Caffeine consumption concerns

Jay Schlaegel, Assignment Editor

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I had a late night Friday and an early morning Saturday. I woke up groggy and incoherent. Caffeine was calling my name. I consumed coffee. The day progressed, my exhaustion returned. Caffeine was again calling my name. I downed a Dr. Pepper. I washed my car. My exhaustion returned. Caffeine was calling my name yet again. I downed a Monster. My body was completely out of whack. Sluggishness overcame me. Never again, I told myself.

I woke up Sunday morning determined to cut caffeine out of my diet. The days of coffee-fueled coherence were over. My deprivation of sleep and dependence upon caffeine had become far too unhealthy. After arriving at church soon after waking up, my head began to throb and I could barely keep my eyes open. Had my dependence on caffeine reached the point of no return? Could I function without coffee? Am I dependent on a substance for functionality?

Coffee has always been my main source of caffeine. At times, I get in the habit of drinking a cup of joe every morning to start each day. Though coffee is known to have several benefits, including a defense against Parkinson’s disease, type 2 diabetes, and liver disease, it also has several major negative side effects. Heavy daily caffeine use may cause insomnia, nervousness, restlessness, irritability, upset stomach, fast heartbeat, and muscle tremors.

I myself have experienced a number of these negative side effects. However, not only do I experience an energy boost from drinking coffee, I love it’s flavor and how it perfectly compliments a breakfast meal.

My quest to end my caffeine consumption ended rather quickly. Coffee is too good. I will continue to refrain from drinking soda and energy drinks, and I will cut back on sugar. However, after conducting research and drinking a small amount of coffee, I have come to the conclusion that its presence in my diet does more good than harm.

One’s dietary decisions in regards to coffee and caffeine should vary according to his or her personal health and preference. I tried cutting both out completely. I do not recommend doing the same. Just as in all things, all good things are made great in moderation.