It’s a drug.  Plain and simple.  Believe me…get to day 3 of no caffeine and the detox headache, body aches and irritable moods are enough to tell you so.

Here I am, on day 5 and I feel like someone beat the you know what out of me.  AND I ONLY HAD ONE, yes ONE, (albeit strong) CUP OF COFFEE A DAY!!!!  (Excuse the yelling…that’s detox Amanda speaking). 😉

So, through my research I have found loads of information on why caffeine is horrible for us.  And have found little telling otherwise (very few reasonable justifications for drinking it).  That’s enough right there for me to know that just as I don’t want to put crap food in my body, shouldn’t crap drinks count as well?  (Yes, alcohol included.  My blog on why I quit drinking alcohol – other than rare occasion and with similar “rules” to food consumption – will be coming soon).

A little background…
I grew up drinking diet soda.  It was my favorite thing to drink.  Even before ballet class, I’d grab a soda (along with a bag of Gardetto’s).  Just as through high school, my breakfast every morning was a Diet Pepsi and a Snicker’s bar.  Oh to be a kid again, and able to ingest absolute crap and still function. 😉  As I’ve aged, I’ve noticed that anything I put into my body is a direct reflection of my productivity and mood for that day.  It’s probably always been that way, but has become more apparent since becoming more in tune with my body.   Anyway, I got pregnant with my first child when I was 19.  I made many changes to better my health, and did so through each of my four pregnancies.  But as soon as my babies would wean, I was back to drinking ridiculous amounts of soda again, every single day.  It was only after I started reading about the impact of our diet and the diseases it causes in 2009, that I cold turkey’d my soda and moved to coffee.  I drank coffee for awhile.  Usually a cup or two a day, then went through a whole foods cleanse (about 3.5 years ago).  I quit coffee, went through the detox (of not only caffeine, but sugar, gluten, alcohol and processed foods).  I figured the detox symptoms I went through there was due to ALL of the stuff I was detoxing, not the caffeine.  You can read about that cleanse here.  But, going through this detox now, I’m realizing that the caffeine was definitely a culprit to my horrible feelings during that time.  Anyway, to make a long story short, I went through a tea phase for a couple years, and switched back to coffee about a year ago.  One cup a day, sometimes one and a half.  That’s it.  And now I’ve quit, and today, I hurt.  Physically, mentally…I hurt.  But I’m over the hump so I’m going to keep going.

Day 1 – No prob.  Felt great, went and worked in the garden for several hours.  Then 4pm hit and I was done.  Irritated, sore, tired and over it.

Day 2 – Same…felt great in the morning.  By 2 that day I was lying on the couch taking a catnap.  Irritated, short, a bit foggy.  Headache sets in.

Day 3 – Headache.  It’s not one of those horrible pounding headaches…just one of those major pressure like someone is drilling through your skull types of aches.  No big deal. 😉  Right!  I needed a nap that day as well.  Still irritable, short with everyone, and foggy.

Day 4 – Dull headache and body aches.  I passed out on the couch in the afternoon.  But, I was less irritable, and clarity was setting back in.  So much so that I was able to clean the files on my computer for several hours.  WOW!

Day 5 – Didn’t sleep last night.  Wasn’t feeling well.  I would normally “NEED” some caffeine today.  Instead I’m drinking a caffeine free cup of tea and a quart size juice I made.  So far, headache is gone although I still feel a bit foggy.  But, my body feels like it was hit by a truck.  It could be the garden work, and the fact that I do P90X3, but I’m banking more on it being the detox since I’ve worked in a garden forever and I’ve been doing P90X3 for over 7 weeks now.

ETA Day 6 – I feel like a new person!  Other than my extremely sore boobs because I’ll be starting my cycle soon (tmi, sorry).  Anyway, I’ve done this detox WHILE PMS’ing.  WTH was I thinking?!?!  Oh well, I feel amazing today.  It’s worth it!

ETA Day 9 – Feeling amazing and still caffeine free.

So here I am, through what I’m hoping is the worst of the detox, and writing this with the intention of convincing myself that I do NOT need caffeine.  If I continue speaking of the reasons why I quit, I’ll make it through.  That’s my hope anyway.  (I don’t want to look like that guy on the screen and the things I’ve read about why it’s good to drink include: being alert, happy, and functioning better…but I can feel all of those things if I sleep well and eat well, and coffee inhibits both rest and eating well…sooooo…it seems like such a strange justification for drinking it).

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So if you’ve read for this long, THANK YOU!  Here’s where I’ll tell you about the reasons why I went on this crazy “adventure” and decided to quit drinking coffee.

  1. I don’t like anything having power over me.  If it controls me, I want it gone.
  2. It makes my breath stink.
  3. It’s work.  And not like fun work.  It’s work like, hurry up, you’re taking forever, what am I going to do if you don’t pour down my throat in 3..2..1…ahhhhhh, I NEED COFFEE!!!  type of work.  Again, power.  It has too much power over me.
  4. Caffeine increases stress hormones.  I do NOT need anything contributing to my stress levels.  I’ve got that covered just fine on my own.
  5. Coffee imbalances your gut flora leading to heartburn, indigestion, digestive issues, etc.
  6. Caffeine can inhibit the absorption of calcium, iron and other minerals our bodies need.
  7. Can be linked to reproductive issues and lumpy breast tissue (and being high risk for breast cancer, I’m not messing with anything that can affect my breasts).
  8. Causes dehydration.
  9. It’s a drug.

I could go on with reasons why caffeine/coffee are not right for me.  But this is the list that speaks most to me and reminds me of why I’m putting my body through this detox.  Biggest thing for me, I don’t want to be dependent on anything but healthy food and water to function through the day.   So the more I cut the crap, the better I feel.  It’s an amazing feeling to receive my energy from restful nights, whole foods and exercise and not something that has a list of side effects.

I’ll update on how it’s going in a couple weeks.  Wish me luck!  And if anyone out there is wanting to quit, let’s be cheerleaders for one another!  We can do it! 😉

For today…I’ll be here:

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Caffeine – Why I Quit
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