This Magical (and Healthy) Energy Drink Might Make Us Give Up Coffee

I’m a New Yorker, so coffee is basically in my blood. But sometimes I suspect that tasty, tasty venti is working against me, making me feel bloated and a bit jittery and anxious. Instead of quitting cold turkey, I turned to Dirty Lemon Energy, a new drink that claims to give you sustained energy and combat stress, without the crash. I swapped it for my beloved coffee for a week—here’s what happened.

What is this stuff? It’s a blend of green tea, stress-busting herbs like Ashwagandha and Siberian Ginseng, lemon juice, lime juice, essence of orange blossom honey and filtered water (aka, no bad stuff).  And thanks to the green tea, one 16-ounce bottle has the same amount of caffeine as a cup of coffee.

What does it taste like? Fresh lemon water. It’s tart—a whole bottle has less than 1 gram of naturally occurring sugar from the lemon and lime juice—but it’s quite refreshing. I’m not a huge green tea fan, so I was relieved that I couldn’t detect its flavor.

Does it actually work? Yes. Actually, make that a hell yes. The instructions say to drink it as you would your daily cup of coffee or tea, so I cracked one open every morning when I got to my desk. It instantly perked me up, but not in a jittery or unpleasant way. I felt energized but relaxed, almost like I’d just finished a fab spin class. Instead of upsetting my stomach, it actually soothed it. Pretty much the opposite of coffee, which makes my stomach unpleasantly grumbly. I was even able to drink it on an empty stomach. Best of all, come 3 p.m., I didn’t need a pick-me-up. To get through a long Friday night out, I tried having a second one later in the day, and it didn’t prevent me from falling asleep when my head finally hit the pillow.

How much does it cost? A case of six bottles costs $65, plus shipping. That’s a little more than $10 a bottle. Yep, the price is steep, but think about the tab you run up at Starbucks. I rest my case.

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