Could you ever give up coffee? The mere thought of giving up that caffeine fix may be terrifying for some. Many people claim they can’t even start their day or function properly without a cup of coffee in hand. But is your beloved morning drink actually doing more harm than good? While it may be tasty and it may help wake you up, it does come with some negative side effects. Here are nine reasons why you should consider giving up coffee…
1. It increases stress hormones.
You may rely on that morning cup of Joe (and a second or third cup) to get you through your day, but drinking too much caffeine can wreak havoc on your body. Drinking caffeine actually triggers the release of cortisol, the stress hormone. In high doses, cortisol can result in inhibited brain function, slower metabolism, and more.
Don’t freak out just yet though because cortisol isn’t all bad. You do need it in order to function properly, but drinking the occasional coffee can cause a major boost in your body’s cortisol levels. Ultimately, the release of cortisol can leave you feeling more stressed than usual.
2. It’s not hydrating.
While it is a myth that coffee dehydrates you, it’s still not providing your body with the hydration it needs, especially in the morning. Your body actually gets dehydrated after a night’s sleep. When you wake up in the morning, you need to rehydrate. Giving your body the hydration it needs will energize you and leave you feeling ready to tackle the day. Coffee isn’t helping to replenish your body, but a morning glass of water will!
3. It can inhibit sleep.
The caffeine in your coffee doesn’t stay in your body for long. It takes about eight to 10 hours for most of the coffee to leave your system. However, if you’re drinking coffee or any other caffeinated drinks late in the day, you’re likely to see some major problems when bedtime comes around. Depending on your body, this late caffeine consumption can cause you to experience insomnia. And we all need our eight hours, right?
4. It’s highly addictive.
It should come as no surprise that coffee can actually be pretty addictive. If you’re drinking coffee on a regular basis, you can start to form a physical dependence for that morning caffeine fix. While it may not be as dangerous as alcohol or drugs, you can start to experience some withdrawal side effects if you stop drinking it abruptly. You might find you experience headaches, fatigue, anxiety, a depressed mood, or other symptoms. Breaking the coffee habit isn’t easy, but we do have some tips for that in a moment.
5. It stains your teeth.
Have your teeth been looking a little yellow lately? It could be a result of the coffee you’ve been drinking. Wanting your teeth to stay pearly white is one good reason to skip the daily cups of coffee.
6. It’s a diuretic.
Have you ever noticed that you make more frequent trips to the bathroom when drinking coffee? That’s because drinks containing caffeine have a mild diuretic effect. It turns out that caffeine relaxes the body’s detrusor muscles, which makes your bladder feel fuller more often. Your bladder becomes unable to hold large amounts of urine, which means more trips to the bathroom for you.
7. It’s empty calories.
It’s no secret that your body needs calories from food in order to function and give you the energy you need to get through the day. However, there is such a thing as “empty calories.” Empty calories are foods that have plenty of calories, but they aren’t filled with the nutrients your body craves.
Sweetened coffee drinks are actually nothing but empty calories because it’s not providing your body with the vitamins and minerals it needs to keep going. Instead, ditch the coffee and reach for a glass of water. If you want something more flavorful, go for fruit or vegetable juices with no added sugar.
8. It can increase your blood pressure.
Because caffeine is a stimulant, your cup of coffee can actually trigger your cardiovascular system. What does that mean for you? It can result in an increased heart rate and a higher blood pressure. Skipping your morning java will mean your heart stays at its normal pace and your blood pressure remains at its healthy level.
9. You’ll save money.
Let’s face it; your coffee indulgence is slowly putting a dent in your bank account. Stopping at your local coffee shop and handing over a few bucks may not seem like much in the moment, but it really adds up. Consider how much money you’re spending per week by purchasing your coffee, whether you’re buying it at the local shop or at the grocery store to make at home. When you realize just how much you’re spending, you’ll see that money could very well be put to use somewhere else.
How to Give Up Coffee
As mentioned above, giving up coffee can have some unpleasant side effects. It won’t be a fun road to cut out coffee completely, but we have some tips to help make it a little easier.
If you’re worried about the side effects, try weaning yourself off of coffee. This should cut down on the impact of the physical side effects you might experience. If you’re used to drinking two cups of coffee per day, limit yourself to one a day. Then, drop down to one coffee every other day and so on until you no longer crave that caffeine.
Alternatively, you could try the cold turkey method. Quit drinking coffee altogether and see how you feel. Find something else to replace your morning coffee that will still provide your body with an energy boost. Make yourself a smoothie with fresh fruits and nuts for some healthy protein and fiber. It’s a great way to start your day! You cold even try a glass of water with lemon to help wake you up in the morning. The water will rehydrate your body and leave you feeling energized.