Do you find yourself becoming more tired during cold weather? This is our body’s natural reaction when the temperature drops in the autumn and winter seasons, as our body tries to enter a ‘hibernated state’. However, unlike other mammals, humans can’t hibernate – we must continue with our day-to-day lives. But with our bodies half-asleep, our focus on daily tasks is also affected… So how do we improve our concentration? Fetch ourselves a hot drink, of course.
The good news is there are several natural and even delicious ways to improve our mood and concentration. One of these is a good old cup of hot coffee, tea, or chocolate. A hot drink on a cold day is the perfect potion to give us an energy boost that will keep you alert and help you work better throughout the day.
The positive effects of caffeine
Caffeine is known as a stimulant. This makes caffeine in moderation an excellent source of energy throughout the winter. Several research studies have even supported the fact that caffeine has a positive effect on brain responses and aids the improvement of concentration. The length of caffeine effect varies in every person and it is important to remember that all things, including caffeine, should be taken in moderation.
A relaxed state of being alert
Are you familiar with the relaxed state of alpha? People who meditate believe in the benefits of this electromagnetic activity of the brain. There have been several discoveries about the therapeutic uses of being able to attain this relaxed mental state and the good news is, you don’t have to be a Zen master to attain a relaxed state of alertness. It is said that a simple hot cup of tea can actually recreate the magic of meditation in an instant.
The benefits of L-theanine
L-theanine is an amino acid by-product. This derivative can be found in teas and has been discovered to be beneficial to our health. L-theanine is now known to help reduce feelings of stress and anxiety as it relaxes the mind but keeps our brain fully alert. This means drinking hot tea is likely to keep awake and efficient making it a perfect counter to the sluggish effect we feel during cold weather.
A perfect combination
There have been studies conducted and has shown that combining caffeine and theanine produces better results. On its own too much caffeine produces minor side effects on people like increased heart rate. The good thing is theanine produces a calming effect that regulates the slight rise of heart rate when drinking caffeine. This combination makes for a perfect hot drink to improve concentration and help us survive the bitter cold months of winter.
Richard Woods is a writer for KLIX UK, the vending machine division of Mars Inc.