Caffeine… pleasure v/s addiction

Caffeine today is one of the most commonly used beverages worldwide. Excessive and harmful use of caffeine over a period of time, in such a way, that it affects your health, social interaction, and other aspects of life.

Regular use of caffeine (3 or more cups a day) can cause negative effects on health, some of the health related issues that can arise are:

  1. Changes the speed and regularity of your heartbeat
  2. It raises blood pressure and increases the chances of a heart attack
  3. Makes you nervous, edgy, restless
  4. Gives you sleepless nights
  5. Linked to osteoporosis in men and women- a condition where bones become weak and can break easily.

A myth about caffeine is that it can become addictive, even though this is slightly true, caffeine is stimulant to the nervous system, regular intake of caffeine can cause mild physical dependence. But caffeine doesn't affect life physically, socially, or economically the way addictive drugs do. (But after looking at your monthly expenditure at the coffee shop, you may not agree!).

If you stop caffeine abruptly, you might have to suffer for a day or two, especially if your intake of coffee is two or more cups a day. Symptoms of withdrawal from caffeine are:

  • headache
  • fatigue
  • anxiety
  • irritability
  • depressed mood
  • difficulty concentrating

Even though caffeine can make you feel more energized and alert, too much of it is bad for your health. Quitting coffee to reset the body and leave the high of caffeine can be difficult but not impossible and if done in the right manner, it can prove to be highly beneficial in the long run.

Some ways to quit caffeine are:

  1. Cutting down on the amount of caffeine consumed gradually, don’t stop it all of a sudden.
  2. Reduce the cup size, or switch to half-caf, decaf or tea before stopping it altogether.
  3. Substitute cold caffeinated beverages with water, water flushes out the caffeine and keeps the body hydrated.
  4. Sleep extra to get rid of grogginess and fatigue
  5. Try to fit in an exercise session to naturally produce energy, instead of depending on caffeine

Caffeine addiction is so common that sometimes it doesn’t even come into notice. But when an individual is able to reduce or quit caffeine to lessen the negative effects on health, then it

becomes easier to get in touch with your natural energy and becomes easy to relax when night falls.