This week from the “Gram…caffeine balance!
“Why should I stop drinking coffee? I only add stevia and almond milk”…
Idk who needs to hear this but: I’m actually NOT against coffee, OR caffeine. This is what I tell my LRD students:
Caffeine is well known for its ability to elevate mood> blocks adenosine> not only increases alertness but also has been found to improve mood. One study found that consuming 0.68 mg per pound (1.5 mg per kg) of body weight led to a more positive mood, compared to a placebo, BUT, the problem is, we consume WAYYY more than that.
Regular consumption of caffeinated coffee:
-Increases levels of adrenaline as part of the body’s normal reaction to stress.
-Boosts neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine.
-Raises heart rate and blood pressure and stimulates the brain, causing increased alertness and improved focus.
HOWEVER: OVER consumption (2-3+ cups a day) can lead to anxiety, jitters, gut inflammation, dehydration, and extremely dry skin.
Tips to balance caffeine healthfully:
-Have it around your workout
-On less active days, opt for little to no caffeine
-Do not consume caffeine if you are already stressed or as a means to treat “anxiety-fatigue”
-Do not consume caffeine after 11 am (or at least 8 hours before bed).
-Allow yourself “full caf” on the weekend as a treat.
-Take intentional breaks
-Alternate between coffee alternatives so you don’t get dependent on caffeine
Tips to avoid withdrawal symptoms:
People who are physically or psychologically dependent on caffeine may experience irritability or anger when trying to abstain from this stimulant. You also may experience headache, fatigue, low energy, irritability, anxiety, poor concentration, depressed mood and tremors for up to 9-10 days.
Slowly cut back on caffeine
Getting enough sleep
Move first thing the morning to get those endorphins released
Don’t give up- if you sense you have an issue with caffeine it is SO worth it to take a break. Check out some of my favorite coffee alternatives: