A Life without Caffeine
To be totally transparent, I did have coffee a few times. I am drinking some right now actually (1 cup only, then done). I found pumpkin spice k-cup latte things on sale at Kroger and I couldn't resist. Weak? Yes. Delicious? Also yes. I did go a few days caffeine free, and after today I'm jumping back down to 0. Yay headaches!
What have I noticed during this 1st week? Well, I have noticed that caffeine is 300% a trigger for me. I kind of hoped that somehow it wasn't? But it was. IBS is a tricky thing, but sometimes it's pretty clear cut. Which means that I truly do need to cut down on my coffee intake. Tea has less caffeine, but I want to move in the direction of caffeine-free herbal teas in the meantime. I no longer feel my colon instantly kick alive (in a bad way) in the morning, and the D in IBS-D has gotten less severe (TMI? probably. We dietitians are called the poop experts for a reason).
I'm still alive thanks to teeccino, an herbal chicory root coffee alternative. It tastes very similar to coffee, is brewed similarly, and gives me comfort in the mornings. I have yet to placebo-trick myself into actually feeling more energized after, but hey, great things take time. I have some at work, at home, and just ordered some more. I add my usual fix-ins that I add to coffee and bam, I have a latte that both I and my gut love. Score.
What else have I noticed? I'm FREAKING EXHAUSTED every morning. My body feels like lead and I pretty much can't workout in the morning. Sure, my stimulant-free pre-workout does give me a little kick, but it's nothing like C4. It sucks. For the next month I'll probably have to stick to something simple like walking/stairs in the morning, and do my actual workouts after getting home because I won't get anything done when it feels like my body is moving through molasses. I'm excited for the magical moment when my body starts having more of it's own energy; I was pretty dependent on caffeine (and have been for awhile, thanks grad school!), so it's going to take probably about a month for me to detox and start moving in the right direction.
I do drink more water, though, since I'm not sipping on coffee. Good thing my boyfriend doesn't read my blog, because this was totally a point he's made for the last year and I've constantly refuted him. Bleh, don't you hate when boys are right about something?
Stay tuned for my next post about the other substitutes I'm using to curb my craving for coffee. You also might think I've given up Starbucks -- HA! You are sorely mistaken. They have plenty of options for us caffeine free folks. Decaf might still have a smidge of caffeine, but it's still way better than full strength brew. I WILL NEVER SURRENDER MY PSL.
My next trigger to tackle? Grains, gluten, and all things starchy carbs. AKA everything good and happy in the world. I'm trying to decrease my alcohol consumption as well, but I don't drink that often to begin with so it's less of an issue.
I also got my vitamins as recommended by my NP--and a probiotic. I had some vitamin deficiencies (who the actual F*CK moves to Arizona from Michigan and becomes vitamin D deficient?) so I'm addressing those, adding a multivitamin, a fish oil pill, and probiotics. Cheers to decreasing inflammation and increasing my health!