Caffeine addiction and excess consumption of caffeine can heighten anxiety, cause insomnia and make you jittery. Excess caffeine is also linked to depression, heart problems, arrhythmia and strokes. In addition to sodas and caffeinated beverages, there are many other hidden sources of caffeine which people tend to overlook. Many herbal teas, migraine pills, weight loss supplements, chocolate and breath fresheners also contain caffeine. Today, we will consider some easy ways to cure caffeine addiction.
1. Ease into it
When you plan to give up caffeine, you must do so gradually. Start by reducing your intake to 2 small cups per day. After a few days, bring down your intake to 1 small cup. When you do drink a bit of coffee, do so purposefully instead of mindlessly. Stay in control. Occasional intake will not hurt as long as you limit it and stay in control. You can also first switch to black tea which has several more health benefit than coffee. Gradually switch to green tea which contains much less caffeine compared to sodas and regular coffee. Yerba Matė is another great alternative to coffee and contains a distant cousin of caffeine which is not as stimulating. In order to curb your caffeine addiction, try decaffeinated coffee. It is a great alternative to coffee and can be your life saver when trying to curb caffeine addiction.
The urge to drink coffee strikes when you are working, stressed or anxious. So rest for a bit when you feel like having coffee. Take a short nap if possible. Listen to some music. Meditate.
Distracting yourself is the easiest way to overcome any addiction. Call up a friend, watch a good movie or go out for a walk or jog. Read something interesting.
4. Handle the withdrawal symptoms
Caffeine withdrawal can lead to migraines and headaches. Handle these with some herbal pills or a couple of Aspirins. Gradual caffeine withdrawal can prevent headaches.
5. Drink some milk chocolate
Milk chocolate contains lesser caffeine and hot chocolate can also help you sleep better.
6. Take Ginseng and Gingko
Ginseng extracts increase blood flow to the brain and reduce depression, stress and anxiety. Take a pill of Ginseng (consult your doctor first) when you are trying to overcome caffeine addiction. This remedy will help stimulate your brain, improve memory, alertness, concentration and other cognitive functions. Gingko boosts circulation to increase mental alertness so you do not feel the temptation to drink coffee.
7. Try Dandelion and chicory ‘coffee’
Dig up dandelion and chicory roots and wash them well to remove dirt. Slice the roots lengthwise and dry them in the sun. Once dry roast them in low oven at about 200 degrees for 4 hours until brown and crisp. Store them in a clean, dry jar. To steep a cup, add one tsp of dried herbs and a cup of boiling water over it. Let it infuse for 10 minutes. You can also make a decoction in the coffee machine as you normally make coffee.
Also drink green barley juice to energize your body in the morning.
8. Eat fruits
Fruits and grapes, apples and oranges contain fructose, a natural sugar. When the urge to drink coffee strikes, snack on these fruits.
9. Iced tea
Iced tea is cooling, refreshing and low in calories.
10. Detoxify or cleanse
Do a cleansing fast. Drink water, soups, herbal teas and smoothies. This will clean out your system from caffeine overload. Also eat more fruits and vegetables. During the fast, curb your intake of processed foods, meat, refined flours etc. Take nettle tea to clean out intestines that are harmed by excess coffee intake.
11. Exercise regularly
Exercise first thing in the morning to increase mental alertness. Aerobic exercises like jogging and swimming increase mental alertness and keep your body fit and active. They also provide long term alertness and focus.
12. Sleep earlier
If you have problem starting your day without coffee, sleep earlier and get at least 8-10 hours of sleep. In the afternoon, a power nap of 20 minutes can help. At night, drink some chamomile tea to help you sleep better.
Diffuse some essential oils to distract you from the coffee smells brewing in your office pantry. Use oils like cardamom, lemon, peppermint, juniper, sandalwood or Jasmine. At home, soak in a bath with treated with one of these oils to energize your body and help you relax when you experience caffeine withdrawal symptoms.
14. Start your morning with hot water and lemon juice
First thing in the morning, drink a glass of warm water and lemon juice and honey in place of coffee. This will reduce your need for coffee and also encourage bowel movement.
15. Snack on high protein snacks
If your energy seems to go down during the day, add some protein rich energy bars to your diet. Also chew on some sunflower seeds or nuts to curb afternoon caffeine craving.
16. Practice deep breathing
Deep breathing exercises are a chemical free way of boosting mental alertness. Try them when the urge to have coffee or any other addictive substance strikes.
These easy ways will surely help you curb your caffeine intake.