When I first was told I needed to give up caffeine for a week, my first thought was there is no way I will be able to get through a week without caffeine. As I thought about it more, I realized the overall impact it would have on my life and decided I should continue a caffeine-free diet. Medical reasons weren’t my only motive, but wanting to be healthier and the realization of my long-lived caffeine addiction.
Recently I was informed I would need to stay away from caffeine for a week due to a medical test. Having been freely able to take in as much caffeine as I wanted previously, I was scared to death. My appointment kept switching, extending my caffeine-free period. I’m planning on keeping this caffeine-free diet so if any other situations come up, I won’t have to start the caffeine cleansing process again.
Over time, I noticed myself becoming addicted to caffeine. I have always loved soda, so once I reached adulthood I would find myself drinking a soft drink with every meal. Then in high school, I found myself starting to drink coffee with my parents every weekend, so I would have enough energy to finish my homework, as well as work and stay awake later in the day. Once in college, as a nursing student, I found survival without coffee was not possible. At this point, I was working 35 hours a week, trying to juggle being a full-time student, a relationship with my boyfriend, and time with friends. My days started at 5am and ended by midnight. As the years passed, my boyfriend would bring me coffee every morning and we would sit and chat during my work breaks. Now, my work schedule is early mornings; sometimes nights into the early mornings, in which I find myself reaching for a little caffeine pick-me-up.
Coffee and sodas aren’t the only caffeine culprit, it’s everywhere you turn; however, my biggest weakness is chocolate. Giving up caffeine not only will help me break an addiction, but also to lose weight. By saying no to the chocolate candy bar every time in the grocery store, that’s 90 calories I am cutting out of my diet. Each can of soda has 160 calories, so by not drinking soda, I have narrowed my diet by 570 calories. That’s an entire meal! The calorie reduction isn’t the only health benefit, as cutting out caffeine will provide me with an overall healthier diet, in which I will start to feel better.