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Last modified on August 24th, 2020
Every morning when you wake up, do you reach for a cup of coffee first and foremost? If so, you aren’t alone. A hot cup of coffee is what gets many of us going with that jolt of caffeine, but did you know there are things you can add to your coffee to give it a boost?
Certain ingredients can be added to your coffee to help with both physical and mental health and help you more effectively tackle your day.
What’s important when you’re thinking about coffee add-ins to supercharge your morning brew is that you first choose options that work well for your individual needs.
Not everyone is going to benefit from having the same add-ins in their coffee.
Also, if you’re putting in a booster, make sure you clear it with your doctor or pharmacist first. This is true for any supplement, and even more important if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, have a pre-existing condition, or on any medicines.
With that being said, here is a list of our favorite add-ins to supercharge your coffee.
Ashwagandha is one of our favorite natural supplements. There have been health studies looking at the benefits in animals primarily, but researchers believe there is early evidence ashwagandha may be beneficial for certain types of cancers, as well as anxiety and Alzheimer’s.
Ashwagandha is sometimes called winter cherry or Indian ginseng, and it’s a shrub that grows in Africa and the Middle East, as well as India. Ashwagandha has a long history in Ayurvedic medicine, dating back in India thousands of years.
While there’s not a standard dosage of ashwagandha since it is a supplement, you might take doses of anywhere from 450 mg to 2 grams.
Some of the benefits of ashwagandha include:
- Anxiety: One of the main reasons people use this supplement and why you might consider adding ashwagandha to your coffee to supercharge it is because of its calming effects. The effects have even been compared to lorazepam, which is a prescription anxiety medicine. There was a study published in the journal Phytomedicine that found the herb did have the ability to reduce anxiety levels. What’s unique is that ashwagandha can still be something you use in the morning because people tend to say it makes them feel calm and focused, but not overly sleepy.
- Heart Health: Ashwagandha has potential heart-related health benefits, including to help with managing high blood pressure and high cholesterol. There was a human study published in the International Journal of Ayurveda Research that found it improved heart health by helping boost muscle strength and endurance.
- Cancer: A few studies have shown the potential of ashwagandha to stop cell growth with certain cancers. Early findings show this particular herbal supplement might help in the slowing of cancers of the prostate, kidney, lung, and breast.
- Inflammation and Pain: Inflammation is at the root of nearly all chronic illnesses, and inflammation can also cause pain. Ashwagandha is considered a pain reliever because it affects the nervous system, preventing pain signals from being sent. It’s also been touted as a potential treatment for rheumatoid arthritis.
Lion’s Mane Mushroom
Lion’s mane mushroom, as the name might imply, has a shaggy look like a lion’s mane when it grows.
Lion’s mane mushrooms can be used as a tea or consumed dried or cooked. Lion’s mane mushroom is also a popular health supplement.
When you have lion’s mane mushroom in your coffee, it can boost your brain, gut, and heart health. Some companies, such as Four Sigmatic, even offer lion’s mane mushroom coffee products, which they describe as offering “clean, focused energy.”
Some of the purported benefits of lion’s mane mushroom may include:
- Protect against dementia: As we age, our mental functioning may naturally decline, because it’s harder for our brain to form new connections. Some studies have shown lion’s mane mushroom has two compounds that can stimulate new brain cell growth. These compounds are called erinacines and hericenones. Studies in animals have also indicated lion’s mane might provide some protection against Alzheimer’s disease.
- Depression and anxiety: Lion’s mane may provide some relief from mild symptoms of anxiety and depression. There is some evidence anxiety and depression are linked to chronic inflammation, and animal research has uncovered the idea that lion’s mane mushroom has an anti-inflammatory effect which may in turn, help reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression at least in mice. Separate animal studies found lion’s mane helped in the regeneration of brain cells in the hippocampus, which is part of the brain responsible for our emotional responses. Researchers think that if you can improve the function of your hippocampus, it could potentially indicate where lion’s mane extracts can reduce behaviors that are anxious or depressive.
- Ulcer protection: If you suffer from ulcers, which are usually caused by either the overgrowth of the H.pylori bacteria or damage to the mucous layer of your stomach because of long-term NSAID use, you may benefit from supercharging your morning coffee with lion’s mane. Lion’s mane may help prevent the growth of H. pylori, and it can help prevent inflammation and tissue damage that may be linked to ulcers.
- Immune booster: Right now most of us are looking at ways we can provide our immune system all the support it needs. With the covid-19 pandemic still roaring on throughout the world, we want our immune systems to function as well as they can, and that’s, of course, true even when there isn’t a pandemic. Research on animals found that lion’s mane mushroom can increase the activity of the intestinal immune system. This is the system of our body responsible for protecting us from pathogens that enter our gut through either our nose or mouth.
A great way to supercharge your morning coffee and one that’s increasingly popular is adding collagen to it. Collagen is tasteless and can have a lot of benefits, so your morning coffee can be the perfect time to have it.
Collagen is the most abundant type of protein in all of our bodies, and its an essential part of the makeup of our connective tissues including our skin and muscles.
Some of the benefits of adding collagen to your coffee include:
- Skin hydration and elasticity: Most of us are looking for ways to make our skin look great and to slow the signs of aging. Collagen can boost your skin from the inside out. There are studies that have found collagen peptides and collagen supplements can reduce wrinkles and dryness. For example, in one particular study, a group of women who took a supplement with anywhere from 2.5 to 5 grams of collagen for eight weeks had less skin dryness and more skin elasticity than people who didn’t take it. There was another study that looked at women taking a collagen supplement for 12 weeks. They had improved hydration of their skin, and a reduction in wrinkle dept compared to the control group participants.
- Gut health: Some people add collagen to their coffee to improve the health of their gut. For example, there is anecdotal evidence suggesting collagen may be useful to help with leaky gut syndrome, which is when your intestines are too permeable.
- Weight loss: If you want to lose weight or even boost your muscle mass, supercharge your coffee with collagen. One reason that collagen powder in your morning coffee can help you lose weight is that it can help you feel full. It’s a clean protein with no additives or sweeteners. There was one study that looked at hunger hormones in 10 obese people and 12 people who were normal weight. Researchers found the intake of gelatin, which is derived from collagen, increased the satiety hormone. This means that the overweight study participants were more likely to stick to their diets to lose weight because their hunger was reduced.
- Can help you lose weight because collagen helps you feel full for longer
- Collagen added to your coffee may improve your gut health and help heal leaky gut
- Collagen powder can make your skin look more youthful and moisturized
- Collagen is the most abundant protein in our bodies
Mucuna pruriens is a supplement that’s great for supercharging your coffee, but a lot of people still don’t know much about it.
It’s called the magical bean in Ayurvedic medicine, and it’s been used for thousands of years. Another nickname for mucuna pruriens is the dopamine bean. Recent studies have shown indications that mucuna pruriens may help improve depression and sleep patterns, and could even reduce symptoms of Parkinson’s Disease.
Mucuna is a source of L-dopa, which is the precursor the body uses to make dopamine. Dopamine is a feel-good, mood-boosting neurotransmitter.
Some possible benefits of mucuna pruriens that make it a good addition to your cup of morning coffee include:
- Mucuna pruriens seeds have something called D-chiro-inositol. This is a plant component with the potential to help with symptoms of PCOS and diabetes.
- This was briefly touched on, but one of the biggest potential benefits of mucuna pruriens is the fact that it has natural L-dopa, which is a dopamine precursor. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter with a vital role in mood and mental functions, memory, and calming the nervous system. When you take mucuna pruriens it may help support your body’s natural production of dopamine, and L-dopa can cross the blood-brain barrier.
- Most of us have a cup of coffee to give us an energy boost for our workday and adding mucuna pruriens can further facilitate that. Mucuna pruriens is often called a natural form of Adderall because it can help boost your learning and reaction time. Also low levels of dopamine in essential cognitive areas of the brain can lead to a lack of motivation, which is often a symptom of depression. Supplementing with mucuna pruriens can help boost dopamine production, therefore potentially boosting motivation and focus.
- Contains a plant component that may help manage symptoms of PCOS and diabetes
- Mucuna pruriens is a precursor of the dopamine transmitter so it can boost mood and focus
- Mucuna pruriens is a natural energy-booster
- Since mucuna pruriens can help boost dopamine in certain areas of the brain, it may help improve motivation levels
The idea of adding fat to your coffee may sound crazy, but it can have some great health benefits. One product that’s perfect for adding to your coffee is BulletProof Brain Octane Oil.
When you add Brain Octane Oil to your coffee it can help give you a fast energy boost, because it converts to ketone energy. Ketone energy can be used by your brain faster than other types of fasts. Octane oil can also help balance your gut biome and it’s flavorless, so you won’t notice the addition.
Another way you can add healthy fats to your coffee is with a scoop of butter. If you add grass-fed butter to your coffee, you’re getting vitamins and antioxidants as well as omega-3s.
There’s something called Bulletproof Coffee which is increasingly popular, especially among people following the fat-blasting ketogenic diet.
Bulletproof Coffee combines Brain Octane oil, as well as grass-fed butter or ghee. You then blend it for around 30 seconds.
If you don’t want to add Brain Octane oil or butter, you can add coconut oil too.
- Provides a source of omega-3s which are essential for mental health and can help reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression
- Healthy fats added to your coffee can help you full fuller in the morning, aiding in weight loss
- Octane oil can help improve the health of your gut
- Brain octane oil converts to ketones to give you a boost of clean, fast energy
Experiment with Supercharging Your Coffee
The above suggestions can help you supercharge your coffee and give your mind and body a boost, and there are many other options you can add to your coffee for better health as well. Experiment a bit and find the combination that works for you.