MORNING GLORY: JUMP-START YOUR DAY WITH THESE BEVERAGES.

 
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If you're anything like 50 percent of Americans, one of the first things you do after rolling out of bed each morning is turn on the coffeepot and guzzle down several cups of caffeinated goodness. Although there's nothing wrong with a daily cup (or two) of coffee--there are even some potential health benefits, like protection against Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease--too much can lead to dehydration and heartburn, not to mention anxiety and diminished sleep quality.

Whether you've always eschewed coffee or you're looking to cut out caffeine temporarily, consider starting your day with one of these drinks instead:

* INFUSED WATER. It's always a good idea to start off the day hydrated. Research has shown drinking a tall glass of H20 right when you wake up can improve your metabolism, curb overeating and flush out toxins. Consider adding lemon, grapefruit, cucumber or mint to your water for both flavor and a hit of vitamins.

* MATCHA TEA. Thought to lower blood pressure and cholesterol, improve metabolism and stave off cancer, matcha tea has a small amount of caffeine, which can't hurt on those extra-groggy mornings.

* GRAPEFRUIT JUICE. If you re looking for a sweet and tangy start to the day, consider grapefruit juice. Research suggests grapefruit juice can help with weight loss.

* CHAI. Packed with antioxidants, this Indian tea is rich and flavorful--just like coffee, but without the caffeine. Plus, warm beverages like tea are thought to aid digestion.--J.F.

TOP OF MIND

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