Believe it or not, but I actually only started drinking coffee when I was 23 – right after I had Annabelle.
Before then I was a hot choc girl my whole life.
As you could imagine, as a new mum with a baby who didn’t sleep, coffee became life. I only really drank around 1 per day in the morning. But I felt like I needed it to function.
It’s been around 7 years I’ve drunk coffee for now, and I’ ultimately just became habit to have my morning coffee. I enjoyed the social aspect of it also, meeting the school mums after drop or weekend brunch.
But what I didn’t realise over the years was how much it had an effect on my mental health. It would set off the physical symptoms of anxiety and inhibited me from sleeping.
Once I started paying attention I realised just how much it affected me and decided to cut coffee I noticed a big change.
Even after just a few days of removing caffeine from my diet I noticed…
While I thought coffee was waking me up and helping me focus, it was actually doing the opporite.
I noticed once I stopped drinking caffeine that I could actually focus my thoughts and apply myself a lot better.
The caffeine was actually sending my thoughts into overdrive. Which I struggled to then focus in on one task at a time.
Feel Asleep Easier
This was one of the biggest things I noticed. I have always taken ages to fall asleep. We are talking an hour of just lying there staring at the ceiling.
Now I am finding I can fall asleep a lot easier and quicker. I started going to bed earlier and waking earlier as well. Which I find works a lot better for me.
While it wasn’t the secret to removing my anxiety altogether. It certainly helped reduce the impact it had on my mind and body.
I had a reduction in the physical effects of it. As well as it seemed to remove that trigger for really setting it off for no reason.
It’s helped me identify my anxiety better as I don’t have that ‘fuel’ of caffeine exacerbating it.
I would often get headaches right behind my eyes at the front of my head, which is apparently from dehydration.
I drink water but sometimes it wasn’t enough and I would get these headaches regularly.
Since quitting caffeine I find I am hardly getting them and finding that with the replacement of herbal teas I’m much less dehydrated.
Less Physical Symptoms
Just like with my anxiety symptoms, I really did see those physical symptoms go away altogether.
I don’t get heart palpitations and sweaty palms. As where I used to quite often after I drank coffee.
I also find I can better focus my vision – which is a crazy thing! I didn’t realise it could have this impact!
It’s been since the start of March now since I quit coffee. And admittedly I have had a couple on weekends in recent weeks.
It was a good experiment to see since being caffeine-free so long to see how it would affect me.
It was a dramatic effect and I had headaches and heart palpitations both time. As well as not being able to sleep.
I even felt sick from having coffee on an empty stomach.
As much as I do enjoy the taste of coffee, I don’t think I’ll be going back to drinking it full time any time soon.
The changes I have seen have given me enough reason to reduce if not remove it altogether from my diet to help reduce my anxiety.
I have been replacing it with chai lattes and herbal teas, which means the social aspect of it is still there.