The New Year is underway, which means it’s time to nail down some long-term goals for the next twelve months. Or that’s the idea, anyway. Statistics show that nearly 80 percent of us will break our New Year’s resolutions by February. But can a cup of coffee save your New Year’s resolutions from the dustbin of history?
We already know drinking black coffee puts some proven health benefits into your morning routine. But you can also add some flavor to your morning coffee without the heavy calories or artificial preservatives. Here are seven healthy ways to add flavor to your coffee while keeping your New Year’s resolutions on track.
Try it with: Cool Cafe Blues
Looking to ditch all those packets of sugar while indulging your sweet tooth? Go with the healthy coffee alternative that’s as sweet as, well, honey.
Raw honey is the star of countless old wives’ tale and folk remedies. The sticky sweet stuff is rich in antioxidants to keep your cells strong and healthy. Raw honey also helps prevent chronic diseases like heart disease from taking root. Its immune system-boosting benefits, namely acting as a natural antiseptic against nasty bacteria and fungi, make raw honey a great companion to traditional cold and flu medicines.
Raw honey does a great job as a cough suppressant. It’s also a handy cure for the common cold’s brother-in-law, the sore throat. So feel free to stock up before the New Year dawns, but remember: unpasteurized honey is the way to go. Pasteurization makes for prettier honey and increases its shelf life, but the necessary heat cooks off all that nutritious yeast. Check the bottle or jar to make sure you’re getting the good stuff, and then you’re good to go.
Try it with: Sweetheart Blend
A cinnamon stick is great for the #aesthetic, but cinnamon powder puts your coffee on another level. Besides the peppy flavor and aroma, cinnamon helps lower blood sugar and get your cholesterol in check. A spoonful of cinnamon can even fight tooth decay and bad breath.
Health gurus have long celebrated cinnamon powder for its anti-inflammatory properties. Cinnamon can also help battle long-term health problems like diabetes and fatty liver disease. In the short term, Cinnamon is great for warding off infections and seasonal bugs. Consider the common cold dashed.
Try it with: Santa’s White Christmas
It’s not a solid, not yet a liquid, but definitely a powerful superfood. Welcome to the wonderful world of blackstrap molasses.
Blackstrap molasses packs copper, magnesium, potassium, calcium, iron and more goodies to boost your overall health. Its high levels of iron and calcium help strengthen bones and boost energy throughout the day.
Blackstrap molasses is made by boiling down juices from the sugar cane plant. It’s not as sugary as original recipe molasses, but if you’re aching for something sweet in your coffee, then make it nutritious with a dollop of this delicious preserve. No mess, no fuss — just syrupy goodness in your mug.
Try it with: Sweet Vanilla Bean
It’s the other white milk! Not to be confused with coconut water, coconut milk is made from the white meat inside your favorite brown, fuzzy fruit. It packs the flavor, vitamins, and minerals of dairy without the animal protein or fat. Coconut milk is also less dense than regular milk, allowing your coffee’s unique flavor and body to shine.
One of coconut milk’s most prized health benefits is thermogenesis. That’s not a James Cameron film: it’s the creation of body heat through the likes of healthy eating and exercise. Increased thermogenesis can mean a higher metabolism, which can help promote weight loss. Coconut milk can also increase insulin sensitivity. Insulin is a crucial hormone for breaking down glucose, which keeps your blood sugar at a healthy level.
Try it with: Creamy Buttery Caramel
Whoever said the lactose intolerant can’t indulge in some creamy confections? No cholesterol or saturated fats, no animal proteins – just a delicious way to add more flavor to your morning coffee.
The health benefits you’ll get from cashew milk depend on how you obtain it. Store-bought cashew milk is often boosted with vitamins D, A, B-12 and calcium. The percentages of minerals and other good stuff vary by brand. Homemade cashew milk, on the other hand, gives you a rich source of vitamin K, magnesium and iron. No matter where or how you bottle it, cashew milk will give your morning mug a (healthy!) pop of flavor.
Try it with: Barnie’s Cafe Blend
They say a spoonful of sugar helps the medicine go down. A spoonful of delicious peppermint, however, adds flavor AND health benefits to your morning cup.
Peppermint extract is a tasty way to perk up your coffee without pouring on unwanted calories. It adds a splash of minty freshness that can help ease indigestion, tension headaches and (of course) bad breath. Need to flush out those clogged sinuses? Or how does fighting off the common cold sound? Try a little peppermint into your coffee. You might be deliciously surprised at the results.
Try it with: Cinnamon Macadamia Nut
The pixie dust of the coffee world, cocoa powder trades milk chocolate’s creamy texture for a bevy of heart benefits.
Sprinkling a tablespoon of this superfood in your morning mug can help lower your blood pressure and improve blood flow. Cocoa powder is loaded with minerals like iron, magnesium, and zinc to help keep your body healthy and strong. Like milk chocolate, cocoa powder can also boost your endorphin and serotonin levels to help improve your mood.
Plus, you know: chocolate in your coffee. What’s not to love?