How I Quit Coffee
Much like the average person, I looked forward to my morning cup of coffee every single day. I used to joke and say my birth stone was a coffee bean because I would literally get excited to go to sleep just so I could wake up and have another cup. But, unfortunately coffee didn't love me as much as I loved it, and now my morning coffee pours have turned into matcha pours.
I was never the type of person who could have more than one cup though. I literally get anxiety just thinking about it. The reason I was so insanely addicted to coffee was because I absolutely love the smell and taste and I loved the whole routine of making it. There was just something so calming and therapeutic about it all. (I also loved that it made me use the bathroom and I know you know what I'm talking about). Luckily, I have built up my gut health, so much so, that I do not have to rely on it to make me go anymore (That blog post will come soon).
The unfortunate part is almost every single time I had coffee: I had trouble sleeping at night, I would get so anxious (which is rough for someone who already deals with anxiety), I crashed fast as fck (by like 11:30AM or noon), I was shaky, irritable, dehydrated, my body felt overly acidic, and my stomach quite literally felt like it was eating itself. Also, depending on the type I consumed -- about an hour or so after drinking it, I would get the sharpest pains in my stomach.
Even after all that, it was by no means easy for me to quit and every night when I couldn't sleep I would vow to myself never to have it again and then find myself with a coffee in hand the next morning. Each time I finally "committed" to quitting I would get to about day 3 and then breakdown and start the vicious cycle all over again.
It wasn't until over 3 weeks ago where enough was enough -- my midmorning crashes became intolerable and it was not giving me the energy I needed, and that's because coffee is such a strong stimulant and after a while your adrenals become exhausted. Thinking gets affected, energy levels get affected, the way your liver works, the way your hormones are produced or not. And all kinds of imbalances are born from that. So day 3 came again and I finally pushed past it and kept going. I think when it comes to quitting coffee your best bet is replacing it with a different morning beverage instead of trying to quit cold turkey. And if you have that kind of willpower, bless your soul.
Instead of rambling on over my break up with coffee, I thought I would give you a list of what worked for me:
If you are someone who drinks more than a cup a day, say you drink 3 cups, I would recommend gradually cutting down. First to two cups then to one then to decaf.
find another drink to replace it with. My favorite is a matcha latte, but finding a good quality matcha that doesn't break the bank can be tricky. My current favorites are: Art of Tea, Soiree Tea (code: nicolettemarie), Ippodo -- fair warning the higher grade of ippodo can get pricy, but they do also have reasonable prices for some!
be prepared for the possibility of needing an extra energy boost -- I usually opt for a green juice and if you don't have time to make it yourself, you can always buy a bottled one or simply get a greens juice powder and mix it with water! I really like organifi (doesn't make you want to vomit)
get extra sleep to combat the fatigue and grogginess -- even if that means just sleeping in an extra 10 or 15 minutes or going to bed 30 minutes earlier
my personal favorite so far is jumping into a cold shower in the morning to naturally boost my energy (I promise it works hahaha) or go on a morning run/walk
PUSH past day 3!!! I promise once you get there it is much easier to keep going
invest in a tongue scraper because believe it or not, cravings can be reduced by scraping the tongue of leftover food, including coffee.
I am by no means saying I want to quit coffee forever, but I, personally, hate the feeling of depending on something. I also realized it was starting to do me more harm than good, which I realize isn't the case for everyone. However, if you are relying on your morning coffee as your only source of fuel I would suggest experimenting with quitting and investigating why you are fatigued in the first place.The artificial fuel is likely masking underlying imbalances in your hormones, mitochondrial dysfunction, or adrenal fatigue.
I thought quitting coffee was a death sentence, but really I have come to love the smooth, sustained energy I get from matcha. I love not feeling jittery or overly stimulated and I love that I can actually sleep without anxiety screaming in my ear. I can guarantee you there will be a time when I get back in the groove with coffee (especially with an influx of pumpkin spice lattes coming soon), but moving forward if I ever find myself consuming it in excess again, I know what to do to reset my energy levels. Contrary to popular belief you can still rule the world without a latte in hand!!