I was listening to the Joe Rogan Experience podcast and he talked about quitting coffee and he experienced elevated mood levels, increased energy levels and feeling more "level".
I'm thinking of going cold turkey for three days and see how it suits me. Anybody here experience anything positive from stopping their coffee intake. I've been drinking coffee since I was 10 so I'm hoping the withdrawal symptoms aren't too drastic.
Get Free Paleo Recipes Instantly
Heh. Well, I've quit several times, and have even made it as long as four months. I've quit while eating the SAD, while eating VLC, and while eating paleo ZC. I can't report any noticeable positives, and each time had nothing but misery during withdrawal, so I'm sticking with my multiple daily cups of Joe.
OTOH, quite a few people report improvements in mood and sleep issues, so I don't want to rain on your experiment. I agree with the posters who counsel you to give it a reasonable (meaning more than two weeks) shot. But if you've been drinking coffee since age 10, you might find those first two weeks pretty rocky. Be strong.
I've had a great experience quitting caffeine! Well, to be honest, it was pretty crappy experience, but the end result has made it worth it. About a year ago I first quit drinking caffeine by cutting back significanly for a couple days and then my first day caffeine free coincided with a Saturday so I had the weekend to nap and do what I needed to do to get through it.
I'm one of those people whose 'moderator' is busted. I can't seem to regulate much of anything-- how much I'm exercising, sleeping, eating, not eating, alcohol/drugs, or drinking caffeine. As a result I'd gotten to the point where I was drinking pots of coffee a day starting from the time I got up and going until nearly bedtime. My mood would go up and down with the caffeine intake and I always hit a point in the day where I would get tremendously tired and no amount of caffeine would get me through it. After quitting I was forced to actually go to bed at a reasonable hour like Renee mentioned because I couldn't just plan on drinking more coffee to make up for a lack of sleep. My mood is much more even now as is my energy level throughout the day. I definitely recommend giving it a try! I was really worried about quitting, but overall I can't tell you how great it's been for me. Now instead of constantly drinking coffee I drink water and nearly nothing else. I suggest giving it a while-- like a month or longer to really get the full effects. Good luck!
Positive experience quitting coffee?
Yes, I have benefitted tremendously from quitting regular caffeine intake.
I used to drink a cup or two every morning, and get extremely tired in the afternoons. Even if I drank more coffee in the afternoon, (which I often did) it didn't affect my tiredness.
Once I quit caffeine, this stopped. My completely non-scientific, but probably close enough, explanation is that the caffeine was somehow causing me to "burn out" my energy stores and to use them all up in the morning, leaving me low-energy the rest of the day. So now my energy is much more even and I have higher energy throughout the day (though it takes me longer to fully wake up).
I still drink decaf for the delicious ritual of it.
I also sometimes drink caf -- I just make sure not to do so regularly enough that I get habituated to it.
As a side benefit, when I drink a SMALL amount of caf now -- say 1/3 of a cup -- it gives me a great, jitter-free energy boost. This didn't happen when I was a coffee regular. It's actually quite useful at times. (I don't get the downside, the afternoon tiredness, until my body becomes habituated to caffeine).
On cold turkey: if I do this, I get a terrible headache and become so tired as to be useless for about a day. I much prefer to phase the caffeine out over a week or so -- no negative effects that way. Some people can go cold turkey just fine though.
Yeh, I've commented to this effect on a number of similar threads on here: reducing/cutting caffeine is the health adjustment that has had the biggest impact on my health of any other by a long shot. I would think that you'd need to do it for more than three days though. I've felt awful for a week after withdrawing from coffee before- the benefits are profound, but long term.
Quitting coffee changed my life! I was am attending college and the late night studies increased my coffee drinking. I began to be really foggy everyday, I couldnt concentrate on my studies longer than 5 or 10 minutes. I would get drowsy and fall asleep during the day several times. I had 2 sleep studies done and they said I had Narcolepsy. I didnt beleive that, a I decided to quit drinking coffe cold turkey. The first day I had flue like symptoms and was really sick. I continued to have headaches for around 10 days. Now that I quit I dont fall asleep during the day. I dont have Narcolepsy or have to take all ot the Dr.s medication. My energy and focus has increased tremendously. I FEEL LIKE A NEW PERSON. I Give thanks to God!
Another coffee drinker who started at 10! Awesome. :) It was all those boring, stuffy old church gatherings that got me.
I was really sad when coffee started causing me problems: acid reflux, jitters, sweats, etc. I was BUMMED. I used to roast the stuff for a living. For years I drank chai in the mornings, but decided all that honey and milk weren't doing me any favors. Also, it just didn't give me that boost I like from coffee (I'm an addict and I admit it openly). I thought I was going to have to give up coffee completely.
Then I discovered Bulletproof Coffee: http://www.bulletproofexec.com/how-to-make-your-coffee-bulletproof-and-your-morning-too/
He talks about how most coffees these days have mold on them from being dried slowly in the sun. Here's what he has to say about that: "The real reason that cheap coffee and old coffee are bad for you is that they harbor some particularly toxic molds. Those molds that form when green coffee is stored are tied to cancer, heart disease, high LDL/VLDL cholesterol, and hormone irregularities."
You want to find water-processed coffee. I tried it out a few weeks ago (luckily, we have a hoity-toity coffeeshop here in town with several to choose from) and it actually works. No jitters, no sweats, no reflux. Amazing. Seriously. I don't make the bulletproof coffee recipe in entirety, though I want to try it with butter. But just switching to water-processed has made a world of difference to me.
So no, don't drink that decaf. Bad stuff.
i've been decaf'ed for about 14 weeks now. the first few days was awful -- major headaches. i never drank coffee for the caffeine / energy, i just love the taste! i quit because i noticed myself drinking more and more of it, and i was just curious how i'd feel with out it. after the withdrawal, my stress levels were MUCH lower and my sleep was significantly better. i never realized that the caffeine (even if i only had one cup in the morning) was actually making me toss and turn in my sleep. i'm the kind of person who tends towards anxiety, and in cutting out caffeine, i saw a huge improvement with that.
since decaf still feeds my desire for the taste of coffee, i don't expect that i'll go back to regular coffee. well, at least not as my go-to.
I'm on here for mental health problems, and right around when my mood, personality, abilities, excitement, all started decreasing in life, was actually around when I started drinking Coffee. I started at about age 19, I'm 23 now, and drank coffee before work because I had realized that it made the morning enjoyable once again like when I was a kid. But that following year into college, I sort of continued drinking a kurig cup every morning before class out of habit, not that I really needed it, and someohow I developed severe major depression that year. Once I quite coffee, 4 months ago, I'm mentally more stable, but nothing like the person I used to be prior to coffee.
Coffee's just another thing you wouldn't eat if you were really in connection with nature.
I gave up coffee around 15 years ago because I have IBS. I found it fine. I mean, yes when I smell it, for a moment I miss it, but that applies to freshly-baked bread as well. I think one thing that going caffeine-free forces you do to is get enough sleep - you can't "fake it" the next morning anymore.
I recently quit drinking coffee for same reasons as some above. I suffer from anxiety and would get really stressed at times. I have not stopped having caffeine, just coffee -- i switched to matcha green tea--this was supposed to give a more even-keel amount of caffeine, releasing it slowly rather than in a rush as coffee does. First three days I had headaches and was very tired. Matcha also helps with release of toxins because of all the minerals etc. so I think it was even worse. I was detoxing for sure. Day 4 was amazing--headaches gone and i seemed to have more energy. Keep in mind I have 2 cups of matcha a day, which had helped to replace my morning French press tradition. One thing I noticed especially after one week--I sleep like a newborn baby!!!! I never expected this as I have never had any problems sleeping, never thought I could possibly have deeper sleep. It feels sooo nice and cozy and I feel like i am getting rest I haven't had in years. Also, now 2 weeks later, anxiety gone. This whole time not drinking coffee I have an inner calm and do not seem to get angry and lose control of my emotions. That is priceless. I am so happy I could quit. I am not even looking back--I feel like I woke up from a nightmare I didn't even know I was in
Quitting coffee helped me make better decisions in life and be able to process and decipher information more clearly and greatly improved cognitive functioning and made me look 15 to 20 years younger, and made me sleep better, and decreased my paranoia and anger outbursts, and decreased my anxiety more than 70 percent. It is a miracle, but withdrawal was a demon of a thing and I have an addictions counsellor to keep me sober one day at a time. Coffee to me was like cocaine> My first couple of gulps of strong tasty full bodied coffee put me into a state of NIRVANA and later I would crash into anxiety and anger. Life without coffee is reality at first I was depressed but now I am better and much much happier and less anxious and depressed.
My limitation on coffee stems from several things I have heard, read or experienced with it, don't shoot me for a liar:
- I cannot control my intake, full carafe for me.
- too much and I shake and perspire a lot
- It causes a stress sensation which promotes Cortisol production, and decreasing Testosterone accordingly.
- Caffeine forces opens receptors for triggering wakefulness, and those receptors can become addicted to it, requiring it to function.
- Any more than 2 cups is a waste, because that is the max it takes to open all those receptors.
- Good coffee is EXPENSIVE.
I now limit it to situations with special social or physical attributes which deem it appropriate. For me, there have never been unbearable symptoms of withdrawal during recessive periods of consumption.
Hi, yes, I would say the overall effect of giving up coffee & tea has been positive for me.
I'm 37 and recently had to give up coffee and tea because of acid reflux & heartburn (I was told not to drink ANY tea or coffee, even decaffinated). Yes, it was hard. But the pain from the acid reflux was worse, so I persisted.
Coping Strategies: Coping strategies I have used while giving up coffee and tea are as follows: - At work I drink hot milk mixed with honey, mainly to replace the 1 to 2 cups of coffee I would drink. The milk fills me up and gives me energy and the honey gives me energy too. - To replace the 3-4 cups of tea I normally drink each day, I now drink camomile tea as it is good for acid reflux. At first I was worried that it would make me sleepy, but I haven't found this a problem so far. - In the mornings, I have been drinking 1 cup of dandelion tea. It takes a bit of getting used to the taste but I quite like the bitter flavour as it is refreshing and reminds me a bit of coffee. I'm not sure how good it is for acid reflux (heard different things) so I'm still kind of researching this.
Benefits: One thing I have noticed is that my skin is smoother and feels more hydrated. It's been about 3 weeks since I gave up coffee & tea. Another strange and weird thing is that my teeth seem cleaner. Honestly, they don't seem to have as many stains. I'm quite surprised at this - but i guess normally I would clean my teeth around 7am in the morning, drink tea all day and wouldn't clean my teeth again until 10pm at night, so that's like, 15 hours each day when the tea would sit on my teeth. Hmmm, when I think of it like that, it's no wonder I have noticed a difference. The acid reflux has been better too.
I actually don't think I would have had any reason to give up tea or coffee if it hadn't been for the acid reflux & heartburn, so it's been a very interesting process to go through!
To actually give it up and adjust to life without it took about 10 days for me. I then went the entire summer without.
The main reason I gave it up was that I only liked it with CoffeeMate liquid creamer :O and that wasn't going to fly on the new lifestyle.
I thought it was the coffee that was making me wake up bleary, but it turned out to be the wheat. Anyhow, after a summer without sugar I found I could sip coffee black but it wasn't yummy so why would I bother?
THEN I discovered that heavy cream and a little honey made it yummy and there was no morning grogginess or BG spike so that's where I am now. I sometimes drink a glass of water kefir first--if I wake up wanting anything it's that--but I plain enjoy sitting and slurping a little coffee.
You should experiment, then reserve the right to settle on the long-term option that you like the best.
Best time to quit coffee is during vacation (you need about one week) cold turkey. First 3 days are tough, thereafter symptoms decrease, jst dring plenty of water, try to exercise and sleep as much as you need.
Every once in a while coffee companies through 'paid' writers etc will do 'sneaky' advertisements so-called reaearch has shown etc that coffee is good for this, good for that..this is a wide practice in USA, even meat manufacturers use this technique to boost sales. You should not fall for this trick.
Quitting coffee leads to: 1. Better, improved sleep 2. Calmness with less stressful situations (less snapping at someone) and wiser thinking 3. Less damage to digestive, heart, liver and kidney systems 4. Less red eyes (tiny arteries in eyes tend to swell in coffee drinkers) 5. Decrease risk of strokes as coffee reduces blood flow to brain by a lot and increases brain pressure and blood pressure overall 6. Decreases arteriovascular disease
I can name dozens more but really, all you need is a couple of reasons to quit coffee. When addicted, your body 'feels' like it is alive again when drinking that cup of coffee but all you are doing is really getting back to what your level is supposed tobe anyway and then you go down, needing coffee again to go up to some level where it makes you feel like you are energized, but it only brings you to your levels that you are at (if not addicted to coffee) anyway. So you goo in a vicious cycle, increasing the dose just to be at your level that you would be anyway if you were not addicted to caffeien. Harmful effects are numerous. The ratio of negative to positive effects of coffee is more like 98 to 2%....
When I have limited caffeine in the past my anxiety level has significantly dropped, I also sweat less (embarrassing!). so yes they are positive experiences, best of luck.
Years ago I had ulcers, and eliminated one thing after another from my diet and discovered that quitting coffee (not caffeine, only coffee) immediately caused my symptoms to go away and the ulcers eventually healed on their own. I suspect that the combination of coffee and gluten was part of the problem too. After 3 months I gradually added it back and now don't have problems. Since going paleo, i am less sensitive to caffeine and coffee doesn't mess with my system any more (i used to regularly get GERD).
Quitting all caffeine was brutal for me, the first few days I had brain fog and headaches. I slept good for one night but after that it was no different. I eventually started to have black tea just to have some caffeine which helped, just like methodone for a heroin addict... There is no question in my mind that caffeine is physically addictive.
I quit not because I wanted to benefit from the possible positive effects, but because I stopped needing coffee after I went paleo. There is a difference between needing coffee and wanting coffee. My energy level has greatly improved and I don't need coffee in the morning to feel awake or alive again. I do 50 jumping jacks and 5 push-ups to feel energized in the morning. It's very liberating. But I am a coffeesnob nonetheless. I enjoy coffee not out of necessity but as a form of art.
I have 2 - 4 cups of coffee everyday. Just like Joe rogan talks about in the podcast, I enjoy the experience of the coffee. I like the smell, I like the ritual, I like the taste, etc...,
With that said, I give up coffee cold turkey every year for lent. I can report neither negative withdrawal symptoms from quitting nor positive effects from removing it. Instead, I just abstain in something I enjoy. It is nothing more and nothing less.
I would recommend removing it for 30 days. If there are withdrawal symptoms it is something I would consider removing permanently because I don't like the idea of being addicted to anything.
I've gone close to a week without coffee (well I had one coffee one morning out of a possible 6) and while the first couple of days were hard I can honestly say I've noticed an improvement in my mood and overall energy levels. I generally used to have about 2 cups of coffee a day (which contained 2 expresso shots) and suffered from anxiety problems, poor memory for some reason and a general lack of focus. Quitting coffee forced me to sleep earlier guaranteeing at least 7 good hours of sleep so I would wake up refreshed. I was able to go into meetings less anxious, articulate (better) and generally feel less stressed. I guess quitting coffee / caffeine has a different affect on us all, but if you feel you need to make the change I recommend starting on a weekend when the tiredness has limited impact. I started on a Saturday of a Bank Holiday weekend so by the time I returned to work on the Tuesday I'd already acclimatised to life without coffee.... Tend to forget words less mid-sentence as well which was a worrying trait I've developed in the last year or so, beginning to think that also came from coffee induced lack of sleep or maybe poor hydration (coffee is dehydrating, quitting coffee naturally forces you to drink other water based drinks so the benefit here is two fold).
My experiment with this for 6 weeks benefited me nothing. It wasn't hard to quit my 1 cup/day, and I noticed no benefits from quitting. The slight draw back was that I was just slower to get going in the morning, even after 6 weeks off, which I decided wasn't worth it.
Been off any regular coffee/caffeine for about 2 weeks now, after a nice medical scare.
I decided; "to hell with it; go cold turkey and see what happens..."
So far, so good: I'm not experiencing any weird withdrawal symptoms or any discomfort. I find that surprising & interesting, as I drank A LOT of coffee in the morning and had done so for probably 40+ years.
At the same time, I made some conscious changes to my regular diet. I also work out every day on both a treadmill and with dumbbells. That said, I'm wondering if the fact I haven't experienced any negatives to the "Big Quit" might be attributed to the active exercise...I'm not about to quit exercising so I guess I'll never know. :) Obviously, a lot of this is mental...so your mileage may vary.
I agree with the general notion of giving the coffee abstinence 30 days or so - that's a good period of time to assess any difference...In my case, I have the feeling I'm doing the right thing. Want energy? Eat Oranges. I just love 'em.
NO!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I quit from time to time, and even get past my discomfort, but I still enjoy a cup (4-6 oz) every day. I also enjoy decaf coffee and tea later in the day. I have also struggled with the fake creamer affinity in the past, but it is now solved by using real heavy cream.
Hard to quit, mostly because I enjoyed the ritual of the making of it, grinding the beans, that rich smell of the grounds and the fresh brew, the warm cup in my hands when I got back in bed for a last few minutes before the start of the day. I finally succeeded by replacing it with a morning cup of home made bone broth instead. Similar ritual now to heat up the broth, etc. The results of not drinking it were: better sleep, much less generalized anxiety and irritation with people, a leveling out of daily energy and focus. Definite softening/smoothing of my facial skin (look more relaxed/calm). Also, did not realize that it was actually irritating my bladder, causing urgency when needing to urinate and difficulty waiting if needed. Water, broth, kombucha have no such effect, even when I drink a lot of them.
I gave up caffeine recently under medical instruction to help my chronic tinnitus. It has worked, ie it has reduced my tinnitus (there is no cure) AND I feel like i have a lot more "natural" energy - not limping from one caffeine shot to the next. So, I drink decaf coffee ,no black or green tea or ANYTHING with caffeine in. I feel far less tired and am sleeping better too.
It's been two weeks since I've been without coffee (I'm doing a 21 day cleanse - basically no grains/dairy/sugar/caffeine). And after the second day withdrawal symptoms I don't notice any positive difference. In fact I feel like my energy levels are lower,and I think I'm mildly depressed. I miss the feeling coffee gives me. I never was a heavy drinker, I'd have at most 2 cups a day. I'm really tempted to bring coffee back.. like now..
Came across this article and comments whilst doing some research into coffee and people's experiences of quiting. I have been embarking on a healthy eating/better lifestyle plan recently. Effectvely cutting out alcohol and smoking firstly, which then led to me realising it was probably worth making efforts elsewhere. So I started to look at my diet more closely. I have been eating very cleanly recently and realised but have still been bloated and tired/stressed and have realised that my 4-6 coffees a day (with milk) may be an obvious place to start!
From tomorrow I will just go with green tea. It is much milder then coffee so hoping that it will make the difference. Its the bloating that frustrates me the most, so hoping the green tea should be fine.
Are you guys differentiating between organic cold brew coffee and the god awful bitter stuff that I have no clue how people regularly consume it? Is there a difference?
I know it's bad but I can't help it! Coffee is a nice social habit and tastes good. When I try cold turkey I get a horrid withdrawal headache for a few days. Decaf is no substitute as it makes me dehydrated and my lips sore -- that's definitely not a good sign. One day I'll try quitting entirely but not just now.
Day 2 of for me going cold turkey and well, I'm doing very well. I started drinking Kombucha yesterday morning (about a cup) just to give me a lift and it's worked out fabulous I must say. One of the main reasons I gave up coffee was because I couldn't give up my flavored creamer. I tried the coconut milk, oil, heavy cream, half and half route and just couldn't tolerate it one way or another. I liked my morning ritual coffee and changing the way I made it just sucked, for lack of a better term.
As others have mentioned above, I also did it to get some stablization in my moods and well, just to feel better overall. I had given up coffee decades ago and remember after the initial 2 weeks or so, it was like a fog had been lifted - well, I want that fog to go away again.
I also have managed to time this just right as well to stop all wheat and sugar products - nothing like doing it all at once - kind of like ripping off a bandaid.
Anyway...I did a lot of reading on Kombucha and gave wanted to give it a try. So far I've been very impressed with it's affects on my body. It's really helped coming off the coffee (no headache!!) and has greatly improved my digestion - everything just feels more calm. I know I know, I may be giving up one vice for another, but a cup of kombucha tea in the morning has gotta be way better than the coffee addiction not to mention all the sugar and crap in the creamers I was addicted to as well.
I did a no-shave (irrelevant) and no-coffee November. (2011). It's Dec 15th and I still haven't drank coffee at all.
I have experienced no changes in energy and body composition. I was previously on one cup or one shot of espresso a day.
I don't crave it anymore either, but I do love the taste. Probably here and there, and then some. No reason to go extreme.
I gave up regular coffee for about a month by titrating down from full to all decaf. Didn't work out too well, felt like crap for a whole month, had no energy at all, worse started to make attention mistakes at work. Maybe I should try it again, looking at meret's answer, but, I don't want to mess things up at work.
It took me several months of reducing intake every day to finally get off coffee.
Several weeks later, I feel amazing. I would definitely recommend it and give it at least a week or two to evaluate how you really feel. It takes awhile to get rid of the habitual cravings for it even after the actual caffeine withdrawl is over.
The combination of quitting grains and coffee at the same time worked out well for me. I sleep better at night and wake up refreshed and ready to go. I yawn a lot less after stopping consumption of grains and coffee. I'm not sure how much is attributed to just the coffee alone.
my experience with quitting was during my healthy SAD days and it was just ugly!
i endured the first week knowing i would be a hateful @*#!, but when that continued past the third week it became apparent that my kids and the cat were planning a terrible accident for me, so coffee on!
and i only drink 2 cups a day when i first wake up. oh and i didn't find this effected my work outs at all.