For the millions of people around the world who consume an estimated two billion cups of coffee each day, detoxing from coffee can seem unfathomable. Whether it is purchased from a local coffee shop, or whether it is brewed from the comfort of home, coffee is without a doubt one of the most popular beverages in the world.
Drinking a cup of coffee is often a task that many cannot start their day without doing. For them, it is integral to their morning routine as it provides a caffeine boost that they cannot live without. The stimulant effect of caffeine is like a drug. In fact, for some, the addiction to coffee is so strong, that going without it can lead to withdrawal symptoms such as headaches and irritability. This type of dependence on a chemical is unhealthy and can do long-term damage to your health.
If this story sounds familiar to you, and your need for coffee has turned from optional to required, it is not too late to break the addiction and reap the many benefits of eliminating coffee from your diet by starting a detox. A coffee detox is a simple, yet extremely beneficial process to complete. But before we get into the HOW of a coffee detox, let’s look at the WHY by exploring the five benefits of detoxing from coffee.
Five Benefits of a Coffee Detox
1. Better Quality Sleep
Because caffeine is a stimulant it can substantially limit the quality and amount of a person’s sleep. Even if cut-off times are implemented, the half-life of caffeine is 4-6 hours which means it stays in your system for a substantial amount of time after it is consumed. Because of this, not only can caffeine make it difficult to fall asleep, it can also reduce your total sleep time by one hour and it can even disrupt your Rapid Eye Movement (REM) sleep cycle.
Disruption of REM sleep inhibits the ability to enter into the deeper stages of sleep that are needed for the restoration and repair of our bodies. Entering REM sleep is critical to function optimally the next day. This is because it is in REM sleep that the areas of our brain responsible for learning, thinking and organizing information are stimulated.
2. Improves Your Mood and Stress Response
It is astonishing how much of an impact coffee has on your mood. It is often compared to other drugs that have a stimulating effect. Similar to these other stimulants, caffeine can cause anxiety, nervousness and jitters, all of which make it difficult to function throughout the day. This is also why many people experience withdrawal symptoms when they don’t have their morning cup of joe and then feel lethargic in the afternoon when the stimulant begins to wear off.
In addition to impacting mood, the caffeine in coffee also increases your stress response which causes the release of cortisol, the stress hormone. When cortisol increases, so do blood sugar levels, and subsequently insulin. Click To TweetThe rise in insulin increases inflammation which not only makes you feel more tired, but also acts as a precursor to many other health issues.
Quitting coffee through a coffee detox can make you feel less anxious, less nervous and less jittery. It is an easy way to reduce stress and improve your mood.
3. Helps Minimize Belly Fat
As previously mentioned, caffeine increases your stress response which results in the release of cortisol. What you may not know is that cortisol is a hormone which is essential to survival. It is produced in the adrenal glands and in addition to managing the body’s stress response, it also dictates how energy is used, controls blood pressure and promotes the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats.
Under normal circumstances, your body produces cortisol in amounts largely determined by the clock. Levels tend to be higher in morning—triggered by the emerging daylight–giving you a boost of energy to jumpstart your day. However, if you are under constant stress or if your adrenal glands are not functioning properly, your cortisol level may not drop off during the day. This undue stress results in an over-production of cortisol, which leads to cravings for sugary, fatty comfort foods. This extra food is stored around the abdomen as belly fat.
Of course, this is not to imply that you will lose weight simply by cutting out caffeine. However, cutting caffeine through a coffee detox will assist in regulating the hormone systems that can lead to belly fat.
4. Improved Vitamin and Mineral Absorption
It is often stated that we are what we eat. However, more accurately, we are not what we eat, we are what we are able to absorb. Research has shown that caffeine can lead to the depletion of important nutrients like Vitamin B6, which impacts cognitive health and energy, and interfere with the absorption of essential minerals, including calcium, iron, magnesium and B vitamins, just to name a few.
Although coffee may provide an initial jolt of energy through its stimulating effects of caffeine, it can also lead to the inability to absorb the essential vitamins and minerals your body needs to help produce energy on its own. It may be counterintuitive based what we have been conditioned to believe about coffee; however, detoxing from coffee will help you increase your energy by increasing your body’s ability to thrive and flourish because of sufficient vitamin and mineral absorption.
5. Improves the Alkalinity of the Body
Diseases thrive in acidic environments. Dr. Otto Warburg the 1931 Nobel Prize winner for cancer discovery, stated “NO disease, including cancer, can exist in an alkaline environment.” With an average pH of 4.85 to 5.10, most coffees are considered acidic.
When our pH levels are constantly below 7.4, our system becomes overly acidic and create conditions for diseases to thrive. In order to neutralize the impact of what is known as acidosis, our body is forced to extract essential vitamins and minerals such as calcium, potassium, magnesium and sodium from vital organs, bones and teeth in order to neutralize the effect of the acidosis. This in turns leads to nutrient deficiencies that can weaken our body’s systems and create the perfect breeding ground for chronic diseases such as cancer, arthritis, diabetes, obesity, osteoporosis, premature aging and autoimmune disease.
Removing coffee from your diet will decrease the acidity of your body, thereby making it more alkaline, minimize vitamin deficiencies and create an environment in your body that makes it harder for diseases to survive.
How to Gently Detox from Coffee
If you a coffee lover like I was, drinking coffee may seem as critical to functioning as drinking water. At the time, I thought it was the only way to get through my day. If this is you, then going “cold turkey,” and giving up coffee all at once may cause you more stress on your body. As already stated, increased stress can lead to increased and uncontrolled cortisol, so we want to avoid that.
In addition, if you’re a chronic coffee consumer, there’s a good chance you may experience some symptoms of withdrawal, such as the notorious caffeine headache, once you start to scale back. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to ease the process and minimize side effects. Instead of quitting cold turkey, try gradually decreasing your consumption by half each day until you wean off completely. For example, if you drink four cups of coffee a day, your detox will be as follows:
- Day 1: 4 cups of coffee
- Day 2: 2 cups of coffee
- Day 3: 1 cups of coffee
- Day 4: ½ cups of coffee
- Day 5: ¼ cup of coffee
- Final Day: No coffee!
The more gradually you detox from coffee, the easier it is on your body. However, it will take longer to feel the beneficial effects of the detox. however, these life-changing benefits will be well worth the effort.
Throughout your coffee detox, it’s important to stay hydrated, get plenty of sleep, stay active and enjoy a balanced and nutritious diet. This can help decrease withdrawal symptoms and improve your overall health in the process.
What to Drink Instead
Over the years I have tried to replace my coffee habit with other warm beverages like bone broth and warm lemon water. Although these are great nutritional beverages to include in any diet, I missed the comfort and flavor of my favorite cup of java, a distinct taste that could not be replaced with an herbal tea. However, a new coffee alternative company by the name of Sip Herbals has elevated the coffee substitute landscape with their variety of flavorful options.
Sip Herbals is an amazing grain and caffeine-free, premium coffee alternative, made with just three top-quality ingredients and without additives, flavorings, or GMOs. Sip Herbals is not only a vegan, paleo and keto coffee substitute, it is also autoimmune protocol friendly and made of all-natural ingredients.
Not only will you enjoy the flavor of Sip Herbals, this coffee substitute of chock full of health benefits that makes it that much more enjoyable to drink:
- Sip Herbals contains no artificial flavors, just quality whole food ingredients.
- Sip Herbals is mineral rich with calcium, copper, magnesium, selenium, zinc, and more. This means that with each cup you are adding nutrients to your body instead of depleting them.
- Sip Herbals’ base ingredients are simple and organic – Chicory, Carob, and Dandelion. With each cup of Sip Herbals you drink you are getting natural prebiotics which are special plant fibers that help healthy bacteria grow in your gut.
Sip Herbals currently has four amazing flavors that mirror the ones that you would find at your favorite local coffee shop: Vanilla, Dirty Chai, Mocha and Salted Caramel. If flavors are not your thing, you can try out their Original offering to replace your classic cup of coffee.
Each flavor comes in two sizes, 4 oz (15 servings) and 8 oz (30 servings). However, if you are undecided on which one to purchase or you just think that variety is the spice of life, they also have a sample pack that includes 4 flavors: Original, Salted Caramel, Dirty Chai and Mocha.
One of my favorite things about Sip Herbals is that it is simple to make:
- First, you Measure – Place 1 tsp of Sip Herbals Coffee Substitute in a Coffee press or single use drip bags. For a Darker brew increase to 2 tsp.
- Next, you Prep – Add 3/4 cup (6oz) of hot water.
- Lastly, you Steep – For a light brew, let steep for up to 60 seconds. For a dark brew, let steep for up to 2 minutes.
This ease of preparation makes it easy and convenient to make on the go when you travel and at work.
If you were like me, I know that after realizing all of the wonderful benefits of Sip Herbals, you will want to try it. I am excited for you to do so and let me know what you think. To learn more about Sip Herbals and purchase your own pack, go to www.sipherbals.com. Use discount code JAMIENICOLE, to get 10% off your order.
If you are looking for more tips and support, join me over on my group page, The Village – A Natural HEALing Community, to get tons of information and tips to help you take your HEALTHY EATING and ACTIVE LIVING to the next level.