46% Of People Drink This In The Morning (And It's Not Coffee)

Is there any drink more synonymous with "morning" than coffee? Except, in an international poll of 39,000 people conducted by The List, a mug of java did not rank as the top liquid consumed in the a.m. That honor goes to plain old water, which 46 percent of respondents said they chug bright and early every day.

This, health experts say, is a very good thing. "When you wake up in the morning, the body tends to be slightly dehydrated," Paula Simpson, RNCP, a holistic beauty nutritionist, pointed out to Well+Good. "You haven't had fluids for roughly eight hours, so drinking a couple of glasses when you first wake up will help rehydrate the body, allow for good digestion, and just get you going for the day." The benefits don't end there. Drinking water upon waking will fill you up, so you won't overeat later in the day, and it will even help your skin look better, USA TODAY reported.

Plenty of people do drink coffee first thing in the morning

While water might be the number one morning beverage, there's no danger of coffee becoming extinct. Nearly a quarter of survey respondents have a cup of morning joe. And this also is good news, because although over-consumption of coffee has health risks, according to Healthline, the right amount "may improve your mood, brain function, and exercise performance" – as anyone who's skipped their coffee and felt grumpy, fuzzy-minded, and sluggish all day can attest! And coffee may help prevent Alzheimer's disease, heart disease, and type 2 diabetes, as well, the outlet noted.

But guzzling java immediately upon waking isn't the ideal way to get your coffee on. Instead, you should wait until you've been awake for a full hour, Taste of Home reported. The idea is to avoid one of the three times a day when your are at a peak level of cortisol, which scientists call your "alertness hormone." If you swig your coffee just after those peaks, you'll maintain productivity all day long, because you won't be counterbalancing your body's natural "alertness" production by artificially caffeinating on top of it. The other two ideal times to drink coffee are "between noon and 1:00 p.m. and between 5:50 p.m. and 6:30 p.m." So perhaps drink water as soon as you wake, to rehydrate, and down some coffee an hour later, to really get things percolating!

Certainly, though, water and coffee aren't the only morning beverage options. About 15 percent of those surveyed start their day with a cup of tea, and 10 percent have juice.