The way we start our mornings really impacts how we feel for the rest of the day. Have you ever heard the phrase ‘woke up on the wrong side of bed’? With these cold, dark and rainy winter mornings, this phrase for me hasn’t rang truer. Sometimes the idea of getting out of our warm bed and facing the world seems almost impossible, leaving us just a few minutes to spare, rushing and panicking, looking for our keys that were in our hands all along, with slice of toast dangling precariously from our mouths. Sometimes when we start our days off this way, it feels almost impossible to snap out of stress mode. These are the days we really just want to crawl back into bed...
But! I may just have the solution. For me, the best remedy for those lazy-lie in’s and ‘5 more minutes’, was creating a simple morning routine that I look forward to. My most enjoyable move, was switching my morning coffee to a soothing, mind and body boosting hot chocolate.
So why could switching coffee for hot chocolate be a positive change?
Well, I’m certainly not saying to ditch the coffee all together. I still love a good cup of coffee from time to time, but, since gradually cutting down and making the switch, I’ve really noticed a real difference in my energy levels and mood! Since switching out a cup a day, I find myself feeling more relaxed, centred, and ready to take on the day. Which got me wondering, why might this be?
Your natural rhythm
Studies suggest that drinking coffee first thing in the morning can actually have a negative effect on our energy levels and mood. This is because the coffee interferes with our natural hormonal cycle, called our circadian rhythm. This cycle is responsible for waking you up and keeping you alert throughout the day, and helping you relax into sleep on an evening with the release of different hormones.
In the morning, our body releases Cortisol, this is the hormone that helps us feel alert and ready for the day. Drinking coffee first thing can disrupt our cycle and our bodies tolerance to these hormones, which is the culprit for that good old late morning crash…
Allowing your body to wake up to its own natural rhythm can ensure you maintain a consistent level of energy throughout the day. The high caffeine content in coffee is also known to raise blood pressure, brain activity, alertness and in some cases, induce feelings of anxiety. Of course, everybody is different, some people can’t sleep at all after drinking coffee 10 hours earlier, and some people can have coffee right before bed and have sweet dreams! It totally depends.
The benefits of hot chocolate in the morning
Chocolate contains less caffeine than coffee whilst alternatively being full of mind and body benefits. Dark Chocolate is packed full of feel-good nutrients that boost our bodies natural happiness neurotransmitters like Serotonin and Dopamine, this can lead to us feeling relaxed, joyful, clear headed and euphoric. Plus, all of the nutritional benefits give our body a big shot of natural energy! But, if you’re still not convinced, or ‘on the fence’, here’s a little visual 😊
So, taking a few minutes in the morning to breathe in the aromas, sit, nourish yourself, gather your thoughts and have a moment of you time before you whisk the kids off to school or rush to work, might be really beneficial. But don’t take my word for it, give it a go! 😊