Wednesday, 21 July 2010

Do I miss caffeine? Not at all!

I had a lovely comment yesterday from a reader who was interested in someone else’s journey to live without caffeine. They were wondering how I was doing. Was I still caffeine free or had those green teas edged their way back in to my life?

I can report that I am 100% caffeine free and have been for about 10 months. I might occasionally accept a chocolate if it was offered to me, but I never drink coffee or tea. After I finished the London 10k I had a bottle of iced tea thrust into my hands and I admit I made an exception. I was too tired, too polite, and too much in need of a cold drink to refuse. But it’s the first caffeinated drink I’ve had since I don’t know when. And I have no intention of making caffeine part of my diet again.

But you know the strangest part? I don’t miss it at all. Not a bit. I’m sure I would enjoy a cup of green tea if I drank it, but the cravings have completely gone and I just don’t think about it anymore. When asked if I would like a cup of tea or coffee I now automatically answer that I’d like a peppermint or herb tea. I don’t have to think about it: that’s what I drink.

It’s a little like going vegetarian (or fishetarian in my case). It’s difficult at first, but once it has become a habit and you start to enjoy the benefits, it just stops being an issue.

I know there are many people who are thinking about, or have started to give up caffeine. I guess everyone has their own individual reasons. But for me, I’m glad I did it. I find I am calmer for living without caffeine (I never get that jittery sensation I used to have) and if I do get a headache, at least I know it’s not due to overdosing on caffeine. And I think I get fewer headaches overall. I also sleep better for not drinking caffeine.

This isn’t necessarily a recommendation to go caffeine-free. Some people happily drink tea and coffee and suffer no ill effects. I know some people who can have a cup of coffee in the evening and have no concerns about their sleep. But I wasn’t one of them. And the reading I did around the subject convinced me that it was a drug I could live without. So I do. Happily.


  1. Michael Dempsey22 July 2010 at 10:02

    There is that wonderful moment when one comes in from something busy - say a rehearsal. And one just knows that the one thing that will add to life's joys is a cup of tea. Then there is the choice of tea. And finally one has a mug in one's hand and the anticipation of a sip. The old advert used to go 'tea, the cheering cup.' My sentiments exactly. I wouldn't give that up for the world.

  2. Your comment brings a smile to my lips. A cup of tea is as British as, well a cup of tea. Times of happiness and crisis all require a cuppa. You are lucky you can enjoy yours with the caffeine. Peppermint tea cheers just as much now I have got used to it, but totally accept its not quite the same :-).