Detoxing requires that you don’t consume certain types of foods and drinks to help your body restore its natural detoxification abilities. But can you still drink coffee during a detox? Learn all about caffeine and detoxing, and how you can avoid nasty caffeine withdrawal symptoms.
Caffeine is often considered to be one of the most widespread psychoactive substances in modern culture. Many of us feel as though we can’t go without our daily cup or three in the morning. When we abstain from caffeine for whatever reason, uncomfortable withdrawal symptoms ranging from irritability to bad headaches are likely to occur.
Most detoxes and cleanses call for participants to not drink coffee. It’s only logical that most coffee-drinkers would question this advice, wondering: “If it’s just a little bit, it can’t be that bad, right?” One may think. But is it? Let’s look at whether you can still enjoy coffee during a detox.
The question of whether caffeine is really unhealthy isn’t an easy one to answer. The pros and the cons of consuming coffee and other caffeinated drinks has always been a hotly debated topic where opinions differ wildly.
It’s no secret that caffeine can be addictive, and that consuming it in large amounts can bring on negative outcomes such as calcium loss, rapid heart rate, or increased anxiety.
On the other hand, moderate consumption of coffee can help with migraines, may increase exercise performance.
Most detoxes and cleanses are about giving your body a break from processing the often unhealthy components that people ingest habitually. The goal when detoxing is to clean out your body and help it restore its natural detoxification abilities.
When drinking coffee, our liver and the kidneys have to perform extra hard to remove caffeine from our bodies, which will lessen the overall effectiveness of a detox.
Caffeine also decreases nutrient absorption (which is especially important during a detox!), making the body more acidic. In addition, it can dull your taste buds, so that the foods you consume during a detox become less satisfying. Last but not least, sugar and creamer during a detox are obviously big no-no’s!
Because of how caffeine negatively affects your detoxing efforts, it’s evident that abstaining from coffee really will make a significant impact. But what do you do if you’re used to drinking coffee regularly and don’t want those nasty caffeine withdrawal symptoms when you’re detoxing? The solution: wean yourself off caffeine before you start!
Those who drink coffee regularly know that caffeine withdrawal is a real thing. Not getting your cup may cause bouts of crankiness and irritability in the best cases, and in worse cases, may trigger awful withdrawal headaches. But you can avoid these withdrawal symptoms by slowly weaning yourself off your daily dose of caffeine in the days preceding your detox.
You should slowly wean yourself off caffeine at least one week before you start with your cleanse/detox. You can do that by gradually reducing your daily caffeine intake.
Start out by cutting your regular coffee intake in half by mixing ½ regular coffee with ½ decaf in the first few days of weaning yourself off. Try to drink no more than 3 cups of coffee per day.
After 2 or 3 days, try to further limit your coffee intake, and if possible, drink only 1 cup per day. Keep your cup ½ regular and ½ decaf. If you crave more cups of hot brew during your day, you can substitute these with green tea.
On days 5 and 6, don’t drink coffee at all, but drink 1–3 cups of green tea instead, with one or two cups being decaf.
On the last day, right before you start with your actual detox, you should only drink decaf green tea.
If you don’t like green tea, you can substitute it for yerba mate or decaf chai tea. These teas are rich in healthy antioxidants that will be beneficial for your detox.
Most of us don’t necessarily drink coffee because of the taste, but because it gives us a needed kick in the morning or during an afternoon slump.
Rather than relying on a cup of hot java to get you into gear, try to get plenty of rest the night before. If you head to bed earlier and get enough sleep, you will begin to have more energy during the day. Furthermore, make sure you drink plenty of water and juice. Often times, the headaches experienced during a detox can be because of dehydration, so drinking enough healthy liquids may help to reduce their severity.