Have you ever considered going caffeine free? Caffeine has become a part of our daily routines. For many of us it has gone past merely enjoying the added boost in energy, to having a full dependency on caffeine in order to wake up and get through our day. We are going to go over the different benefits to cutting our caffeine from our diets. Along with how caffeine affects our sleeping habits. Keep reading for all of this, plus tips on how to get off and stay off of caffeine.
Benefits to Quitting Caffeine
It may be hard to give up, but quitting, or even reducing, your caffeine intake can have many positive effects. Below are several areas your life could positively respond to cutting caffeine out all together, or reducing it dramatically.
Increased Sleep Quality (& Quantity):
Here at Our Sleep Guide, we give a lot of thought and energy into giving advice and product reviews so that our followers can get better sleep.
Which is why when it comes to the benefits of cutting caffeine, the first thing we think of are the sleep benefits.
The effects of caffeine can stay active in your system for 4-6 hours. Which means your afternoon pick me up could be keeping you up or lowering the quality of your sleep into the evening. By quitting caffeine, you could potential get to sleep faster, and have higher sleep quality overall.
Caffeine dependency is a known trigger for migraines. Having too much caffeine can trigger a migraine headache, while not having enough caffeine can also trigger a migraine.
If you are incredibly sensitive to having migraines and you have found that caffeine plays a big part in that for you. Then cutting caffeine out of your diet entirely may be hugely beneficial to you.
Lower Anxiety & Stress
For those who struggle with stress and anxiety, highly caffeinated beverages can really set you off. The sensation of consuming a large amount of caffeine can feel very similar to the beginning stages of a panic attack. Elevated heartrate, cold sweat, racing thoughts, upset stomach, and so on.
Not only is this simply the bad side of caffeine for everyone, as it is no fun to feel these kinds of symptoms. For those who suffer with anxiety and stress, this can set off having a panic attack.
- Whiter & Healthier Teeth
- Lower Blood Pressure
- More Efficient Nutrients Absorption (Calcium, Iron, B Vitamins)
- Estrogen Levels Balanced Out
Caffeine addictions can be surprisingly expensive. While a standard small black coffee can cost you as little as $1. Most caffeinated beverages, especially fancy drinks from coffee shops can run you much more per drink. While this may seem like a low expense item, it can add up very quickly.
If you are not sure how much you spend on coffee, energy drinks, or whatever your caffeine of choice may be. Then we suggest you look into your budget and see how much you spent last month, and what that annualizes out to. For many this is a very eye-opening experience.
Learn more about melatonin & sleep in our post: Meditation for Sleep, Anxiety & Healing
Why Caffeine Disrupts Your Ability to Fall Asleep:
To understand how caffeine affects your sleep, you first need to understand how it works as a stimulant.
Caffeine blocks Adenosine (a chemical that promotes sleep by slowing down neural activity.) from making its neural connections. This is because caffeine binds with the same receptors that Adenosine needs to work properly.
When caffeine intercepts this activity, it prevents the body from slowing down neural activity and instead, speeds it up. This is what makes caffeine feel like a boost in energy and focus.
However, it disrupts your bodies normal slow down process that is needed in order to calm your body and mind in order to go to sleep. Making caffeine a big problem for those who have trouble falling asleep or with insomnia.
Struggle with insomnia? Get our top tips in our post: Guide To Insomnia
Symptoms of Caffeine Withdrawal
When you begin your journey of quitting caffeine, you may find that you experience withdrawals.
These withdrawal symptoms are no fun to go through. However, it is a good sign that you are starting the process of losing your dependency on caffeine.
Having trouble staying alert at the office? Check out our article How To Stay Awake At Work
Watch Out for Hidden Caffeine
When you are on a mission to cut out caffeine, it is easy to get tripped up by hidden caffeine. When we began to look into it ourselves, we were very surprised and the places you can find caffeine where you would never expect to find it. Below are some of the most common places to find hidden caffeine.
This one will come as a complete surprise to some of you. While decaf is significantly lower in caffeine than the standard cup, it still has caffeine in it.
Which means if you are really trying to cut caffeine completely out of your diet, then you are going to want to avoid drinking decaf.
Unfortunately, it is not 100% caffeine free. Although for those looking to slowly lower their caffeine intake, this is a great option for you.
Menstrual Pain Relievers
A lot of menstrual pain relievers will contain a level of caffeine unless noted that it is caffeine free.
While it is supposed to help you to feel less groggy headed and fight headaches, the caffeine can actually make cramping worse.
Especially if you have an irritable bowel during your time of the month. So be sure to check the label if you’re looking to avoid caffeine.
Migraine Pain Relievers
Many migraine specific pain relievers will add caffeine to the pill. For many who suffer from migraines caused by caffeine withdrawals will benefit from having this caffeine in their migraine pain relievers.
If you are trying to break your dependency on caffeine, you are going to want to find pain relief that does not include caffeine.
This was one of the most surprising places where we found caffeine. It was a complete surprise to find that the multivitamin I had been taking daily had caffeine in it.
Which is completely unnecessary to have in a multivitamin. Check all your labels if you’re cutting out caffeine.
Chocolate naturally contains a low level of caffeine. The will increase with the darker chocolate verities. Most chocolates do not have on their labels that it contains caffeine as it is not added to the chocolate.
Which is why we suggest that you be mindful that even if it is not noted, it could still potentially contain a level of caffeine.
Juice Drinks (& many other drinks)
There are loads of drinking out there that have a good dose of caffeine, without even advertising it on the front of their label. Bai Antioxidant drinks are a great example of this. When you look at the front label and marketing you do not view these products as “energy drinks”.
However, if you look at the back of the label it packs a punch with caffeine. Which is why we always suggest taking a peek at the back of the label before you try something new. This will help you to avoid an accidental caffeine kick.
Looking for coffee that helps you go to sleep at night?! Check out the Spiritual Chill Coffee from Wildcrafter Botanicals.
How to Wake Up WITHOUT Caffeine
When you rely on caffeine to wake you up in the morning, it feels like you can’t make it through your day without it. However, the truth of the matter is that you can wake up and stay awake throughout your day without the assistance of caffeine. We are going to share with you our tips on how you can do just that.
Drink Ice Cold Water
When you first pick yourself up out of bed, drink a full glass of cold water. The temperature is a stimulating and invigorating.
While the water helps to rehydrate you. We often need extra hydration when we wake up in the mornings, and being dehydrated can make you feel groggy. This is a great way to perk yourself up first thing in the morning before you really get moving.
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Stretch & Wake Up Your Body
Before you hit the ground running, take the time and effort to wake up your body with a few stretches. When you lay in the same position for hours on end, your body tends to get a little stiff. Even with the best mattress and pillow combination, it is still natural to need a little warm up before you get moving.
Start with your toes to your legs and hips and then slowly work up to your neck and shoulders. Gently move around, stretch, and massage anything that feels tight or in need of a bit of extra attention. This is a great way to check in back with yourself as you slowly wake up your body and mind.
Eat an Energy Boosting Breakfast
With all our busy lives we often skip breakfast entirely. Especially if you are a caffeine drinker, it is very easy to skip breakfast. This is because caffeine is an appetite suppressant. You will find your appetite may return in the mornings as you stop drinking caffeine.
One way to give yourself an added boost of energy is to give your body fuel via food. High protein and fiber are a good long-lasting energy. Try to avoid overly sugary or carb filled breakfasts. This typically gives you a spike in blood sugar that quickly fades and leaves you feeling tired and hungry earlier in the day.
Take Your Vitamins (In The Morning)
Most vitamins are best absorbed after you eat a meal. We suggest taking them right after your breakfast. There are a lot of vitamins that give you an extra pep in your step and a boost in energy. Which is always best to not wait until after dinner to take them. This could even lead to you having trouble getting to sleep.
Vitamins like ginseng, B vitamins, vitamin D, and French oak wood extract are all energy boosting. It is also important that you are topped up on minerals like magnesium in order to ensure you are able to sleep naturally.
Get Your Body Moving
Feel tired? Move your body, get your blood pumping.
Exercise is one of the best ways you can give yourself a quick boost in energy. When you get your body and blood moving, you get a boost in adrenaline and endorphins that make you feel fantastic, awake, and alert.
There is no better wakeup call than a good workout. You will be amazed at how much more energy 30 minutes of cardio gives you than a cup of coffee.
Turn Up the Music
Music can be a great mood booster. The right playlist can really get you in a great mood and perk up your energy. This also goes very well with your morning workout. An energetic playlist is also a great addition to your morning commute.
Whether you are basting your tunes in the car, or in your headphones on the bus. Either way, it is a great way to give you a boost in energy without the need of caffeine.
Struggling to stay awake during your classes? You might like our blog How To Stay Awake In Class.
Are You Ready To Quit Caffeine?
Whether you choose to cut caffeine out of your diet completely, or you are just going to limit your intake. We hope that our quitting caffeine tips, tricks, and advice helps you achieve your goals. You really can be filled with energy and focus without the help of caffeine. Our tips and tricks can help you get back to waking up and staying awake without caffeine.
If you have any questions or just want to reach out, feel free to contact us. We would love to help you out.