susan M. Kleiner, Ph.D., author of Power Eating, 4th edition, gets its kick primarily from the protein. "The real benefits come from the (milk) protein which revs metabolism. The little bit of sugar gives your brain the fuel it needs wake up, and the nutmeg acts as a brain booster or stimulant to raise mood and lower anxiety."
Nutrition score per serving: 191 calories, 4g fat (1g saturated), 13g carbs, 24g protein, 1g fiber, 352mg calcium, 1mg iron, 198mg sodium
Wake Up from a Dream Smoothie
The protein from the milk in this smoothie increases energy by its metabolism-boosting effect, Kleiner says. "It's also rich in antioxidants like vitamin C and potassium, which supports nerve conduction and muscle contraction and enables you to think more clearly and move more easily."
Bonus: Cinnamon not only adds warm, sweet flavor, but this spice has also been shown to keep blood sugar levels in check by helping the body burn carbs for fuel.
Nutrition score per serving: 285 calories, 3g fat (0g saturated), 39g carbs, 28g protein, 3g fiber, 252mg calcium, 1mg iron, 167mg sodium
Coconut Black Tea Smoothie
The ground flaxseeds boost the fiber factor and the black tea gives a subtle kick, says Christine Avanti, R.D., author of Skinny Chicks Eat Real Food. "Tea contains an amino acid called L-theanine, which heightens alpha brain wave activity. This allows you to become alert yet calm simultaneously."
Nutrition score per serving: 256 calories, 11g fat (2g saturated), 12g carbs, 28g protein, 6g fiber, 52mg calcium, 1mg iron, 13mg sodium
This line of products provides energy in the form of healthy fats, Kleiner says. "They keep your cells healthy so that you're always maximizing your mind and body. They're also rich in antioxidants, a great source of fiber, provide a little protein, and only a small amount of sugar."
Nutrition score per serving (based on Raspberry Passion flavor): 120 calories, 4g fat (0g saturated), 20g carbs, 4g protein, 6g fiber, 100 mg calcium, 1.3 mg iron, 12mg sodium
Check out mammachia.com for more information and where to buy.
Part of the neuro line of beverages, neuro DAILY packs a powerful blend of vitamin D (1,000 IU) as well as vitamins A, C, E, selenium, and zinc in a tangerine-citrus drink. "It provides a natural way to support your immune system and improve overall wellness, which can increase energy and performance," Avanti says. "Vitamin D insufficiency is common and can lead to chronic fatigue." The recommended daily allowance for vitamin D is 600 IUs; at 1,000 IUs, neuro DAILY more than meets requirements.
Nutrition score per serving: 35 calories, 0g fat (0g saturated), 9g carbs, 0g protein, 0mg sodium
Check out drinkneuro.com for more information and where to buy.
Totally caffeine-free, Solixir's THINK functional beverage helps keep you mentally energized and engaged throughout the day. "All the ingredients work on stimulating and supporting the various systems in the brain," says Kleiner, founder of Solixir. "They support circulation for oxygen and nutrient transport, stimulate nerve conduction and energize mood and mental focus. It's also hydrating, which is critically important for mood, mental energy, and mental focus."
Nutrition score per serving: 50 calories, 0g fat (0g saturated), 13g carbs, 0g protein, 0mg sodium
Check out solixir.com for more information and where to buy.
XS Energy Drink
This energy drink gets its kick from added vitamin C and vitamin B, says Lisa DeFazio, M.S., R.D., celebrity nutritionist. "B vitamins are particularly effective at boosting energy levels."
Distributed exclusively by Amway, you can also purchase XS online at amway.com. Not all flavors are caffeine free, so be sure to stick with Cranberry Grape, Tropical Blast, and Wild Berry Blast.
Nutrition score per serving: 8 calories, 0g fat (0g saturated), 0g carbs, 1.5g protein, 15mg sodium