To Boldly Go...

Captain's Log: Stardate 201301.30
This is some seriously uncharted territory.

Ten days direct maintain elapsed since I entered the realm I never persuasion I would enter. Sanity together with optimism are growing thin. But my volition remains strong. I am boldly going where no New York-born Jew has gone before. I am entering the sector of the universe where…there is no coffee. (What, you lot persuasion I was going to nation bagels? Nah, gave those upward 7 years ago.)

Yes, my friends, I am giving upward coffee. Not forever. Just for a month.

Why? Well, I realized that if I’m going to inquire nutrition clients to surrender or at to the lowest degree cutting means dorsum on things they love, it’s only fair for me to do the same. Now, granted, I already do boot the bucket without a lot of foods I in 1 lawsuit practically lived on, but it’s been years since I flat-out quit something mutual frigidness turkey. Especially something I love equally much equally coffee. I decided I had to remind myself how hard it is. Bagels? Meh. Pasta? Rice? Truthfully, they don’t fifty-fifty await similar nutrient to me anymore. I’ve fifty-fifty been known to boot the bucket a piece without chocolate. But coffee? The NRA has nada on me, baby. You volition direct maintain to pry it from my cold, dead hands. (And fifty-fifty together with thence you’d improve pose a carafe inwards my coffin simply inwards case! *Note: I teach this from my mother. I suspect it was located on the same chromosome equally the bluish eyes.)

Ask anyone who knows me well: the persuasion of me giving upward java is equally plausible equally stuffing a king of beasts into a duffel pocketbook together with sneaking it onto an plane inwards your carry-on bag. (But that would live much easier, actually, because a king of beasts beingness stuffed into a duffel pocketbook would probable live much to a greater extent than tame than I am without my coffee.) In fact, the longest I’ve e'er gone without it since college (when I joined the legions of card-carrying Americans who wouldn't dream of starting a forenoon without a yummy cup), was during Air Force basic training, when I spent half dozen together with one-half weeks beingness woken upward non yesteryear caffeine, but yesteryear a blasting reveille together with a preparation teacher yelling that I was a worthless turd together with had improve teach the hell upward together with striking the soil running.

I’m non without caffeine, remove heed you, simply without coffee. It’s non the caffeine I’m trying to alive without. It’s the ritual. The physical together with psychological reliance I’d developed on it. (I hesitate to nation “addiction,” because I don’t intend my java intake qualified. *Looks away shamefully.* Okay, fine. Addiction. There. I said it.) I realized that I was drinking java yesteryear default. On auto-pilot. Even if I didn’t expressly want or need it. It was simply the affair to do. To live honest, I didn’t fifty-fifty similar it anymore. It was simply there. The gustatory modality wasn’t doing anything for me.

Mostly, java was comfort. It was my routine. I would wake upward inwards the morning, watch the lilliputian girls’ room, together with and thence caput downward to the kitchen to fish a filter out of the pack, mensurate out the coffee, together with laid the pot to brewing. (If I was inwards a serious hurry, I would occupation my housemates’ Keurig, but I’ve flora the materials I made myself was unremarkably much better. [Finally, afterwards years of beingness clueless well-nigh making decent coffee. Step one: purchase practiced character java beans.]) I would teach dressed, together with fifty-fifty earlier I was done, I could caput dorsum downstairs to pour myself one-half a loving cup to build beingness upward together with well-nigh piece it was nonetheless dark exterior that much to a greater extent than bearable.

Above all, java was my liquid hug. My 24-hour interval project for similar a shot (completely unrelated to nutrition) is 1 I’m glad to direct maintain for the sake of fiscal security, but 1 inwards which I uncovering precisely null satisfaction, fulfillment, or engagement. I’m single, together with I alive 200 miles away from my family. There isn’t a lot of “warm fuzzy” inwards my life at the moment, together with I’m non inwards a higher house admitting that java was a warm twain of arms to a greater extent than or less me together with a soft whisper inwards my ear, delivering my daily dose of “it’s going to live okay.”

And piece I was nonetheless getting that form of comfort from coffee, the taste had teach disappointing. Even flavored coffees, similar vanilla nut, cinnamon hazelnut, chocolate raspberry, together with fifty-fifty doctored upward the means I similar it amongst cream together with stevia (hey, I’m a nutritionist, non a saint), it wasn’t hitting the spot anymore.

Amy's giving upward coffee?
But I simply bought stock inwards Allegro!
I honestly don’t fifty-fifty intend it was the caffeine I was addicted to. It was mostly the physical deed of drinking it—and, during the workday, of stepping away from my desk for a piece together with reminding myself there’s to a greater extent than to life than cubicles together with estimator screens. Of course, a lilliputian stimulant shot inwards the arm (or downward the hatch, equally it were) never wound when I was struggling to continue my eyes opened upward on a irksome 24-hour interval or when I’d had problem falling asleep the nighttime before. I confess, I was 1 of the millions of worker bees who could honestly non imagine making it through a 24-hour interval without coffee. But I don’t intend I was quite equally addicted to the wake-up consequence equally some.

See, I oftentimes drank half-caff, or fifty-fifty direct decaf. Only when I was specially sleepy (or grouchy, which, non coincidentally, went hand-in-hand amongst specially sleepy), would I teach the full-throttle stuff. I won’t tell you lot where I work, but let’s simply nation it’s within the DC Beltway together with the edifice has 5 sides, which, if you lot desire to teach technical, makes it a pentagon, but you lot didn’t hear that from me. Anyway, there’s a Starbucks inside! (Your taxation dollars at work! No, actually, if the trace of piece of work in that location at 8 a.m. is anything to boot the bucket by, it’s most definitely our ain paychecks at work. And together with thence again, since most people who piece of work in that location are authorities employees, authorities contractors, or military machine personnel, I gauge it is our taxation dollars at work. Touche.) Most of the fourth dimension I would teach my daily dose at the run-of-the-mill java shop, but if I needed “the existent thing,” Starbucks was the place.

And I rarely got a large…I unremarkably got a small-scale or medium, together with oftentimes took it dorsum to my desk where I would direct maintain long plenty to imbibe it that yesteryear the fourth dimension I was done, it was long since cold. (Note: I do non recommend this method. Iced java is good, hot java is great. Room temperature java is gross, together with java reheated inwards the microwave is downright unpalatable.) I gauge what I’m proverb is, if I was addicted to the caffeine, I for certain wasn’t equally far gone equally people I run into downing multiple regular ventis throughout the day.

So yeah…it’s similar a shot 10 days sans cafĂ©. How am I doing thence far? I desire to kill every concluding 1 of the em-effs who comes upward to me at piece of work together with asks me to do something for them. And God aid you lot if you lot build my telephone band earlier 9:30a.m. I’m surprisingly all right. I suspect this has to do amongst the fact that my java intake has been replaced yesteryear in all probability triple the amount of tea. (Hey, I said I was giving upward coffee, non my higher cognitive functions.) Some of it’s caffeinated, but I’m drinking a lot of herbal tea, too. Mostly materials amongst herbs together with spices that are practiced for liver function, digestion, detox, together with all that jazz (cinnamon, dandelion, ginger, burdock, licorice, clove, mint, etc). And I figure fifty-fifty when I imbibe dark tea, it has far less caffeine than coffee, thence my total intake is in all probability much lower than ii weeks ago.

I’m drinking plainly ol’ English linguistic communication tea, Earl Grey (my favorite, if I had to select a favorite inwards a category which I by together with large similar none of), green tea amongst mint, herbal mint teas, together with other dark or herbal teas that gustatory modality similar gingerbread, pumpkin pie, cocoa, together with fifty-fifty a slightly off-the-wall 1 that has cayenne pepper inwards it. Except for that concluding one, I by together with large nonetheless add together a tiny flake of cream together with sweetener. Otherwise, frankly, tea to me is simply muddy water. Ick. (And I remain away from the fruity herbal teas…peach, dark cherry, pomegranate…fruity dirty water. Doube ick. These are what my sis calls “froo-froo teas”. Note: She drinks them. She is also 5’10”, piece I am 5’2”. I’m non exclusively sure we’re related. Forget Obama’s nascence certificate; I desire to run into hers.) The only tea I tin imbibe direct upward amongst nada added is yerba mate. The existent deal, authentic yerba mate, imported from Paraguay. (Huge thank you lot to a old housemate from Paraguay who introduced me to this specific build together with flavor. It is HEAVEN together with I’ve loved it for years, fifty-fifty earlier I was ditching java for a month.)

For someone who claims to non similar tea, I have
a heckuva lot of it.
I know what you’re thinking: why thence much tea, Amy? You hate tea. Well, yes, compared to coffee, I do. So why am I non turning to the java substitutes widely available nowadays? Things similar Teecino (which is AMAZING, yesteryear the way) or Dandy Blend (which is also real good, but I much prefer Teecino)? I decided that going that road would live obeying the letter of the law, but non the spirit. Sure, those things are naturally caffeine-free, non-acidic, non bitter, together with all that other practiced stuff, but they would live unopen plenty to that loving cup of liquid hug that I’d experience similar I was breaking my ain rule, fifty-fifty if I technically wasn’t. (Note: if you lot are trying to teach off coffee, or fifty-fifty simply cutting dorsum a lilliputian but aren’t create to restrict shipping exclusively to tea, I highly recommend Teecino. They direct maintain a ton of dissimilar flavors, together with the 3 I’ve tried inwards the yesteryear were all delicious. You tin do one-half coffee, one-half Teecino for a while, together with thence ¾ Teecino. That’s how a lot of folks do it…by easing into it. Easier done at dwelling theatre than at work, but it’s nonetheless a feasible strategy.)

This is hard. Giving upward coffee?
Not thence much.
So yeah, I’m all correct thence far. Yes, that’s in all probability due to the caffeine inwards the dark tea (and the teeny tiny amount inwards the green), but I stand upward yesteryear my claim that my total intake is less than what it was. And honestly, for someone who never, e'er persuasion she’d live able to teach inwards ii days amongst zero coffee—even decaf—this is huge. It would live overnice if I wasn’t using tea equally a crutch, but hey, I’m only human. And my clients are, too. There are reasonable substitutions nosotros tin build for almost whatever nutrient or beverage, together with making my means through 1 correct now, I’m genuinely surprised at how non difficult it is. Would I rather live drinking java tomorrow morning? Yes. But it’s of import that I attempt out to myself that I tin do this. There are guys getting caught inwards firefights inwards Afghanistan; I’m pretty sure I tin build do without my precious java for a few days.

Now, volition I boot the bucket dorsum to drinking java when this lilliputian 30-day experiment is up? YOU BET YOUR SWEET ARSE I WILL. Maybe. Depends on how I’m feeling yesteryear then. Regarding the wellness benefits (or detriments) of coffee, I’m inwards the army camp that believes the good things query says together with closes its eyes together with covers its ears when negative things come upward up. But I tend to pose java inwards the same category equally carmine wine: a lilliputian is in all probability good, but that doesn’t hateful to a greater extent than is better. (In fact, when it comes to liver function, nosotros know for sure that to a greater extent than vino is definitely not better.)

So I do conception to supply to my dearest brew, but I’m thinking well-nigh making it a to a greater extent than occasional thing. I’d similar to continue it special—very practiced quality, savored slow piece nonetheless inwards my pajamas, amongst a new inwards my mitt on a lazy Sabbatum morning. Or a loving cup to accompany practiced friends together with practiced conversation at a Lord's Day brunch. But every day, without fifty-fifty thinking well-nigh it? When it doesn’t fifty-fifty gustatory modality that good? That, I intend I tin continue passing on.

It’ll live interesting to run into how I react when I direct maintain that first, long-anticipated, tantalizing cup. Will I bounce off the walls? It’ll in all probability depend on what form of java I choose. But this I know for sure, fifty-fifty simply 10 days in: I volition not live wishing it was tea.

Do NOT tease me, Microsoft clip art!

P.S. If non for all the tea I’m drinking now, this would in all probability live a practiced fourth dimension to occupation the Crest WhiteStrips I’ve had inwards the medicine cabinet forever but haven’t tried yet.

P.P.S. Next affair I’ll endeavor to boot the bucket without: Peanut butter. (Yes, fifty-fifty the natural kind, where the component subdivision listing is: peanuts.) Even without hydrogenated soybean together with canola oils, added sugar, molasses, together with salt, I nonetheless uncovering the materials ridiculously addictive. And piece I firmly do NOT believe most people demand to count calories, at almost 100 calories per tablespoon, in that location comes a betoken where a PB addiction amounts to thousands of extra cals earlier I fifty-fifty know what’s striking me. And oddly enough, I’ve been eating a lot to a greater extent than PB than commons since I’ve been off coffee. Substituting 1 harmful addiction for another…not a practiced strategy. But I ain’t skeer’d. If I tin surrender java for a month, peanut butter’s got nowhere to hide)

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