Giving Up Coffee for the New Year?

alt caffeinated beverages
alt caffeinated beverages
Increasingly, consumers are turning away from traditional pick-me-up sources like coffee, tea and sugar-packed sodas, which have led to the rise of alternative beverages. Photo credit Korinne Wakeman for Phocus

While it’s technically considered a “vacation,” holiday time is rife with commitments and circumstances that constantly keep us on our toes—from braving stores in search of last-minute presents, to playing reluctant host to visiting family members and acting as 24/7 activities director for kids on break from school. No wonder we tend to rely on caffeine to carry us through. Not to mention copious amounts of alcohol consumed at Christmas parties—or you know, because it’s the only way to maintain sanity when faced with a mother-in-law’s passive-aggressive jabs.

Yet increasingly, consumers are turning away from traditional pick-me-up sources like coffee, tea and sugar-packed sodas, which have led to the rise of alternative beverages like Phocus. “The nation is experiencing the growing health issues of diabetes and obesity, which currently costs the healthcare system upwards of $700 billion per year” said Phocus CEO and co-founder, Tom O’Grady. “Americans need to take a break from sugar and artificial sweeteners and consumers deserve healthier, functional beverage options.”

Enter caffeinated sparkling water, which in the case of brands like Phocus, contains zero calories, no sugar, and is naturally flavored with botanical extracts. Which means, it’s an excellent way to both avoid caffeine headaches and keep you energized well into the day, and is tasty, bubbly and celebratory enough to sub in for party cocktails like Champagne. The obvious upside being that you can drive home safely and avoid hangovers the next morning, so you can rise, shine and take on even more holiday madness!

Not only does Phocus contain 75 grams of caffeine—sourced from natural green tea, and comparable to an 8-ounce cup of coffee—it’s combined with the amino acid L-theanine, which extends the release of caffeine to the body gradually over time. This provides a smooth lift and prevents the “caffeine jitters” often associated with coffee and certain energy drinks and enables consumers to concentrate on the task at hand. Sounds like a welcome addition to our coping-with-Christmas toolkit.

Available in both sparkling and non-sparkling flavors, Celcius is a popular pick among exercise enthusiasts. Besides being totally tasty—without relying on artificial flavors, high fructose corn syrup and aspartame—it provides an energy boost and is clinically proven to accelerate metabolism and burn calories and body fat. Not a bad way to counteract those holiday cookie binges!

This San Fran success story features sparkling water infused with organic caffeine, organic ginseng, organic guarana, B vitamins and natural fruit flavor. The result is a free from calories and sugar quencher that’s just as enjoyable on its own, as it would be—say—combined with a surreptitious shot of vodka or gin. Or not. You can always re-assess come Drynuary.

hint gives a serious lift to boring old H2O, all without resorting to sugar and diet sweeteners. Infused with natural fruit essences and available in still, sparkling, and caffeinated still varieties (in flavors like peach, pineapple and crisp apple). It’s also Non-GMO certified, vegan and comes in BPA-free bottles, with a company-wide goal to use less and less and less plastic each year. Sounds like a gift to you AND to the environment!