Is Caffeine Sobriety Necessary for Me?


Caffeine has been the foundation to the food pyramid for me lately. The question I have is: Is caffeine in general and long term good or bad for us?

I hear caffeine is good for your health. I hear caffeine is also not healthy. Recently a few friends went cold turkey off caffeine making me feel like I am not being health conscious. Caffeine is a drug, I know. A very addicting one too, may I add.

Am I too long gone addicted to come back from caffeine sobriety? Must I eliminate it from my diet altogether?

Obviously, it’s healthy in moderation but I can say I have been on a caffeine kick the past two weeks. And it’s not good. I have suffered several bad headaches on days I did not drink any coffee.

My heart feels a bit jumpy right now as I am amped up on a 4-shot Hazelnut Macchiato. When your chest feels slight discomfort, that cannot be good. I already know that I need to stay away from caffeine to let my anxious tendencies subside; no wonder I can’t sit still. I almost started skipping earlier – WTF? – when I was at work (away from my desk) outside in the beautiful weather. That is a sheer sign caffeine is ruling my body and did I just admit that?

Since my road trip this week, I do not think I have stopped off from the caffeine streak. The trip included: Monsters, No Doze pills washed down with soda, iced coffees and iced teas. What a diet! All washed down with numerous McDonald’s drive-thru meals. YUM! But all that caffeine made my trip enjoyable and I knew I was not going to get tired which gave me piece of mind. I did at the very tail end, but that doesn’t count, right? 19 out of 20 hours of driving not tired; pretty good odds if you ask me.

Not only is caffeine a great friend when you work graveyards and have an inconsistent sleep schedule, but for pockets where energy appears missing from the picture. It is a great source of energy before workouts (and a fat burner during workouts) and a nice thing to enjoy at home in the morning on days off on the couch. Sharing coffee with coworkers before heading in on workdays is the best part of a work day – minus crawling into bed in the mornings after a long shift. The cup in my hand, the talks, the laughs, the relaxing before a long shift. Priceless.

Studies show caffeine is the biggest antioxident in America’s diet and lowers heart disease. It is said to lower depression in women. It is said to lower the risk of Type-2 Diabetes. It is said to lower the risk for prostate cancer and skin cancers. It may stave off Alzheimer’s disease and Parkinson’s.

That’s a great thing to be a part of your daily diet, right? The debate has been brewing for a long time though. So the dark side to coffee and caffeine includes side effects: jitters.

I have those!

Other side effects are low grade irritibility, anxiety, exhaustion, spikes in blood sugar and insulin, insomnia, depletion of vitamins and mineral loss, heart rhythm concerns, and gastrointestinal problems.

The FDA recommends a daily limit of caffeine should be no more than 400mg. A venti- sized Starbucks drink contains 415mg. Today, with my frugalness and having a free drink coupon, I felt the need to get a venti AND add an additional shot to make me feel like I got my money’s worth. $5.50 for free! (I still feel ripped off for how much money is blown at this establishment!) But that extra shot now has me over 500mg no question. I should have realized what it meant when the Barista said, “You do know a venti comes with 3 shots, so this will be 4?” Hmm…I now get what he was telling me.

So, does this mean the fact that I have consumed way more than the healthy dose of caffeine today, tomorrow I will wake up craving more and being more exhausted? Monstrosity sized drinks are not my norm, but is a grande much better?

I think I realized tonight that the world is overcaffeinating itself to the point of addiction. I need to slow down. I am sure I am headed for some headaches and sleepy moments but think I better withdraw for my body’s sake.

Note taken: I have no idea if this blog even makes sense even after reading it several times. That in itself means TOO much caffeine.

Second note taken: Limit caffeine. It’s all about moderation.

I better take a caffeine holiday for the rest of the week.

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