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Whilst out walking the other day I noticed a board outside the local garden centre advertising a High Street chain which was inviting peeps in for an afternoon pick-me-up coffee.

The problem with pick-me-up coffee is that it tends to give you a buzz initially and then drops you from a height afterwards. High in caffeine, coffee is a stimulant which triggers the stress response. (Really, do you need more stress? No? I thought not!) This plunges the body into “fight or flight” mode, totally artificial in our modern world, unless of course there really is a tiger lurking behind the pot plants! As your cells need instant energy to help you fight or leg it from the perceived danger, glucose is unpacked from storage pronto and floods the blood stream (hence the buzz), but once the body cottons on to the fact that it really isn’t a life-or-death situation, the sugar is packed away again. Nowadays we rely too heavily on our caffeinated pick-me-ups. The constant moving around of glucose uses up precious reserves of nutrients and energy, which over time can leave us depleted. The body’s carefully fine-tuned mechanisms, highly taxed, can also start going wrong. Cravings, hypoglycaemia, and diabetes are just a few outcomes.

If you do want a little caffeine “lift”, then I would recommend green tea, which is gentler and comes with health benefits.

For an afternoon pick-me-up, however, I like to make myself a raw cacao milkshake (made from nuts or seeds). All natural, healthy stuff which helps to re-energise us whilst re-stocking the body’s nutrient reserve too.

For 1 person

  • 0.5 pints hemp milk (I make my own and use it fresh. You can use shop-bought milk, such as hemp or almond)
  • 1 tablespoon maca powder
  • 3 teasp raw cacao powder (3 teaspoons give it a nice chocolatey flavour, 2 teaspoons are also nice)
  • 1.5 teasp bee pollen, ground
  • 1 large banana
  • 4 good drops of vanilla essence

Put all the ingredients in a blender and whiz round. Pour into a glass, sit somewhere relaxing and enjoy!! Your cells will start singing with that chocolatey goodness 🙂