Sunday, August 22, 2010

Why I try to avoid Caffeine

As a young person, one of the first reasons I didn't drink Coke was because Root Beer was sweeter and I loved more sugar in my drink. Later I was led to believe that it was morally wrong to drink any caffeinated drink and thus to be brutally honest, as a Root Beer drinker I felt morally superior to anyone that drank that "vile caffeine liquid."

Now I realize that what we drink isn't a moral issue but just a matter of health and that the sugar in my Root Beer is possibly just as unhealthy as the caffeine in other soft drinks, and so I gave up drinking soda pop. Because I have never liked the taste of artificial sweeteners, diet drinks weren't an option and so I decided that I would rather just drink water instead or 100% fruit juice. Since then however, I have realized that even though it is a natural sugar, even drinking too much fruit juice will spike my blood sugar and so it really isn't a healthy choice. Now if I do want a little flavor in my water I will add just a small percentage of fruit juice with mostly water.

As additional information about what I quoted about caffeine causing irritability is that actually anyone who drinks caffeine daily will feel irritable when they stop. A doctor explained to me that caffeine mimics a chemical that our brain naturally produces that creates energy and euphoria. When someone drinks caffeine daily then the brain eventually thinks that it no longer has to make that chemical and thus it becomes necessary to continue to take in caffeine in order to feel good. This doctor told me that it takes 21 days of going off of caffeine cold turkey before the brain will start to realize it needs to make that chemical again. So for those 21 days, the person will feel somewhat miserable and yes, even irritable, which is ironic because using caffeine is said to create that same feeling.

That is the interesting thing about some of my unhealthy habits that I have like my addiction to sugar. Temporarily, going off sugar is somewhat painful, but in the long run I can feel so much better than how I felt getting that temporary "high" off of sugar. For me it takes a lot of will power to trust that I will eventually feel even better. If sugar is this hard for me, it is a dang good thing that I haven't tried heroine.

No comments: