Are you a coffee addict? I assume so, otherwise what would you be doing here. Do not worry, most people are extremely addicted to coffee. Here I will show you how you can quit coffee in 5 easy steps.
The truth is nobody is actually addicted to coffee. What people are addicted to, is caffeine. It is not coffee withdrawal, but CAFFEINE withdrawal that is giving you those nasty headaches when you try to stop drinking coffee.
Why should I stop drinking coffee?
You may be thinking, “Coffee is AMAZING! Why on earth would I want to stop drinking coffee?”
Coffee (more specifically, caffeine) is defined as a drug because it stimulates the central nervous system, causing increased alertness. Caffeine gives most people a temporary energy boost and elevates mood. The key word here, is “temporary”. The energy boost you get from consuming caffeine will not last. I see caffeine as a credit card. You buy something now, but you have to pay for it later. When you do pay for it, you pay interests! That is what caffeine is. It gives you energy now, but later you will have to pay it back and more! Caffeine gives you unstable energy levels and mood swings. It is almost impossible to get the deep, healthy sleep that your body deserves if you are using caffeine.
How do I know if I am addicted to caffeine?
It is very easy to find out if you are addicted to caffeine. All you have to do is to stop using it for a single day. If you can not get through the day without craving caffeine, then you are addicted to the substance. If you can force yourself to get through the day, but you find it to be difficult and you experience withdrawal symptoms such as headaches and fatigue, then you are also addicted to caffeine.
How to stop drinking coffee in 5 easy steps
I keep going back to coffee. The reason for this is because coffee is where 99% of people get their caffeine from. There are many different sources of caffeine, such as: energy drinks, soft drinks, chocolate bars, sports gels, tea and so forth. Even with all the different things that contain caffeine, almost everyone gets most of their caffeine intake from coffee. Here is how you can break your coffee addiction once and for all:
1. Be prepared to sleep, A LOT.
When you are attempting to break your caffeine addiction, you will go through a period of extreme tiredness. You will want to sleep a lot. Do not worry, this is completely normal. When I quit coffee nearly five years ago, I slept 10 hours a night and 1-2 hours during the day every single day. This went on for at least a month after quitting coffee. That is why I recommend that you quit coffee when you have the time to sleep as much as you need. Do not do it during a busy work schedule or during your university exams. Do it when you are on vacation.
2. Find an alternative to coffee
For years, as soon as I opened my eyes in the morning I had a cup of coffee. Every single morning. When I quit coffee, the most challenging part of my day became the first 5-10 minutes of being awake. I would struggle to get out of bed, no matter how much sleep I got during the night and I would CRAVE coffee. What I did instead of having a cup of coffee is that I drank a bottle of water, roughly 750ml.
I then got out of bed and walked around the house while getting ready for school. After the 5-10 minutes had passed, the craving would go away and I would know that I have made it another day without drinking coffee.
3. Do light exercise, preferably cardio
As I mentioned above, when you stop drinking coffee you will feel extremely tired. That is why it is non-sensical for you to begin a strenuous exercise or weight loss routine during the same time that you stop drinking coffee. Exercise is good and you may well need to lose weight, but sometimes you also need to fight one battle at a time. Right now, you are focusing on quitting coffee.
I recommend doing at least 30 minutes of light cardio every single day. This could be a fast paced walk, run or cycle. Doing daily cardio at a sustainable pace, will improve your sleep quality at night and get your blood flowing. Remember that the main focus here is to help your body recover from the years of stimulant abuse. You should not be training for a marathon.
4. Eat a sufficient amount of calories, from healthy food
Instead of getting your energy from coffee, which we now know is not sustainable and not healthy, you want to focus on getting energy from healthy food. Healthy food are rich in vitamins, minerals and most importantly, carbohydrates. Every cell in the human body runs on carbohydrates. It is the preferred fuel source of all human beings.
Excellent sources of carbohydrates include rice, potatoes and pasta. Make these the staple of all your meals and add vegetables on top of these carb rich staples, so that you can get in enough of the nutrients your body needs to feel amazing. I would also recommend snacking on fruit or making fruit smoothies when you do not feel like eating a cooked meal.
5. Find a partner that will quit coffee with you
It is easier to take on challenges if you have someone who is doing it with you! This is true for almost everything, so it makes sense that quitting coffee is no different. You will find it much easier, if you have a friend or family member who will quit coffee with you. That way you will know that someone is going through the same withdrawal symptoms as you are, but that you can get through it together.
Good luck with quitting coffee!
If you do manage to quit coffee, you will be rewarded with more stable energy levels, less mood swings and of course, increased sleep quality. Overall you will feel a lot healthier and a whole lot better. It may not be easy to break away from this extremely addictive drug, but it will be worth it.