Founder of the The Caffeine Trifecta, Suk-yi Lo pursued her passion of coffee, tea and dark chocolate to create The Caffeine Trifecta in store and online for all caffeine lovers to enjoy. Her shops and store showcase a range of beautiful of quality products.
Question: Health is so confusing! What are the health benefits of caffeine?
Suk-yi Lo: Caffeine has been associated with increased mental concentration and performance, as it is a stimulant. Research about caffeine has also been linked to reducing the risk of Parkinson diseases, Type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer (such as liver and prostate).
Question: Is caffeine in moderation absolutely okay for our health?
Suk-yi Lo: As with everything, I believe in conscious consumption of caffeine - benefits with balance - as part of a healthy and balanced diet.
Reviews of large number of studies have indicated that there are positive health associations with consumption of coffee and caffeine, and is generally safe when consumed within a moderate intake of up to 3 - 4 cups of coffee a day.
And when you consume coffee, tea and chocolate, you consume not just caffeine, but the whole mixture of other bioactive compounds such as antioxidants and anti-inflammatories.
To derive the maximum health benefit from each cuppa, avoid as much of the sugary additives and flavour enhancers as you can.
Question: Can you share your top tips for creating the perfect coffee?
Suk-yi Lo: My top tips for creating the perfect coffee, no matter what coffee you are making:
A cup of perfect coffee is only as good as the beans you put in it. Use the best quality beans you could afford.
If you can, buy coffee beans and grind them as you need before you make your coffee. Freshly ground coffee makes better coffee.
Get the ratio of coffee to water right.
Question: Can you share your morning routine with us?
Suk-yi Lo: With my two young kids, mornings are usually pretty hectic. I usually start off my morning with a glass of warm water, before the kids wake up. Breakfast with them usually involves a combination of toast, Weetbix, eggs or fruit. I also have a cup of black tea with a dash of milk. My cup of coffee comes in the late morning. Depending on where I am, it could be either made using my stovetop moka pot and a milk frother if I am at home, a coffee machine if I am in the office or enjoyed at a cafe if I am out and about.
Question: Why should we incorporate tea into our daily routine?
Suk-yi Lo: This really boils down to personal preference. Some people drink it for the taste, and some for the health benefits. We all have busy lives and hectic routines, and for some, preparing and drinking a cuppa is a chance to stop and step back. I drink it for all these reasons.
Oftentimes when I drink tea that is especially connected to a memory, my mind reconnects with the people who are associated with it. This then serves as a reminder to me - call that person just to say hi.
Question: How can we practice mindfulness whilst brewing our tea?
Suk-yi Lo: Mindfulness encourages us to be here and now. Try not to think about the past or the future, but concentrate on the present moment of making the tea. Whatever thoughts that arise while you are making the tea, let it flow through gently and then come back to the present.
Brew your tea mindfully by concentrating on each step. Choose a tea that delights you and smell it. Put it into the teapot or tea infuser. Bring your water to a boil and pour your water into the tea leaves when the right temperature is reached. Observe the steam for a moment, and take a deep breath while enveloping yourself in the aroma. When the tea is ready, pour with a smile and tell yourself - I am ready for a nice cup of tea. Take a sip and let yourself to have the permission to relax.
Don't rush the process, if you can.
Question: What other tips do you have for implementing easy and practical self-care practices into our life?
Suk-yi Lo: Find organic ways to incorporate self-care, without it feeling like another task on the to-do list, can sometimes be hard. I think the first thing that we must do before we dive into self-care is to recognise the triggers that tell us when we actually need it, and whether it is physical care and emotional care that we need.
If it is physical care, then some easy and practical ways would be to eat and sleep well, which I know sometimes is easier said than done! It is also good to move around, and I like a walk for that, rather than going to the gym. I find the sights and sounds whilst on a walk to be a good mental break.
I also want to share an easy-to-implement tip I found very useful for me. When I need a quick breather, I would go outdoors, look at up at the sky and take a deep breath, even if it is at night. And when you look outwards and upwards, you see the expanse and majesty of the universe, and suddenly problems seem far away and small in comparison. It always resets me.
Question: Why do you believe Australia has the best coffee culture in the world?
Suk-yi Lo: Australia's coffee culture is built upon the espresso culture, which grew from the cafes owned by Greek and Italian migrants in the 1950s. I believe we have a great (if not the best!) coffee culture in the world, because we have lifted coffee to an entirely new level here.
We pay attention to good quality coffee beans, we have a fantastic cafe culture which enhances the coffee culture (smashed avo on toast anyone?), and we do nuances of coffee really well with just slight tweaks in espresso/milk/froth ratio. We don't need our coffees to have additives such as flavourings, because our coffees are so well-made that they are great on their own.
Question: What inspired you to start The Caffeine Trifecta?
Suk-yi Lo: As with many of you, I enjoy a good cup of coffee and tea, and eating dark chocolate. I like the ritual of steeping and brewing, of sipping and savouring. I appreciate the sight, the aroma and the taste.
The Caffeine Trifecta germinated out of my dream to bring together the world of coffee, tea and chocolate in a single convenient location, for caffeine lovers like me who are short on time but big on passion. A place where caffeine lovers can find locations to enjoy caffeine, products to buy, knowledge to learn and experiences to share, all at their fingertips.
Question: What can we find at The Caffeine Trifecta?
Suk-yi Lo: My aims with The Caffeine Trifecta are to promote a good caffeine lifestyle:
To curate good quality coffees, teas and chocolates for caffeine lovers in a single location
To share tea and coffee rituals and culture, and where to enjoy them
To explore recipes, pairings, reviews and learnings related to coffee, tea and chocolate.
Question: What's next for you and The Caffeine Trifecta?
Suk-yi Lo: As The Caffeine Trifecta is a new start-up, I would be concentrating on building a solid foundation of doing what I am doing, to better serve caffeine lovers in Australia.
As for my own personal journey, it would be to live life to the fullest, whatever life chooses to present to me next!
Interview by Brooke Hunter
Photo by NordWood Themes on Unsplash