Bulletproof Coffee: The New Power Breakfast

Mj 618_348_bulletproof coffee the new power breakfast
Photograph by Travis Rathbone

It sounds insane – blending your morning coffee with chunks of butter and a spoonful of coconut oil. But so-called bulletproof coffee is fast becoming the go-to power breakfast. Fans say drinking just a cup of the stuff yields hours of energy and zero snack cravings. The experts are on board, too.

"The fat from the butter and the oil creates a filling effect, and the coffee's caffeine helps make fatty acids more available for uptake into fat and muscle tissue, where it can immediately be used as energy," says Paul Arciero, director of the Human Nutrition and Metabolism Laboratory at Skidmore College. The omega-3 fatty acids in the butter and coconut oil may help reduce inflammation and lower your triglyceride levels, adds Arciero. Research shows the oil specifically can boost your metabolism by up to 5 percent, helping you burn an extra 120 calories a day. And now that research has made it clear that a main contributor to heart disease is sugar – found readily in carb-heavy breakfast foods and juice – and not fat, butter-laced coffee may be the ideal morning meal.

Mj 390_294_the truth about bulletproof coffee

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Though bulletproof's appearance is relatively recent in the U.S., Tibetans have fueled up on buttery drinks for centuries. That's how Bulletproof creator Dave Asprey stumbled upon the idea in 2004. "What converted me was watching these Sherpas, some of the toughest human beings I have ever seen, live mostly on a mixture of yak-butter tea for days on end," says Asprey. "It tasted creamy, good, and strangely rejuvenating; I felt better on that trip than on any other high-altitude trek." Asprey returned home and workshopped his own version with coffee, and now his recipe is sold in more than 50 local coffee shops nationwide, with legions of fans from celebrities to pro athletes. He plans to roll out Bulletproof storefronts early next year, beginning in Santa Monica.

Until then, the best way to try the drink is to brew a fresh cup at home. Basic Bulletproof requires just three ingredients and a blender. If you're more ambitious, try Men's Journal columnist Laird Hamilton's souped-up recipe, below.

Basic Bulletproof

  • 2 tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 cup hot coffee

Combine the butter and oil with coffee in a blender.

Laird Hamilton's Supercharged Coffee

  • 1 tbsp grass-fed butter
  • 1 tsp coconut oil
  • 1 tsp red palm oil
  • 1 tsp MCT oil
  • 1 cup hot coffee

Hamilton swears by the additional oils in this recipe to stay energized and full. Put the butter and oils in a cup, pour in coffee, and steam to melt and mix the ingredients.

ALSO: Why Experts Now Think You Should Eat More Fat

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