Ever thought about quitting your daily cup(s) of coffee? I did and did it. For a long time, I never thought I could give up my morning ritual. I didn’t really think about how coffee was affecting my life negatively until a few months ago. I was working on a project that had me staying late and arriving early, with me too often turning to the liquid gold for inspiration. Immediately, I started to experience the symptoms of too much coffee. Restlessness, rapid heartbeat, tremors, and insomnia were just a few of the symptoms that had me reconsidering my coffee intake.
Yes, I overdid it on the coffee. Just because I overdid it, doesn’t make coffee bad — it does have some health benefits. But let’s be real — coffee can be addictive, which makes quitting even harder. And I didn’t realize how addicted I was until I tried to quit. For the first two weeks, I experienced withdrawal symptoms that almost made me want to never considered giving up the juice again. But as a result, I have experienced a lot of benefits that have improved my life.
Keep scrolling for what to expect when quitting coffee
The most immediate symptom were the headaches, and they were intense. When I stopped drinking my daily coffee, the blood flow to my brain suddenly increased. This is because caffeine slows down blood flow by constricting the blood vessels. This continued until my brain was able to adapt to the increased blood flow.
Low energy and mood
While dealing with the intense headaches, I became lathargic and very irritable. I no longer had that morning brew that I depended on to boost my energy levels and mood. This was definitely the worse part, beyond not feeling well, I was not a fun person to be around.
During the first couple days of no coffee, my brain constantly felt like it was buffering. My mental processing abilities seemed slower than dial up internet. My concentration became very poor, and my ability to focus on a task and quickly get it done was nonexistent. This killed my productivity at work and was the symptom that most made me want to start drinking coffee again.
Sleep quality improved
After surviving the withdrawal brain fog from no coffee, I started to experience the benefits. At night, I was not only able to fall asleep much quicker, but my quality of sleep improved. Waking up no longer felt like punishment, and I would wake up less groggy.
Because I was sleeping better, I was able to wake up early in the morning. I even made time to work out before work (without dragging myself to the gym!). Instead of spending my morning in bed lamenting a day of adulting, I would get up and get going with out the emotional turmoil.
No more afternoon crash
Before the withdrawal symptoms stopped, I felt like my entire day was one big afternoon crash. Once the fog cleared, I started to find other things that could get me through the afternoon crash. Instead of reaching for a cuppa joe, I would either take a walk outside (in the “fresh” air of NYC) or have a snack. I found that I didn’t really need coffee to get through the 2 to 3pm slump.
My skin definitely improved so much when I quit coffee, however, I’m unsure if the coffee was causing my skin issues. By not drinking coffee, I made better drink choices. In particular, I consumed much more water.
Should you give up coffee? Maybe. If you are considering cutting it out, learn from my mistakes and choose to reduce your coffee intake slowly. As you do, try to also find other ways you can boost your energy levels during the day. This will help ease the symptoms of withdrawal.
Also, just because you cut out coffee doesn’t mean you can never drink it again. Though I haven’t consumed my daily cup in 3 months, I still enjoy the occasional espresso or latte.