The Biggest Detox Question: What About My Morning Coffee?

5 AM LatteLots and lots and lots of people love their morning cup ‘o Joe. Like 90% of Americans. (I may or may not be in that 90%.) AND, if you’re going to truly detox your body, you need to skip the java.

A true detox is coffee-free because coffee (and it’s high caffeine content) decreases nutrient absorption (which is EEEsential for an effective detox), dulls the tastebuds making detox food (and all food) less satisfying, makes the body more acidic, taxes the detox organs (the lovely liver and the kidneys), fires up your adrenal gland in a not-so-pretty detox way, and often contains other naturopath no-no’s like sugar and creamer. Brutal, right?!

BUT!! Eventhough doing the 7-Day Detox starting on Monday *should* be coffee and caffeine-free, and you *should* take the next 3 days to wean off of caffeine, you can still do a world of detox good without a world of caffeine withdrawal headaches if you have to cheat ever so slightly…

Instead of coffee, have caffeinated tea (in order of detox diet supremacy preference):

1. White Tea: With the least caffeine and the most antioxidants, do it up. Also known as the supersonic tea supertonic. My favorite is Tazo’s Cucumber White. It’s no Joe, but it’s certainly someone!

2. Green Tea: It’s got a mediocre amount of caffeine so you shouldn’t get that knife-in-the-back-of-the-head headache (I may or may not know about that first-hand), but it also has a ton of healthy antioxidants, and tastes gross with milk & sugar (a good thing!). If you don’t like green tea, try ROASTED green tea like the Haiku brand found at Whole Foods Market. Tastes like a campfire!

3.Green Tea Latte: The one at Starbucks is amazing, but even a tall size without syrup has 31 grams of sugar. Might as well have coffee with coffeemate! Make your own:


Homemade Green Tea Latte
Makes 1 serving

1 Tbsp green tea matcha powder* (extra credit if it’s unsweetened)
8 ounces unsweetened soymilk
1/2 tsp stevia, or 1 tsp sugar (if you must)

Whisk ingredients together over medium-high heat until bubbly.

*The sweet matcha powder has 12g sugar per tablespoon, which is ok as long as you use unsweetened non-dairy milk

And there you have it! THREE ways to not NOT detox because you fear the lack of caffeine. Day 1 is the hardest — have the Green Tea Latte on that day and then sip through some plain green and white tea after that. See you in a few days!

15 thoughts on “The Biggest Detox Question: What About My Morning Coffee?

    • Jen Reilly says:

      Hey Lezah!

      Too much processed soy is definitely not recommended, and some oncologists recommend that women who have had estrogen receptor positive breast cancer limit soy consumption to 2 servings per day. And, soy makes the blood more acidic than other beans. BUT, in its less processed form (tempeh, edamame, miso, even tofu and unsweetened soymilk), soy can be great at preventing cancer and promoting heart health. Having said that, however, no one NEEDS soy to have a healthy, balanced plant-based diet. There are plenty of non-dairy, non-soy alternatives out there 🙂 XOXO – Jen

  1. Karen G says:

    Hi Jen!
    Don’t hate me – I’m in the “other 10%” I did a month long cleanse last fall, and after it was over I really didn’t feel the need to go back to my morning caffeine. So, lucky me. I do however, crave hot or warm things in the am, especially in the cold winter time. My favorite brand is the R******c of T**. Got my family drinking (and loving it, too) RofT’s green teas, many come decaf. They also have alot of white teas, well they have alot of tea, period.
    I was a really big stevia hater, then discovered Nunatural’s variety of no alcohol, liquid. Family could not tell the difference, it tastes that good without any funky after taste.

    For myself, I think the hardest part is to stick with the plan while my family will be eating something else. They are receptive to new foods, but a detox week for them is most likely not happening.

    I totally agree that coffee does change your tastebuds, you just have to try one or two of the alternatives, then compare. I still like coffee now, but I don’t have to HAVE it to get my day started.

    Thanks for another informative and helpful post.:-)

    Karen G

    • Jen Reilly says:

      Hey Karen! Good points and great tips! I’ll be sure to try (and then talk all about) the Nunatural stevia. We use a touch of Truvia baking blend sometimes, but there’s such a fine line with getting the right flavor an killing it with the bitter aftertaste. I usually go without!

      As for dealing with family foods during the detox week, I have a similar challenge with my 3 kids ages 3-7—they love the smoothies, snacks, and soups, but will only eat small bits of salad, so I make them pasta or a sandwich for those meals (and the wheat/flour/gluten is usually what I miss the most!). It may be helpful to make a big pot of soup for you to eat for more than 1 dinner so you’re not always making 2 different meals. Or, a simple detox dinner is a large salad with mostly greens (so no major chopping), diced avocado, raw sunflower seeds, beans, and oil, vinegar & salt. If you feel like you’re going to be tempted by what the family is eating, eat your meal first and sip herbal tea with them while they eat.

      Best of luck this week and keep writing!


    • Jen Reilly says:

      Hi Barbara, I’ve “done the detox” and kept in coffee a few times. I definitely didn’t feel as energized as when I ditch the coffee completely or even do green tea lattes. xoxo

  2. celeste says:

    I haven’t given up the coffee and I don’t see any “bad” siden effects. Perhaps I am not getting the full benefit of the detox but at least I am not getting a killer headache . ÷

  3. Anz says:

    Hey all, what about drinking the coffee black – no cream or sugar? Surely, there are benefits to that. There’s so many different studies saying Black Coffee is ok and better for you since coffee beans do have medicinal purpose. People in the rural tribal areas in Asia and South America drink coffee black and function just fine. So can the same be true to someone who is following a good healthy balanced diet and drinking black coffee in a developed country?

    • Jen Reilly says:

      True that what goes IN the coffee can be super bad! I personally drink coffee (and LOVE it) every day. If you truly need to detox, it’s good to limit caffeine and especially coffee because of the acidity, but it doesn’t have to be for the rest of your life 🙂 Cheers! xo Jen

  4. Matchaccino says:

    Matcha has a good caffeine it is my new coffee not only i enjoyed the health benefits, i also enjoy how i can do with my matcha green tea powder. It boost my energy and keeps me going with my everyday activities.

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