How can I cut my caffeine intake?

Most people report a very good success ratio by cutting down caffeine intake at the rate of 1/2 cup of coffee a day. This is known as Caffeine Fading. Alternatively you might try reducing coffee intake in discrete steps of two-five cups of coffee less per week (depending on how high is your initial intake). If you are drinking more than 10 cups of coffee a day, you should seriously consider cutting down. While your tolerance to your caffeine levels will go up, the rate at which your body metabolizes caffeine doesn’t change significantly, and you can end up with high levels of caffeine around bed time. You should avoid trying to find out how to get caffeine out of your system by avoiding large quantities in the first place – here we’ll show you how.

Tapering your Coffee Consumption

The best way to proceed is to consume caffeine regularly for a week, while keeping a precise log of the times and amounts of caffeine intake (remember that chocolate, tea, soda beverages and many headache pills contain caffeine as well as coffee). At the end of the week proceed to reduce your coffee intake at the rate recommended above.

Remember to have substitutes available for drinking: if you are not going to have a hot cup of coffee at your 10 minute break, you might consider having hot chocolate or herbal tea, but NOT decaf, since decaf has also been shown to be addictive. This should take you through the works without much problem.

Quitting Cold Turkey

Some other people quit cold turkey. Withdrawal symptoms are quite nasty this way (see section below) but they can usually be countered with lots of sleep and exercise. Many people report being able to stop drinking caffeine almost cold-turkey while on holidays on the beach. If quitting cold turkey is proving too hard even in the beach, drinking a coke might help.

Light Roast vs. Dark Roast

There’s a myth floating around that light roasts contain more caffeine than darker roasts, and that perhaps you can reduce your caffeine intake by drinking a dark roast. There’s only minimal truth to this – roughly 5% caffeine is lost going from a light roast to a dark roast, not enough to be a serious solution. There’s also no relation between coffee’s taste and caffeine levels. A much better solution is to create your own 50/50 blend of regular coffee and decaf – letting you enjoy all the flavor of coffee with only half the caffeine.

Here’s another source analyzing caffeine (plus chlorogenic acid) content by roasting (and brewing) method:

28 thoughts on “How can I cut my caffeine intake?”

  1. Trying out different types of caffeine cessation

    I had caffeine withdrawal symptoms once before, but never considered actively quitting caffeine. As I’ve been teasing my wife that she drinks too much caffeinated soda, I’ve decided to quit caffeine. I have had consistent irritable bowel, and I hope getting rid of caffeine will help.

    I typically drank 3-4 cups/day. I went cold turkey over a long weekend, and was fine for a day. I then had splitting headaches starting in the afternoon that lasted into the evening until I went to bed. Aspirin helped. I’ve replaced drinking a caffeinated beverage with hot water, to satisfy the habitual drinking characteristic. On the fourth day I got a headache again. I’ve decided to drink 1/2 cup of tea in the afternoon, when the headaches come on, to see if that will help.

    This is going to take longer than I thought.

    1. caffeine reduction

      Can take it or leave it. For years didn’t drink coffee, rather too much soda pop. 6 years ago I quit cold turkey, switched to ice water by the bucket. Maybe a gallon a day. Makes you wee wee lots. Last year or so, been doing both water and coffee. I use two heaping teaspoons of grounds to make a 12 cup pot. But my CUP is filled 3 times per pot. Don’t know how much caffeine I getting, but some days I just don’t bother to drink any at all. On the road my coffee would get cold, learned to drink cold coffee. Now that too makes little difference to me. If the maker has it hot, I drink it hot. I it’s leftover from last night, I drink it cold. How do I figure out caffeine per cup using 2 heaping teaspoons of grounds per pot?

  2. Try fading using NODOZ!!!

    I feel your pain – LITERALLY! The light of my computer screen is hurting my eyes/POUNDING headache! This is the second time I have endured this pain and nonsense. It is not worth it!! I MUST rid myself of caffeine because my bloodpressure is SKY high. I have been doing my own “fading”, by cutting out the drinking of coffee completely [and I drank a LOT], and when the headaches become savage – around 4AM daily, I take a gradually reduced amount of NODOZ.

    I learned about NODOZ during hunting season, because I couldnt get my usual coffee-fix b4 heading out at 4AM, so I took a NODOZ to avoid the killer headaches. After 4days I am down to 1/2 a pill and tomorrow I will go for 1/3 or 1/4. Relief usually takes about 30mins and needs to be accompanied by food to avoid stomach upset.

    Caffeine is an addicting drug – and for people in poor health AND extremists like me, who drink 40-60 ozs all morning, you are better off avoiding it completely

    1. I’m not sure NoDoz is the answer

      On the positive side for NoDoz you do get a measured dosage.

      On the negative side NoDoz is a fairly strong does of caffeine at 200 mg per pill. That’s the equivalent of a very strong cup of coffee. That is the smaller problem the larger issue is that where coffee, tea and other beverages are a relatively slow release due to their volume NoDoz will hit you all at once. The food recommended in the previous comment will help this.

      Personally I still recommend going with cutting back slowly on whatever you have been drinking/eating to this point.

  3. I’ve quit a total of 3 times

    I’ve quit a total of 3 times and am now going to try a 4th. The first time I was able to get no withdrawal symptoms by simply slowly reducing the amount of soda I drank over a period of 2 weeks. It went down from a full glass to a smaller and smaller amount until I got to about 1/4 of a glass. I took it the same time each day with food. After staying at the 1/4 for another 3 days, I stopped my intake and had no adverse affects. The 2nd time, I still ended up with headaches while trying to quit for a month. The 3rd time I quit cold turkey and it pretty much killed one day. If you want to quit cold turkey, I would advise you to stop drinking caffeine on Thursday with the plan of doing nothing all day Saturday. You will probably go to bed on Friday night with a small headache and wake up with a big one the next day.

    1. I’ve quit????Doesn’t sound like it

      Just wondering, you said you have quit 3 times and now you are on your 4th time, it doesn’t sound like you have really quit. I think a person has got to really want to quit. I am a Coke drinker. I only have maybe one or two a day, not very significant. So far today, I haven’t had any. I don’t think of myself as a heavy drinker of soda pop. I don’t belive in drinking Coffee yet my mother in law says “Why don’t you just drink a cup of coffee, it is the same thing.” No, not completely. Coke does have less caffine. But the fact is, it has caffine. I want to quit…but how many times? I have to have coke with popcorn. I must have a coke with pizza. Coke and Mexican food go real well together…is there really a quiting point?

  4. Quitting the Caffeine

    I quit drinking caffeine once and I did it cold turkey. It took 2 weeks for the headaches and fatigue to go away. I was tired of the incoveniance of always trying to get my morning coffee and when I quit It made my life so much easier. Their was an extra 30-60 minutes a day I didn’t have to worry about getting a fix. I only made it 6 months and I slowly started drinking caffeine again, before I knew it, I was drinking coffee everyday again.

    I have since tried to cut back by drinking green tea, but I ended up drinking green tea all day long and not drinking an ounce of water. I always felt dehydrated and the need for more green tea was once again becoming an inconveniance.

    1. well done

      im happy that you mannaged to quit…
      have you got a hobbie to take your mind of coffee? like rock climbing, swimming, helping others?
      green tea is verry good for you and you should try to drink more water!

      xx good luck! xx

  5. A number of potential drug

    A number of potential drug interactions can occur when
    aspirin is used in combination with other medications. Acetaminophen (Tylenol) is usually recommended instead of aspirin in these situations.

  6. I started drinking espresso

    I started drinking espresso about five years ago. I drink a double espresso (size of a coffee) first thing in the morning. Every single day in the late afternoon I get horrible migraines and stomach aches. I have a generalized anxiety disorder so I do have anxiety most of the time but since the coffee intake very severe. I was wondering if this one espresso in the morning could be causing these symptoms every afternoon?

    1. Some people are more

      Some people are more sensitive to caffeine than others. My intake has never been anything like as high as some people’s, and has actually been relatively low for a few years now, but I still have problems. So, yes, it could well be your problems are caffeine-related.

    2. don’t ever start drinking espresso or stop now

      I believe that espresso is highly addictive and I believe caffeine is the culprit of my chronic pain. I was diagnosed with bone inflammation and it is very painful. I’m only 36. After doing research on the web I found out that it is caused from an acidic diet and stress. Caffeine causes both! I have a pretty good diet but was up to 6 shots of espresso per day! Now, I’m weaning off…something like the 95% thing, but I’m not calculating exactly. And now I am on a strict alkaline diet because anti-inflammatory drugs don’t work for the back pain anymore. Hopefully I can reverse the damage before it becomes a chronic disease. Coffee is yummy, but should be treated carefully, like alcohol or cigarrettes. 2 shots of espresso in the morning on an empty stomach was were it all started for me!

  7. My reduction programme

    This is going to sound geeky, but…

    I started my reduction programme a few weeks ago. Each day I take 95% of the caffeine I had the day before. I measure my intake in terms of mounded desert spoons of coffe grounds (I don’t drink tea or cola and I don’t eat chocolate). To avoid having to weigh out grounds precise to a gramme, I round off the value to the nearest half a mounded desert spoon of grounds. I use a spreadsheet for all this. At the end of this week I’ll be down to half a mounded spoon of grounds a day (i.e. one rounded one)

    In the past I’ve tried simply cutting down by half a cup a day and found that rate of reduction too steep. When I got to zero I got withdrawal symtoms that I couldn’t tough out and failed.

    OK, I’m not down to zero intake yet and the test comes when I am. But I’m down to a fraction of what my intake was and I’m not feeling much worse than I did before I started cutting down. I recommend this method.


  8. Less energy? Stick with it…

    A number of years ago I quit caffeine as many others have. I “faded” but a little quickly and my headaches only lasted a few days. I know that these symptoms do vary.

    At first I was very distressed that I was very tired after taking out my normal caffeine intake. I wondered how I would ever manage to much if I remained so tired. To my surprise, after a couple weeks I found that not only did my energy levels returned to normal, but, without caffeine, I actually had more energy that I had when I was drinking two or three sodas at a time.

    I am not sure if this is consistent with others, but if you notice that your energy levels are down after being off of caffeine, stick with it!

  9. Caffene withdrawal

    I am going through my third time quitting and it seems that each one is more painful and lengthy. I was drinking 10 or more cups per day. I am sure caffeine is contributing to my high blood pressure problems.
    I drank about 1/2 my usual on coffee on Thursday and then only had 1/2 cup on Friday and none on Saturday. I felt just awful, I could not get out of bed, I have severe aches and pains in my chest and in my back. These are continuing but are moderated by taking IB profin as a pain reliever.

    The malaise and lack of ability to move has not been helped. I broke down and had 1/2 cup of coffee about 1/2 hour ago and I am beginning to feel a little better. I plan to try 1/2 cup a day through Thursday and then go cold turkey again and see if I can get through the weekend with out a relapse.

    Any suggestions are welcome. Thanks

    1. caffeine withdrawal

      This worked for me when I quit my 5-cup/day habit. I took No-Doz to ease the withdrawal. First thing in the morning, take a pill to ward off the headache and gradually cut the pills down until you are taking just tiny slivers. After a few days of taking tiny amounts of the pills you can stop taking them at all and you won’t get that nasty I-need-a-cup-of-coffee headache. Hope this helps

    2. Robert,
      My concern is with


      My concern is with why you keep going back to caffeine after you’ve quit. Is it because you feel you need it? If you are getting enough good quality sleep, eating reasonably well and such, then you shouldn’t really feel the need to reach for the coffee.

      If you still do, though, you might want to think about seeing a doctor. Sleep apnea can cause serious daytime drowsiness, and so can depression and other medical conditions, most of which are treatable. Once you get clear of the coffee, this time if you feel like you want to start reaching for it again, ask yourself why. Are you feeling drowsy? Lethargic? Lack of enthusiasm? After taking stock of your symptoms, then see the doc and report them to him.

      One thing I’ve noticed is that I used to get REALLY drowsy in the few hours after lunch. When I was trying a low-carb diet, I never felt drowsy after lunch. Now, I try to eat a low-carb lunch every day because otherwise I have to fight to stay awake all afternoon. I’ve heard other people say this as well–Scott Adams, creator of the Dilbert comic, said this on his blog.

      1. The importance of a good mood

        We all feel emotions, and as you may know, not all have the same values ​​or the same effects.

        When you wake up in a good mood in the morning, full of optimism, joy and energy, you feel good that these emotions are positive, they make you happy and productive. In contrast, when the dice morning you feel tired, tired, demoralized, irritable, your chances of having a good day are slim. Thus, certain emotions are more positive, others are rather negative.

        We each have our character that makes us globally lean to one side or the other of the scale. When some are généralements optimistic and cheerful, others are bitter and acrimonious. Others, again, vary in balance. We also know minimal changes from one day to another, and even happier to have at one time or another felt demoralized, angry or upset.

        However, it is that emotions are communicative. Have you noticed how some indivduals are able to share their optimism and cheerfulness to their environment? Faced with someone particularly open, kind, generous and smiling, you do not have the reflex to turn your smile? In contrast, people are rude and sarcastic painful, they irritate us and annoy us. Positive feelings call other positive feelings. Negative feelings call other negative feelings.

        You are never left in a particularly friendly shopping a little happier when you’re home? And you’re never left with another merchant bitter and a little less bad mood that you do not have penetrated?
        Emotions are communicative

        All this involves a very serious consequence. It stands for the emotions you express have a direct impact on your environment. The world can be seen as a huge balance on his plateaux containing huge reserves of power balancing positive and negative about. And you can at any time, to support the finger on one or the other of the plates.

        So when you express positive feelings, such as complimenting someone, showing kindness, generosity or gratitude, you instill a little positive in your environment. Conversely, if you show malice, selfishness or pettiness, or whatnot, you will help to make the world worse than it is.

        This is true at different scales. For example, the evening meal with the family may be a good time if you show lively and entertaining, but you might as well show you cold and brittle and thus spoil the ambience. More generally, every fan can help change a football match in wrestling. Obviously, the larger the scale considered is large and less isolated individual holds power.

  10. caffeine levels

    Another thing to consider is what kind of coffee you are drinking. Vietnam has recently become the worlds second largest coffee producer, and almost all of it is Robusta. The supply of cheap Robusta flooding the market has driven prices down and thus made its use more popular for some companies. (i.e. Folger’s is about 33% Robusta)

    Robusta beans can contain 2-4x as much caffeine as Arabacia beans. Selecting 100% Arabacia could be a good first step to lowering you caffeine intake.

  11. No Doz Dangers

    I’ve never been a coffee drinker. Too bitter and too hot. I’ve been a Coca Cola drinker all my life. I still am except now I normally drink caffeine free (which is hard to find, unless it’s also diet). My addiction is to No Doz. It started in college. I’d take a Vivarin or two while cramming for a test. At this point…no problem. In later years I worked as a bartender in a very, very busy place. Before leaving for work I would sometimes take a No Doz. Still no problem. But then that No Doz started to be everyday. Begin problem. At some point I started taking them in the car on the way to work because I had been in a hurry to leave. Swallowing them, without water was difficult so one day I decided to chew instead. Sure it was a little bitter but it seemed to have a slight mint flavor. Increase problem. Then I started to take “nibbles” off No Doz throughout my shift and later throughout my day. For the last 12 plus years, I have had a No Doz addiction. I now chew over 4 per day. That’s about 900 mg. If I don’t have No Doz I feel horrible. Taking it is not an option. You call that an addiction. My blood pressure is about 143 over 97. I blame No Doz. I am again going to try to quit, but it is hard to do. My warning is this: if No Doz helps you quit then fine, but it is a bit like an alcoholic trying to stop a beer addiction with shot of vodka. Be careful.

    1. Re No Doz dangers

      Hello, it’s a long time since you posted and I was wondering how you’re doing? It’s perhaps too late to offer advice but, for anyone else reading this and having a problem with No Doz, I’d say that caffeine is caffeine, however, you take it and the approach is much the same. You can either go cold turkey or try to wean. 900 mgs of caffeine is a lot of caffeine and, in this situation, I think I’d try to wean myself off, cutting down to three quarters of a tablet X 4 per day for maybe a week or two then half a tablet X 4 per day for a week or two etc etc.  Or try whatever method of cutting down which seems right for you and listen to your body. You’ll know when it’s adapting to the weaker dosage and you’ll begin to feel slightly better. After failing to go cold turkey (coffee) for 9 months, I’m trying weaning and having some success – so it can work!  I’d also say try to keep your diet as healthy as possible and try to eat a good balanced diet of good quality protein, grains, EFAs, vegetables and fruits.  Drink water and try to take some light exercise (a walk is great) and get outside in the fresh air/sun.  Good luck to anyone having problems with ANY form of caffeine! Jackie.

  12. Any advice on weaning, please?

    Hello, it’s me again :/    I’ve been trying to stop drinking coffee since last March (2012), without any long term success. I think that in trying to ‘go cold turkey’ many times, I actually made my addiction worse. Eventually, it seemed that I had deepened my physical and psychological need for caffeine, as in trying to be ‘all or nothing’ (and with my eating habits, as well), I just couldn’t make that transition for any length of time. All I could think about, all of the time, was when I was going to have my next cup of coffee, Like an alcoholic, the first thing I wanted in the morning was coffee. Coffee was my crutch for all of my problems and fears and I really did feel like I couldn’t do without it.  At Christmas, I was back up to my 6 large mugs a day and I was eating tons of sugar/biscuits/cakes etc. After Christmas, I felt so awful (same old story!) and I really felt utterly defeated. I felt I had no willpower and was a complete failure. Worse, I was scared for my health as I felt really ill and like a zombie for most of the time, on ly managing to do my day with caffeine. And yet, I couldn’t sleep.   But then I read something and  it gave me hope. An addiction site said that when a habit or pattern of thinking and behaviour is deeply ingrained, willpower alone won’t change it. It said that you have to slowly work at CHANGING THE PATTERN and that cutting down on caffeine is the way. So I got my food back in order (again!) and started cutting down on the caffeine.  From 6 large mugs a day, I’m now down to 2-3 – and I have been making it gradually weaker, as well.   I’m from the U.K. so am happy to drink instant coffee – so that has less caffeine in it than Starbucks coffee etc. When I go to a coffee house (which I do with my daughter – I can’t not go!), I ask for steamed  milk and slip in my own brew of weaker instant coffee at the table! I’m happy to say that on most days, I’m only having 60 to 90 mgs of caffeine compared to 500-600, although if I get really stressed, it’s up to 120.  But I think the point is, I’m making progress and won’t give up as I now feel like I do have a way of actually getting off caffeine.   I’ve also been adding some ‘No Caf’ to my coffee, which is caffeine free and made from barley, figs etc. I’m hoping that I’ll be able to make the transition from coffee to all ‘No Caf’, eventually, and that then, hopefully, I won’t need it, at all.  I wanted to ask, please, if anyone has any advice about when I make that final leap and stop caffeine, completely?  Part of me is still scared to make that leap and feel I  might try to hang on to the weaning process. I’d be very grateful for any tips or shared experience.  Thanks and I hope everyone I knew from last year is still doing well. 🙂  Rob, I was so pleased to read you’d done it – brilliant news!  And John C – amazing to see you still on here, trying to help people!  🙂  Jackie

    1. weaning

      I got off cold turkey and it wasnt easy . I went through hell with it .I only took off from work 1 day and that was the day right after I pretty much went cold turkey my body went through a big shock needless to say . I slept alot that day . I still slept that night . Feburary will make 4 months I have been caffine free but it can take 6 months to a year before you really stop the withdraw symptoms mine are getting very mild once in a while I have a panic attack but its very mild and I just take deep breaths know if I can cut back on smoking . Im proud of you for what you have done keep it up and good luck its not easy. There are alot of people that are hooked on caffine and its hell realizing and quitting it . I have found that if you dont want to eat breakfast drink a breakfast drink w lots of vitamins its helps alot also drink a glass of orange juice in the morning it helps with the anxiety and helps build ur body back up .  

      1. Thanks, Richard 🙂

        Thanks for your reply, Richard, and congrats on being caffeine free for nearly 4 months – that’s a big achievement! Also, thanks for sharing your story and for your encouragement and advice – greatly appreciated. It’s a hard road for anyone and any support is very helpful . 🙂 Good luck to you and I really hope you stay the course. 🙂 Jackie

    2. Hey Jackie


      Good to hear from you and good to see you’re still trying to quit – I’m coming up for 6 months in early February and feel so much better for it. If I could only deal with the sugar I’d be laughing 🙂 Sounds like you’ve got that one sorted, which is great. It’s next on my hit-list.

      The amount of coffee you drank was about the same as mine. I couldn’t stand instant coffee (unless desperate) so would drink around half a dozen black filter coffees a day from Pret a Manger (I’m in the UK too), Starbucks etc. I know what you mean about the zombie feeling – I felt awful without it and almost worse with it. Whatever happened I had to have it and I always felt bad !

      I tried weaning a number of times – by trying to drink less or weaker drinks (tea rather than coffee, fewer coffees and so on) or by using caffeine pills (Pro Plus) as a substitute (a bit like the patches for smokers). I’d figure out how much caffeine I was using, take about the same in pills, spaced out over the day, then reduce by 50mg (one pill) a day. From the research I did this seemed to be the recommended amount to reduce by, but could do quicker/slower I guess, whatever works for you.

      I found weaning didn’t work for me though. It may be just the way my mind works, but as soon as I had any caffeine, I’d think “what the hell” and start drinking coffee like normal again, promising to start again tomorrow. This pattern went on for literally years and became very wearing – I was mentally exhausted, demoralised and frustrated. It’s only a cup of coffee for god’s sake, how can it be so hard !?

      I finally quit cold turkey. I was going on holiday to the south of France for 10 days, where it was hot and I knew there would be no real demands on me. I remember swallowing a double espresso at 6 in the morning as I stood in the queue to board the plane and that was it. It wasn’t pleasant, but I managed to get through it. I’d say there’s a big “hump” you have to get through for the first 3-5 days, then a long “tail” where you feel a lot better, but not 100%. I think I’m probably still in the final stages of it now, about 95% better.

      The secret for me was acceptance – that I couldn’t use caffeine safely, it didn’t benefit me at all. I wasn’t losing or giving anything up, other than a problem. Most important was accepting that I would feel bad for a few days so it didn’t come as a surprise. In fact I’d done it before so knew what to expect. It is only a few days, not forever. Hanging on to this thought is really important as in the middle of withdrawal you can lose context and sight of the bigger picture.  

      It was tough – headaches, back aches, muscle aches, feeling sluggish and bleary, tired, grouchy etc. But if you time it right (like on holiday) it makes it a lot easier to cope and the heat in France helped a lot – both physically and in terms of habit – I wanted to drink coffee less than when it’s cold.

      The benefits are clear and I really don’t see myself going back to coffee/caffeine. I still get the odd craving but it passes quickly. In the past I’ve slipped and gone back, I know what misery would result (as you describe). I am mentally clearer, more energetic, more productive, sleep far better (the dreams are amazing !) and much much calmer and more pleasant to know. I save a fortune not going to Starbucks and other coffee shops. I really do recommend it.

      So probably not much help with weaning advice, other than it didn’t work for me. Someone said the way you take off a plaster (band-aid) shows you the best way for you – if you pull it off quickly in one go then you’re a cold turkey type person, if you ease it off bit by bit then wean. Neither is better than the other, they both achieve the same end result (provided you go through with it) so it’s down to you and how you like to operate.


      1. Thanks, Rob 🙂

        Hi, Rob, thanks a lot for your quick reply. Much appreciated,  It’s great to hear that you’ve now been caffeine -free for 6 months – that really is a massive breakthrough – you must be so pleased.  Big congrats! I really hope you can get off the sugar, too. As with coffee, I found it was all about changing the patterns.  Here’s a tip – although it will only work if you like bananas lol. Whenever I was craving something sweet, I’d have a ripe banana (or two) I LOVE bananas, anyway, but it really did help and now it’s like I automatically want bananas, instead of cake/pie. I also add a sliced banana to my (bland) breakfast  and it totally transform it. Doing something repeatedly changes the pattern and your expectations, I guess. If you don’t like bananas, maybe there’s something else (healthy)you could substitute. I also tried to make my main meal tasty, using spices, curry powder, chilli, garlic etc. It seems to pacify the cravings. To help me sleep before bed, I have oats soaked in soya milk with (you guessed!) a sliced banana. Both oats and bananas are soporific, though, and they do help me to sleep. BTW, it changed to bold below and I can’t seem to change it. Sorry.
        Anyway, back to the coffee. Your reply gave me much to think about and made me realise what’s important for me and how I can do this.  I think you helped me to realise, as I said to Marc, that I have to find my own way and that, if the only way I can do it is to wean, then that’s what’s right for me. This might seem obvious – but I’d been beating myself up FOR MONTHS about the fact that I couldn’t go cold turkey!  In my heart, I really did know that I could  not do it.  But now, I believe I CAN wean myself off – and that belief is what’s going to be my saviour. That sounds a bit OTT but that’s how it feels. A lot of your reply helped me to understand more about how my mind works – the patterns/my addictive personality etc.  I’ve been addicted to sugar etc for getting on for 60 years (I’m 62) and that DEEPLY INGRAINED pattern of eating has been a major problem all of my life. I believe that the addictive properties of coffee – both physical AND psychological – are part of that BUT I would like to say that I never had any problems with coffee until I started drinking the higher strength Starbucks, Costa coffees etc. The psychological ‘comfort’ element of hot, milky, sweet coffee is very strong for me, too. For example, Pro-plus, tea, coffee made with hot water and a dash of milk would just not do it for me. Anyway, what I’m trying to say, is that I think I’m just realising that I need major re-training and that I must see it as a very long term and active process. You can’t undo all those years in a couple of weeks. Phew! Well, sorry to ramble but it’s really helped me to sort things out a little and see the reality of my situation.  Once again, thanks so much, Rob – a lot of what you shared really helped and I’m genuinely glad you’re doing so well. Btw, where are you? I’m in Leicestershire.  Good luck to you and everyone. Let me know how the sugar detox goes. Jackie

    3. Hi Jackie

      Yes, I took the wean path myself.  Over a five month period, I went from about 800-1000 mg/day to 0 mg/day.  Well, that’s partly true.  I now drink decaf only, which I know does have some caffeine in it.  I am now 50 days ‘clean’ and feel much better.  Although I do have some PAWS now and again, but they’re getting milder and milder each time.  I can honestly say it was worth it for me. I also know many folks hate the taste of decaf, so it may not be a viable option for all. 

      Weaning seemed to help with the physical withdrawals, but the anxiety just lingered on through the process.  If I had to do it all over again, I probably would have taken a year to complete the weaning process (as opposed to five months).  Again, that’s just me.  Coffee has never been part of my social life, so I think that made it a bit easier for me to give it up.  My real passion is beer 😉 , which I’ll probably never give up.  LOL

      Best of luck to you.  I know it’s not an easy thing to do.  The rewards are greater than the pain you’re going through.  I know it’s easier said than done, but it’s the truth.  Keep us posted on your progress. 


      1. Thanks, Marc

        Thanks for your quick reply, Marc, I do appreciate it. 🙂  First, big congrats on your success – that sure was a lot of caffeine you were having! – and it does makes sense to come off it slowly. Your story really does give me hope that it’s possible to wean , even if it takes a while. I think I always felt that I OUGHT to go cold turkey, even when I knew I couldn’t.  A couple of things you said struck a chord. First, you said – “that’s just me” – and having read lots of the stories on here, everyone seems to have to find their own way and it’s clear to me now that I need to find my own way, too – whatever it takes. Also, you said that coffee wasn’t a part of your social life – but that’s how I began drinking coffee again about 6 years ago (after not drinking it or being addicted to it for a long, long time. I swear it was the higher strength Starbucks, Costa coffees etc that created my addiction.). It still is part of  my social life but I do now believe I can eventually go to a coffee house and NOT drink coffee! Hope that makes sense. Anyway, enjoy your beer (you must be from the U.K., too, LOL), good luck and thanks again. 🙂 Jackie

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