I was talking to someone in work about coffee drinking. I mentioned how great it is for firing up the system when needed. She drinks five or six cups a day. She has one in the evening too, a few hours out from bedtime.
I’ve only met a few people who drink that much coffee. I gave up coffee for seven days. Going cold turkey wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. The headaches were real too. I never expected the withdrawal to be as strong.
So, one and a half months in I’m at about three cups of coffee a week, probably less on average. It’s quite a drop from two per day. I think I have found a pretty good spot with caffeine intake, which is occasionally added to with a cup of tea.
The Advantages of Drinking Less Coffee
In my experience. Don’t get me wrong either, I still love coffee.
#1 It Works When You Really Need It
It’s 3:30pm on a hot and stuffy mid-summer afternoon in the office. The code on the screen wants to be read as a logical pattern but your brain is stuck somewhere between tinned spaghetti and wool. A well-timed coffee will really help in this situation or any other number of situations. Because your system is not entirely resistant to the caffeine, it works better.
#2 It’s Easier to Get Up Early
I cycle 8 miles to work every morning. I feel noticeably fresher in the mornings when I’m not regularly drinking two cups of coffee a day. This makes some sense, as regularly drinking coffee means a higher workload on the adrenal glands.
The boost I got from coffee, especially regularly daily drinking, seemed to inversely translate into tiredness the next morning. A kick to get back to zero.
Which meant more coffee of course.
But, people who chronically stress their adrenal glands to overproduce cortisol change their cortisol concentrations so that it’s low instead of high when they wake up in the morning.
Of course, then they reach for a cup of coffee to artificially spike their cortisol levels again. Dr Jesse Chappus
#3 It Saves Time And Money
All those €2.50-3 coffees. Let’s say you buy seven coffees a week. That’s about €910 a year. That’s a holiday – for me anyway.
Let’s say you spend 10 minutes a day getting that coffee. That’s 3,650 minutes, or an entire day per year.
You stop thinking about coffee so much.
#4 You’ll Substitute Something Healthy In Its Place
Let’s face it, you are unlikely to be reading this if you are planning to substitute Red Bull or liquor in place of your daily coffee habit.
There’s nothing fundamentally unhealthy with coffee as far as I’m aware – everything in moderation (including moderation!) and all that. An alternative hot drink will probably take its place though.
Green tea is a good one, yerba mate, herbal teas etc etc – this (probably not so healthy) Polish drink is a favourite of mine.
Or just drink more water. Coffee is supposedly a diuretic.
#5 A Change is as Good As A Rest
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s proverb ‘a change is as good as a rest’ is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as
A change of work or occupation can be as restorative or refreshing as a period of relaxation
Changing a habit can be just that too.