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:

matcha

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!

Pumpkin Spice Latte in Your Own Bitchin’ Kitchen

I could be Charles. I’ve already had and thoroughly enjoyed several Starbucks Pumpkin Spice Lattes this year (decaf, soy, no whip, SO good). Especially as a past Starbucks barista who got free drinks “for taste-testing” ’round the clock, it’s hard to justify spending too much cashola on a coffee drink–even the Pumpkin Spice Latte. So, I’ve created my own version–much cheaper, and highly more convenient if you have a craving while at home. And no espresso machine needed!

Pumpkin Spice Latte
Makes 1 12-ounce drink

6 ounces brewed double-strength coffee (leaded or unleaded, your choice)*
6 ounces vanilla non-dairy milk (I used soymilk)
1 Tbsp pumpkin butter or apple butter (or 1 Tbsp pumpkin purée plus 2 tsp sugar)
1/8 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or a dash of cinnamon plus a dash of nutmeg) 

Brew coffee. While coffee is brewing, heat milk, pumpkin butter or apple butter (or pumpkin purée plus sugar), and spice(s) in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir vigorously with a whisk until ingredients are evenly mixed and it starts to bubble. Pour coffee and milk mixture into a large mug. Pull out your laptop, turn on some jazz, sip the latte, and enjoy the moment. A true coffee shop experience!

Nutrition info per latte: 107 calories, 2.5 grams fat, 5 grams protein, 13 grams sugar, 225 mg calcium.

*1 cup in most coffee makers makes 4 ounces of coffee. Therefore, for 1 latte, brew 1 1/2 cups (6 ounces) using 3 scoops of ground coffee

Who’s ready for a homemade version of the Gingerbread Latte or the Peppermint Mocha? Stay tuned!

Coffee Consumption Lowers Risk of Skin Cancer

5 AM Latte

A new study from Harvard’s Nurses’ Health Study found that after examining the dietary habits of nearly 73,000 nurses from 1984 to 2008, women who consumed 3 or more cups of coffee per day had a 20% lower risk of developing Basal Cell Carcinoma (BCC), the most common form of skin cancer. Men had a 9% reduction in risk, and no connection was seen for either women or men for Squamous Cell Carcinoma (SCC) or the rare but potentially fatal melanoma.

Coffee’s protective effect appears to be related to the caffeine, so decaffeinated coffee showed no protective effect. While BCC is rarely fatal, there may be consequences of treatment, including disfigurement. Plus, developing any kind of cancer increases the risk for developing other cancers–in this case, other skin cancers, lymphoma, and testicular cancer. Read more about the research here.

Need a delicious way to enjoy your morning joe? Try this heavenly 5 AM Latte!