Coffee…is it your friend or your foe or can it be both? I’ve just completed 31 days coffee-free, why oh why you may ask!

But there is method to my madness...this is why:

  1. Coffee had become an addiction for me (mostly only one coffee a day but I had to have it!)
  2. Coffee was making me anxious, yep...totally jittery once past that lovely energy buzz.
  3. Coffee buzz would crash out with me along with it in the afternoon and I would feel exhausted!
  4. It was creating a false “Superwoman effect”, because I was able to push through to get the job done but then be absolutely wiped out afterward and even the day after (and I would need another coffee the next day to “get going’!)…sound familiar mammas??
  5. Coffee would suppress my appetite so I would skip lunch then my blood sugar would crash, adding to the afternoon crash.
  6. Some days I was getting strange digestive issues after my morning coffee, which isn’t like me.
  7. I got sick of spending my days running to the toilet for yet another wee!
  8. It was costing me a fortune!

Can you relate?
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms from coffee I'm here to help! (except I can't help with #8 LOL!!) Jump in an book a consult here

If you don’t drink coffee but have caffeine in other forms such as black tea, green tea, chocolate, energy drinks, hot chocolate, cocoa or cacao you may also be experiencing these symptoms.
So how much caffeine is really in my coffee?
150ml Espresso: 90mg, 150ml Percolated 100mg - 150mg, 150ml Instant60mg - 100mg. Compared with 150ml tea 30-100mg and 150ml decaf 2mg-4mg (always ask for Swiss water method with Decaf, others use various solvents to extract the caffeine). 

What is caffeine doing to my body?
Caffeine impacts your nervous system as a stimulant; therefore it can have an impact on energy, sleep and mood. Due to it’s diuretic effects it can deplete your body of essential nutrients such as magnesium, potassium, chloride and sodium as well as B vitamins. These nutrients are key to help produce our energy and balance our moods so you can see that if they are depleted so will we be!
Caffeine can also effect your neurotransmitter activity in the brain such as dopamine and noradrenaline.

Your adrenals can be affected by caffeine and this can be what pushes us into what I call “False Superwoman Mode”…as your adrenals are stimulated they pump out more adrenalin and more cortisol which in turn gives you (what should be short term) energy, but add stress into the mix and rushing from work to pick up the kids constantly day after day…you’ll soon be exhausted…and continue this pattern month after month and you’ll soon be in adrenal fatigue (HPA axis dysfunction) and soon…burnout! If you need some great stress management tips check out my 5 top tips blog here

So you see it’s not an easy…”yes, coffee is your friend” or no, coffee is you foe”, it can entirely depend on what else is happening in your life; which is why I always take a holistic and individualized approach when I have a naturopathic consult with a busy mum.

Tips to have a break from coffee but not break up

  1. Set a time limit...I found 31 days was great...but maybe even start with 7 days.
  2. Re-frame it...instead of it being about the coffee, I made it a self-discipline challenge! Gosh if I can give a up coffee I can do anything!
  3. Have yummy substitutes ready...Green tea, Chai tea, Turmeric lattes, Kombucha, Bone broth...the choices are endless.
  4. Switch to Swiss Water extracted decaf or have a single shot every second day or only when out on a coffee date instead of “drinking alone”. 🙂
  5. Try an Americano instead of a latte because maybe it’s that big bowl of milk that has got your tummy all upset.
  6. Journal or diary how you are feeling...this can help you work through why you want or need to have a break.
  7. Change your routine...drive a different way to work if it means avoiding your favourite cafe!

Be aware; it’s common to have withdrawal effects such as headaches, irritability and fatigue. These should pass in a day or two, in the mean time make sure you are well hydrated.

I've had two coffees so far this month and the first one still had a long caffeine buzz so I've decided to either have a single shot every second day...while working on my liver to help detox and process the caffeine more efficiently and move things along.

My favourite things to help the liver are:

  1. Lots of cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, kale, cauliflower, cabbage, cress. Because crucifers are multi-taskers–in addition to supporting both phases of detoxification, they also contain potent antioxidants and reduce inflammation–they are uniquely poised to play a key role in supporting energy production, preventing cancer, and reducing the risk for autoimmune disease.
  2. Drinking 2 litres of filtered water a day...start your day with a big glass of water with a teaspoon of Apple Cider Vinegar. If you are not used to drinking 2 litres a day build up to this amount slowly, then you will avoid the constant trips to the toilet! 600mls a day for the first week, then increase to 1 litre the next week etc... Use a water tracking app can be helpful!
  3. Liver Herbs are great support liver function, they can be a bit of a challenge due to the bitter taste, however there is the option of good-quality practitioner-only capsules that avoid this! My favourite medicinal  herbs are Dandelion, St Mary's Thistle and Globe Artichoke. I can make up liquid herb formulas in clinic as part of your Wellness Plan.

You can grab you FREE 3 Day Meal Plan for Busy Mum’s Energy Boost by signing up here!
If you are feeling wired but tired and want some help finding your path back to energy without the coffee crash book a FREE 20 minute Discovery Call so we can discuss your situation or jump in and book an Initial Naturopathic Consult and let’s get you from False Superwoman to Real Superwoman (that I know you already are!)

Written by Naturopath and Gut Health Specialist - Jane McClurg

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