Quitting Coffee (support thread) - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 03-31-2006, 01:59 PM
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Wasn't sure where to put this, since it's not really a vegan/vegetarian issue.



Anyway. I've decided to try to give up coffee... again. The last time, I didn't make it very long since, soon after, I received some really good coffee as a prize and then jumped right back on the coffee bandwagon.



But I'm tired of being addicted. I only have one cup a day, but until I have that cup, I am a zombie. I hate waking up feeling grumpy, and having a headache if for some reason I can't have coffee within an hour.



Is anyone with me? Or have you done it? I'm on day two. For the first week, I'm having a cup of tea (with soymilk and sweetner), instead of coffee. I'll see how I feel the second week, and if it's going well, I'll switch to herbal tea. If not, I'll do another week and then have herbal tea the third.
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#2 Old 03-31-2006, 02:25 PM
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I stopped cold turkey. When I decided to give up diary, I didn't see much point drinking coffee anymore. I think I enjoyed the taste of coffee because of all the cream I put in it.

I just stop drinking it and started having carrot juice in the morning.

Much better for me.

I wish you luck and will be able to stop this time.
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#3 Old 03-31-2006, 02:26 PM
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I am right here with you, Elena. Coffee is hard for me to give up too. I've avoided it for almost a week so far, and I am drinking chai tea instead until my supplies of black chai run out. (3-4 weeks maybe.) Caffeine makes me irritable, makes my stomach upset, and aggravates my anxiety. So, I am already doing it, but let's ride together.
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#4 Old 03-31-2006, 07:21 PM
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Count me in. I've been making a feeble attempt to give up but haven't been able to make it past day one



I ran out of coffee the other night and decided I wouldn't buy anymore, but I had such a bad headache and a problem with concentration at work the next day, that I had to give in and have a cup....or 2....or 3
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#5 Old 03-31-2006, 10:25 PM
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Good luck, i'm not a coffee drinker but i cant funtion properly without diet coke. I start my day with a bagel and a diet coke... its pretty sad. I have tried cutting down to just two cans a day but its too hard. I'm really addicted to caffine but i guess thats what i get for having a dad who works for Coke
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#6 Old 03-31-2006, 11:23 PM
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I gave it up (for about the tenth time) just before Christmas and have managed to stay off of it really well this time!



I 'allow' myself one cup every two weeks or so, if I am insanely exhausted, but that's all...
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#7 Old 04-01-2006, 12:46 AM
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Ugh, coffee. I use to love trying it when I was little and making it while my parents weren't home. Now I don't like it much. Not even the French Vanilla flavoured kind, which I use to love. It just leaves an annoying after taste, and it sort of gives me a headache.



Unless you drink it to keep you awake and alert during the day, I don't think you should let it be a craving. So I hope you can fight it.
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#8 Old 04-01-2006, 03:31 AM
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Caffeine is one of the toughest addictions to break. It's everywhere, and it's socially acceptable (it's even LEGAL!). It is the most widely used drug in the world. It's consumed by rich, poor, black, white, brown, purple, liberal, conservative, and just about everyone else. There MIGHT be a few aboriginal cultures that don't have a long history of caffeine consumption but everyone else is drinking it by the gallon.



I work in a coffee shop, so I can't even imagine going off caffeine these days. I've done it before, and when my anxiety issues are acting up, I have to limit myself, but for now... my catchphrase is "when in doubt, drink more coffee".



coffee rules!

Nec Aspera Terrent
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#9 Old 04-01-2006, 05:01 AM
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I love coffee, and don't plan on giving it up, but good luck all!
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#10 Old 04-01-2006, 09:43 AM
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You could try blending yourself down with decaf over time.



Lately, when I make coffee at work, I use 1/2 regular and 1/2 decaf, those people don't need any more caffeine!



At home, I've started buying a really good quality decaf, the taste is everything I want without the jitters later.



I've probably reduced my caffeine intake by about 75% in the last 3 months.
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#11 Old 04-01-2006, 09:50 AM
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I'm trying to give up coffee right now. I gave it up cold turkey a few years ago, but winter came along and I felt like that hot cup of coffee. I didn't realize how physically addicted I was until late winter when I had the flu. Even though I knew I shouldn't have coffee while having the flu, I couldn't not drink my morning cup because then I felt even worse. When I gave it up cold turkey before, it was awful. I had headaches and nausea for a week, and would stand up and feel my head spinning and get dizzy. Or sometimes if I turned my head fast I'd have that thing where my vision blurred. I couldn't imagine what people on hard drugs trying to get off must feel like.



I decided to do things differently this time, and am getting off coffee a little at a time. First was to give up the afternoon infusion of caffeine, which was I think the hardest part. Now i'm working on the morning cup. I'm down to a quarter cup in the morning and don't feel like I 'have' to finish it. When I am done with this 'program'...I plan to get some decaff to have when I feel the need for the coffee 'taste' in the mornings. But I think I'll be happy not to HAVE to have a cup every day.



B
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#12 Old 04-01-2006, 09:52 AM
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One thing that really inpsired me when I was trying to give it up and was about to give up giving it up , was this guy on pbs, who layed out how bad it is that in our society we've become addicted to so MANY substances. Coffee being one of them. Essentially we need coffee because we insist on living such fast paced lives and surviving on too little sleep. I've been thinking instead about taking a nap when I'm tired....making sure I'm drinking enough water and eating well. It has really helped me to be more concious of my health in general. Which is good.



B
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#13 Old 04-01-2006, 09:58 AM
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Good to see other people are doing it, too.



Sauteed, did you have any problems giving it up like that? I've heard that doing that can give you a lot of headaches, shakes, etc.



Day 3 now, and I feel a little better, but I'm still drinking my morning tea. The skin on my face is less blotchy, so that's good.



Veg, have you tried switching to other sweet drinks first, like lemonade or juice? I've heard of that working.
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#14 Old 04-01-2006, 10:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elena99 View Post


Veg, have you tried switching to other sweet drinks first, like lemonade or juice? I've heard of that working.



Yah, last summer i did a 'switch' to crystal light. It would have been ok but i went through a pitcher a day and i had blood work done for a school physical and it turned out i had high potassium levels. Doctor said it might be from the crystal light so i cut it out of my diet and sure enough my potassium levels dropped. Seems i tend to over do everything
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#15 Old 04-01-2006, 10:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Elena99 View Post

Is anyone with me? Or have you done it? I'm on day two. For the first week, I'm having a cup of tea (with soymilk and sweetner), instead of coffee. I'll see how I feel the second week, and if it's going well, I'll switch to herbal tea. If not, I'll do another week and then have herbal tea the third.



you drinking tea to get a milder caffeine dose to prevent headaches? because some teas can be as strong as coffee...well of course it depends on how you made your coffee.



i've quit coffee before a couple times, but have to wean myself or i'll get really crappy headaches.



I don't think coffee is too bad for us though. imo the worst aspect of coffee is the calcium leeching effect it has, but there have been some interesting studies regarding coffee's use as a powerful antioxidant.



I lift weight a couple times a week (which signifigantly increases bone density) so for me i'm judging my risk of osteoperosis to be low, and coffee ok.
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#16 Old 04-01-2006, 10:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Romac View Post

you drinking tea to get a milder caffeine dose to prevent headaches? because some teas can be as strong as coffee...well of course it depends on how you made your coffee.





Yup, I get headaches if I don't get caffeine in the morning. I always made my coffee myself (and make my tea myself), so I've gone from medium strength coffee to medium strength tea, roughly. No headaches yet, though I felt incredibly tired the first day.



I know coffee isn't really that bad for you, I just don't like that I'm addicted. It's also obviously messing with my skin, since it always magically gets better when I stop coffee.
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#17 Old 04-01-2006, 12:35 PM
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I stopped drinking coffee when I started taking some medications. I had horrible withdrawal symptoms. headaches, lethargy, irritability. It sucked. I stopped taking the meds instead.
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#18 Old 04-02-2006, 08:05 AM
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I am on my first day of NO caffeine. I'm having a cup of decaff this morning. We'll see how it goes. I think I've done this gradually enough that I may not notice the difference.



B
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#19 Old 04-02-2006, 05:48 PM
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lol these targeted ads are funny



"so fresh you can warm your hands on the bag! SpecialtyJava.com"



if we start an "AA" support thread we'll see Johnny Walker ads! lol
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#20 Old 04-02-2006, 08:26 PM
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You could always to half and half coffee until you step down from being addicted to caffine. have 3/4 caffine and 1/4 noncaffinated coffee today, then 1/2 caffinated and 1/2 uncaffinated tomorow, and take it as slowly as you nead to. After your over the caffine addiction, quitting noncaffinated coffee will be much easier. And remember to follow through in everything else: don't drink caffinated soft drinks, don't eat chocolate etc.



And, BTW, tee often has caffine in it. double check that your tee is caffine free!



Or, you could always go hard-core. If you went veg*n over night, then this shouldn't be much of a problem. Headachs are common when a caffien addict trys to quit, also, you will probably crave it and feel really tired and "down" without it. If you last through the first two weeks, you're set! Just don't last the two weeks, then pick up a cup next month. If your really going to change your life, then you need to stay away from caffine for a few months, then you can have it in moderation. I quit caffine for 3 weeks, drank a coke, and was rehooked. I quit caffine for 3-4 months, drank a coke, and actually threw it away after half the bottle, I just couldn't handle the jittery feeling I was getting.



Good luck! with whatever method you choose!
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#21 Old 04-03-2006, 07:34 PM
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That's good advice, Jen, but it wouldn't do for me; it took me about a year to go from "semi-veg" to vegan, I'm not the best at quick transitions.



I had three flights today (traveled from US to Canada), and have been up since about 6am, so it was VERY hard. I just had my one cup of tea in the morning, though, as much as I wanted to stop into a cafe. I doubt any of them had soymilk, anyway, and black coffee isn't tempting enough.
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#22 Old 04-08-2006, 08:44 AM
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I went without coffee all week and today I'm having a cup of decaff because I woke up early and it seemed to be a good idea what with the spring rain and the doors open. I'm really happy with it. My sleeping patterns have changed some...including that I'm actually sometimes more energetic at bedtime and have a more difficult time getting to sleep. but I've also found that once I go to sleep, I have very vivid dreams now...very colorful and full of different things that are happening in my life. Also the first day completely off caffeine I went to sleep in one position and didn't wake up all night. I'm noticing that more...that I sleep much better, remember dreams I have and in general wake up feeling much better.



I still have some chocolate, though I've cut down on that and don't feel like it as much. But the first few weeks I was cutting back, I remember in the afternoons I would feel like scouring the kitchen cabinets in my classroom looking for old tea bags or any chocolate products that had been left behind. I really did seriously feel like an addict several days...one day I drove straight from school to starbucks, drank down a frappicinno in about three minutes and then felt awful with stomach cramps etc. I am glad it's over.



B
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#23 Old 04-08-2006, 09:00 AM
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That's great, bethanie. Do you notice any changes in your mood in the day?



I'm finding that's what's getting me the most. I'm on herbal tea today, but during the past week when I've had caffeinated tea, I've been generally depressed, irritable and grumpy. It might be just my situation, though.
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#24 Old 04-08-2006, 11:36 AM
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Yes I have. For the most part I'm more even without the caffeine. With the caffeine I was fine after my morning coffee and for a while in the morning...then when the effects started wearing off I was grumpy...then after lunch coffee fine again...then by four or so, grumpy. Now the only change i notice in my body is the hunger factor (meaning I get hungry at lunch and at around four, but my mood doesn't suddenly swing downhill)...instead of being pulled up and down by the siren song of caffeine, I'm more on an even keel.



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#25 Old 04-08-2006, 12:04 PM
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I used to drink it by the pot. Now I drink a few cups a day-- but those cups are as big as the pot was. I was thinking that I would quit soon too. I think I will switch to a hot cup of nutritional yeast-- It has a more "breakfasty" feel to it. Or how about sucking on a piece of coffee flavored hard candy? It will give you the taste you want without all the bad stuff?
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#26 Old 04-08-2006, 12:23 PM
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This is interesting: How many read the email that said an Apple will wake you up faster/better than coffee?



There are two things that get you up in the morning:

adrenalin and glucose. In the morning, after a likely 10

hours without food, blood glucose is at an all-time low.

We are designed to wake up by light, stimulating the brain,

which boosts adrenalin and raises blood sugar and you

from horizontal to vertical. However, the more stimulants

a person consumes the more insensitive they become to

adrenalin. This is called downregulation and is akin to

becoming partially deaf to adrenalins wake-up call.

So whats the way out of this vicious cycle of addiction to

stimulants and chronic fatigue? The answer is essentially

a primates guide to living in the 21st century.



Wake up with light

You will wake up better if you wake up to natural light.

Im not suggesting camping, but thick curtains that exclude

all light arent good news. If you dont fancy starting your

day shortly after dawn invest in a Lumie BodyClock.

You set the time and it simulates dawn, waking you up with

light rather than an alarm [dont worry theres an alarm

as well in case all else fails]. Quite simply, it works.

You sleep better and wake up more alert.

http://www.lumie.com/bodyclocks/index.htm[£59.99]

(US dealer http://www.biobrite.com/products.php...nRise%20Clocks )



Eat three meals, two snacks and low GI foods

Theres truth to the saying Breakfast like a king, lunch like

a prince, dine like a pauper. Eating protein with slow-releasing

carbohydrates stabilizes blood sugar levels, with

breakfast being the most important meal.



Eating foods with a low glycemic load or gl

score, will keep your blood sugar level, and

energy, more stable. GL's of 10 or below

are considered low, and 20 or above are considered

high.
The worst would be coffee with sugar

and croissant for breakfast, bananas as snacks, white bread

sandwich for lunch and white pasta or rice for dinner. These

are all fast-releasing sugars, which means your blood glucose

peaks and troughs quickly, leaving you tired in the

aftermath. Sugar, of course, is bad news.



ETA: here are some links to GL index -- http://www.fatfreekitchen.com/glycem...ex-values.html

http://www.mendosa.com/gilists.htm

http://www.nutritiondata.com/glycemic-index.html





The craving for caffeine is nothing more than a response to low blood sugar. It takes three to four days for the body to upregulate and develop

increased sensitivity to your own home-made natural stimulant, adrenalin.



Swap caffeine for natural stimulants

If you still need a boost, especially during the first week

off caffeine, you can do it the natural way. The body makes

adrenalin and its cousins, the feel-good neurotransmitters

dopamine and noradrenalin, directly from an amino acid

called tyrosine. Supplementing 1,000mg of actual tyrosine

on an empty stomach or with some carbohydrate such as

a piece of fruit gives a positive lift.
Well worth it in the

week youre quitting caffeine.



In addition to tyrosine there are a number of

adaptogenic herbs. These include Asian ginseng, Siberian

ginseng, Reishi mushrooms and Rhodiola.While Rhodiola

was a favourite in Siberia, Reishi mushroom is one of the

most respected tonics in Chinese medicine. In Asia it has

been revered for as long as 5,000 years. These herbs are

called adaptogens because they help to even out and

maintain normal levels of another energy-giving adrenal

hormone called cortisol. These are all available as herbal

supplements however you can also find them combined

with tyrosine, for example, in Higher Natures Awake

Food Formula, available in health food stores and at

the Cultivate Centre.



---------------------

Personally, I have not given up coffee. However, the more I read and hearing your stories makes me want to consider it. I haven't been drinking coffee everyday lately. I find I feel better if I drink a vegetable drink in the morning.



I bought GreensFirst http://store.yahoo.com/bodybuilding-qfac/grfiwewa.html

It's a little expensive, but tastes pretty good. Sometimes I'll add apple juice (100% juice) or some other natural juice to it. I do recommend it though.
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#27 Old 04-08-2006, 12:46 PM
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I completely gave up caffiene about four months ago. What a hard thing to do! I was having gobs of it in coffee and crappy diet sodas. Ive replaced it with decaf coffee, lots of water and decaf/green teas. The best thing that has come from this?? My PMS is practically non-existent now!! I started this month without ANY warning signs AT ALL!! It was amazing!! I'm also not getting the heart palpatations that caused me to stop it in the first place. Caffiene is the devil!!
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#28 Old 04-08-2006, 12:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Romac View Post

I don't think coffee is too bad for us though. imo the worst aspect of coffee is the calcium leeching effect it has, but there have been some interesting studies regarding coffee's use as a powerful antioxidant.



I lift weight a couple times a week (which signifigantly increases bone density) so for me i'm judging my risk of osteoperosis to be low, and coffee ok.



As I understand it, this is NOT from drinking coffee. This antioxidant property is from inhaling the aroma in the first 30 minutes that the coffee is brewed.



Quote:
A scientific report from the University of California found that the steam rising from a cup of coffee contains the same amount of antioxidants as three oranges. The antioxidants are heterocyclic compounds which prevent cancer and heart disease. Inhale deeply.

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#29 Old 04-08-2006, 03:08 PM
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I've heard that drinking decaf will put a person at higher risk for Parkinson's? Has anyone heard of this?



I quit coffee, but I had help. My carafe broke (ok, cracked a little bit) and I haven't had any coffee since except for the rare times I'm out to breakfast.



Before quitting, I would have maybe 6-7 cups of coffee in the morning.



I still drink my teas, but the panel says they're only 45mg caffiene and I only have one a day (when I can remember it ). A cup of drip coffee contains 90mg caffiene and expresso is much higher (I think 120mg or so).



So for those giving up coffee or even the cokes: it's sooooo worth it! It's hard, yes, but the rewards FAR outweight the sacrafices by a LONG SHOT and believe me, you'll be sooooo happy you did this for yourself - you'll feel like you're walking on light!!!



You can do it, you determinted quitters (especially you, elena99)! I'm proud of you all.
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#30 Old 04-09-2006, 04:33 PM
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You'll of course have to pry my coffee from my cold dead hands, but I would like to cut down a bit, to two modest sized cups a day. Right now I'm sipping a heavenly brew from a GIANT mug and I really should stop that. But at present I often get home from work after 3 am and it's messing with me pretty bad. I don't feel ready just yet...but I gave up robusta years ago so that must count for something.



Congrats to everyone who has made some progress!
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