6 Delicious Ways to Supercharge Your Morning Coffee for Increased Health, According to Nutritionists
If you’re like us, you can’t really start your day without a cup of coffee. The caffeine jolt gets us going, and helps us start our day alert and full of energy. We used to feel kind of guilty about drinking coffee every day, but it turns out that medical studies show coffee consumption may protect against neurodegenerative diseases and lower risk of liver disease. So now we don’t feel bad at all, but we did consider: Could we be getting more out of our morning coffee routine?
If there are ways of adding a boost to our coffee for added health or wellness benefits, it makes sense to take advantage of them, after all — especially when doing so can actually make our favorite morning brew even tastier. Luckily, this is very much the case — there are lots of ways we can supercharge our coffee. And the best part? Adding any of the following ingredients takes just seconds, so you’re making a healthful choice that doesn’t take you any extra time.
1. Spice it up
An easy way to supercharge coffee with minimal effort is to add a booster to your coffee grounds before you brew — one great option is a blend of cinnamon, turmeric, and black pepper. “You’ll get the hint of flavor in your cup of coffee while also getting an additional health benefit of the anti-inflammatory turmeric root and the blood sugar-stabilizing cinnamon,” says Jenna Stangland, MS, RDN, Team Dietitian for the Minnesota Timberwolves. It’s a great way to launch into your day, curb cravings, and feel ready to take on a workout. (Plus a touch of cinnamon in coffee makes it taste extra delicious.)
2. Stir in Further Food Collagen Peptides Powder
Collagen peptides are all the rage lately, and we totally get why: They can benefit the body in so many ways, from making hair and skin more vibrant and bright to even maintaining a healthy gut. But part of the beauty of this ingredient is that it can dissolve easily into warm liquids, which makes it a perfect addition to morning coffee.
Basically, if you want your coffee to be anti-aging as well as delicious, then you should supercharge with some collagen powder. Adding collagen peptides to your coffee can help relieve joint pain, prevent bone loss, and maintain the elasticity of your skin.
“Coffee is a healthful beverage by itself, and it can also be a great vehicle for adding additional nutrients that can boost your health and daily performance. Adding a scoop of grass-fed collagen peptide powder to your coffee can give your body the essential amino acids to build healthy bones, tendons, nails, hair, and teeth,” says Dr. Mark Iwanicki of New York Center for Innovative Medicine.
Our favorite part: Further Food Collagen Peptides Powder comes in delicious flavors like vanilla, chocolate, and hazelnut. So why not upgrade your morning coffee to a fancy café-style mocha — and get health benefits at the same time? Unflavored collagen peptides are ideal for the coffee purist — if you’re someone who always says “Coffee should taste like coffee!” then this is for you, because this unflavored collagen melts so easily into hot drinks and doesn’t taste like anything at all. But for those of us who like to mix up our morning brew a little bit, check out these delicious flavor options — they’re perfect for your morning cup. (Clean Plates readers get 15% off their first order, too — just use the code CP15.)
3. Add MCT oil
MCT oil is supercharged all on its own — and can add a serious boost to a morning coffee routine. “‘MCT’ stands for ‘medium chain triglyceride,’ which is a different shape of a fat that gets digested by the liver,” says Stangland, explaining that MCT oil can be converted to energy instead of being stored as fat. That means you have the caffeine to get your brain charged, and the MCT oil to provide the energy to the rest of your body. It’s also a great, healthier replacement for powdered creamers.
4. Sprinkle some cacao
We may be familiar with cocoa butter as an ingredient in our favorite body lotions, but it’s also a really healthy ingredient for our morning coffee. Naturally plant-based, cacao can have a relaxing impact that helps even out those caffeine jitters some people get while reinforcing its cognition-enhancing effects.
Cacao butter is another ingredient out there people may consider adding to their coffee to supercharge it, but unlike MCT oil, cacao butter does not contain the medium chain triglycerides. “As for antioxidant levels in cacao butter, it would be better to do a cacao powder that you mix in your grounds and get the antioxidants through brewing your coffee that way,” says Stangland.
5. Give mushrooms a go
A mushroom supplement that is made from dried adaptogenic mushrooms can be a nice addition to coffee. “The benefits may include anti-inflammatory effects, mood enhancement, and even immune support (depending on the varieties of mushrooms),” says Lauren Manaker, MS, RDN, LD. However, mushroom powder can also add a unique flavor to your coffee without added fat or sugar. While some people like it, others may want to add in some monkfruit and oat milk to cover up the taste a bit.
One great way to make adaptogenic mushrooms taste way better? The aforementioned Further Food Collagen Powder. Yup, you can supercharge your coffee in more than one way with this stuff: Their vanilla collagen powder contains tremella “beauty” mushroom for additional skin hydrating benefits; chocolate collagen powder contains reishi mushroom for mood and immune-boosting benefits; and their hazelnut collagen powder has lion’s mane mushrooms, which have been shown to boost cognition and reduce brain fog. What a serious win/win.
6. Melt in some coconut oil
Coconut oil is a great way to supercharge your morning coffee — it not only tastes really good, but is linked to a lot of health benefits as well. Coconut oil is a plant-based combination of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids which help promote weight loss and can work as a quick energy source and help sharpen focus. “Keto dieters will add coconut oil to their coffee and other beverages to improve their fat-burning rate,” says Trista Best, MPH, RD.
Boosting the immune system is one way that adding coconut oil can supercharge your coffee.
“Coconut oil contains lauric acid, which has antimicrobial, anti-fungal, and anti-microbial properties,” says Best. These characteristics make it helpful in protecting against viruses like the common cold and flu as well as more serious health conditions. Coconut oil in your coffee can also boost your body’s ability to absorb antioxidants and fat soluble vitamins, A, D, E, and K.
Read next: 7 Things You Might Not Know About Adaptogens