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Is it possible to do without caffeine?

by Sonia Chartier, on 2 December 2015, Healthy Eating
caffeine

Are you one of those people who drink a cup of coffee as soon as they wake up? If so, you may be surprised to learn that, contrary to popular thinking, this habit could lower your alertness. The fact is that caffeine curbs the secretion of cortisol, and a lack of this hormone leads to drowsiness.

Would you like to overcome this bad habit and limit your consumption of caffeine? Here are a few tips that will help you put caffeine behind you.

Cortisol is a hormone that regulates your natural day-to-night rhythm and ensures that you will feel awake and alert in the morning. When you go to bed, the quantity of cortisol decreases and you go to sleep. If you always drink coffee at breakfast, your body will produce less cortisol. From then on, you will have more and more difficulty waking up properly, and your need for coffee will intensify… a vicious circle.

Dependence

If you frequently consume caffeine at the times when your body produces a lot of cortisol, your body is likely to develop a tolerance of that substance. This explains why people who drink large amounts of coffee feel the effects of caffeine less and less. In the long term, caffeine can even become a substitute for cortisol. At that point, without a cup of coffee you will no longer be able to achieve the degree of alertness you need.

Combating tiredness in the afternoon

Throughout the day, your body’s cortisol content will fluctuate up and down. If your natural cortisol level is low and you still want to be productive, you can go ahead and have a cup of coffee. Between the peaks of cortisol, coffee will still have a stimulating effect.

Your biorhythm determines the ups and downs of your cortisol production. Generally speaking, it is preferable to refrain from drinking coffee before 10:00 a.m., because that is when your body produces the most cortisol.

Calling it quits with caffeine

You may be saying to yourself, “All this is well and good, but I can no longer do without my morning cup of coffee!” If so, we have some tips for you. They will help you reduce your consumption of caffeine at your own pace.

  1. Make a conscious decision to stop

Dependence is often based on habit. For example, people who smoke will often light up a cigarette without thinking about it. It’s exactly the same with caffeine. You often pour yourself a cup of coffee even though you don’t really want it, but simply out of habit – at the end of a meal, for instance.

By making a conscious decision to stop drinking coffee and by being convinced of the reasons why you are stopping, you will increase your chances of succeeding.

  1. Be prepared

As you reduce your caffeine consumption, you will gradually be faced with “withdrawal symptoms”. Forewarned is forearmed: it is best to know what to expect. These signs may appear after a few hours, or over a few days. Their duration varies from one person to another; they may last from one day, to two weeks:

  • Headache
  • Mental Fatigue
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Physical fatigue
  • Flu-like symptoms
  1. Set your goal and follow your own pace

Decide in advance what your goal is and how quickly you want to reach it. You normally drink four cups of coffee per day? Then you could consider drinking just three cups per day during the first week. Then, during the second week, you eliminate another cup. And so on, until you have reached your goal.

Is your goal to eliminate coffee altogether, or to reduce your consumption of it? It is up to you. The important thing is that you should feel well, and that your goal be attainable.

  1. Make your life easier

Getting rid of well entrenched habits is no simple matter. You can make things easier by modifying your habits slightly instead of changing them completely. For example, instead of drinking a cup of coffee in the morning, you can opt for a delicious cup of herbal tea or a coffee substitute.

Bambu from A.Vogel is a mild drink with a taste resembling that of coffee. It is characterized by its delicate flavour and velvety texture.

Thanks to its original Swiss recipe of 100% natural organic ingredients, Bambu combines the subtle, bittersweet and creamy taste of chicory with that of grains, acorns and sun-dried Turkish figs. Bambu is delicious at any time of day, served hot or cold, either in water, or in milk for a creamier texture.

Organic, vegan and GMO free, Bambu contains no caffeine and therefore has no effect on your cortisol production. In addition, it is gentle on the heart and nervous system, to help you maintain your inner balance!

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