Good morning: herbal drinks for energy

On a mission to feel better first thing, Cordelia Fellowes has been speaking to the experts. Today, she shares the best herbal drinks for energy. If you’re looking for a more buoyant start to the day, this is for you… 

In today’s article, Cordelia Fellowes speaks to a herbalist, who gives a selection of herbal drinks to help boost her in the morning

Following a period where my one-year-old daughter kindly woke us up between 4 and 5.30am every morning, I began to research alternative (and ideally more effective) ways to energise myself in the morning. By alternative I mean something other than coffee and sugary spread on toast. It’s not just that I wanted to be healthier, I was also finding that coffee really wasn’t working, in fact it often left me feeling more tired.

So I spoke to Sara Rooney, a fully qualified herbalist who divides her time between her practices in Brighton and Central Portugal. She has been working with herbal medicine for ten years and is herself a mother-of-one, with another on the way.

“Herbs are a natural and energising way to start the day; they contain an important variety of nutrients and phytochemicals that can stimulate both the body and the mind. The additional benefit is that you will not get the mid-morning energy crash that is commonly encountered with caffeinated drinks, that makes you reach for yet another caffeinated drink!

Recipes for Herbal Drinks…

Hibiscus (hibiscus sabdariffa), lemongrass (cymbopogen citratus) and ginger (zingiber officinalis) tea: a revitalising and energising morning drink to increase circulation and is packed full of anti-oxidants.

Gingko (gingko biloba): improves energy flow by increasing ATP, which in turn improves mental function. Perfect for those that feel mentally drained.

Lemon balm (melissa officinalis): a gentle refreshing start to the day, traditionally used to lift the mood and has a pleasant, fresh lemony taste.

Maca powder: a Peruvian root used traditionally to increase stamina and energy levels. Add a spoonful of this to morning smoothies, yoghurt or porridge, for an energising natural boost. It also is a great hormone normaliser and female tonic.

Another gentle way to wake yourself up, is to place essential oils such as grapefruit and lemongrass in an oil diffuser/burner upon waking and it will fill the house with an uplifting and energising fragrance.”

If you’re interested in more of Sara’s natural recipes and remedies, or would like a consultation (she does them by Skype as well), check out her website.

And before I go, here’s a personal favourite of mine: one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar mixed with the juice of half a lemon, a pinch of cayenne pepper, a pinch of turmeric and topped up with warm water. It’s incredibly good for your liver and therefore just about everything else.

Next in this series, Cordelia gets advice from a yoga teacher about the perfect morning yoga sequence. Keep your eyes peeled…

Are herbal drinks the best way to start the day? We’d love to hear from you, if you have any other ideas, or recipes for herbal drinks that aren’t listed above?

Picture credit: ceramic mugs by Eric Trine