Who Knew?

For the past couple of weeks I have been contemplating the idea of cutting back my intake of caffeine. If you know me, even somewhat well, you would know that I have a weird obsession with beverages. NOT alcoholic containing beverages, but any kind, really. Whether I'm thirsty or not, I almost always have a glass of something..whether it be Kool*Aid (Grape, please!), water, Diet Coke, Fresca..Diet Coke..Diet Coke..Diet Coke. I drink a lot of Diet Coke. I mean..A LOT. Here, let me paint you a picture. I go to the grocery ever week..and every week I purchase Diet Coke. A 12-pack (sometimes 24-pack, if they are on sale), and two 2-Liter bottles of Diet Coke. If I'm lucky I'll make it to my next trip without running out. Most of the time, I don't. This is just for when I'm at home. I get free fountain drinks at work. Hence more access to the DC. Sonic is a regular stop for happy hour half price drinks.
So..you get the picture? Oh, and I drink coffee every morning. SOO, I decided, for numerous reasons, that I was going to cut back on the Diet Coke (and coffee) :)

Great idea, right? Save the kidneys!! LOL. WRONG> I have been in the worst mood and sufferring from headaches that are almost as bad as a migraine! My goodness, you never know what you have until after it is gone!! I cannot even sit at the computer long enough to finish this blog. This single blog has taken me 2 days to finish. I am determined to finish it today. Crazy..I know. But, my eyes and head start pounding and it is just unbearable and not worth it AT ALL.
Anyway, so after I practically cried and then demolished my food processor (because it would not blend the marinara sauce I was attempting to make) due to shear intense frustration, I decided to read into this sort of 'withdrawl' I was going through. Withdrawl of Diet Coke? Yep. There is such a thing. But it isn't Diet Coke, it is caffeine.
This is a very real issue and has even been recognized by the World Health Organization. I found a website discussing this caffeine withdrawl syndrome.
Here is a bit about what I read:
The caffeine withdrawal syndrome has been well-characterized in numerous rigorous double-blind studies. The potential for caffeine withdrawal to cause clinically significant distress or impairment in functioning is reflected by the inclusion of caffeine withdrawal as an official diagnosis in ICD-10 (World Health Organization) and as a proposed diagnosis in DSM-IV (American Psychiatric Association).
Signs and symptoms. The most commonly reported withdrawal symptoms are listed below:
Headache – (often described as being gradual in development and diffuse, and sometimes throbbing and severe) Yes, I have this.
Fatigue -- (e.g., fatigue, tiredness, lethargy, sluggishness)
Sleepiness/drowsiness -- (e.g., sleepy, drowsy, yawning) Check
Difficulty concentrating -- (e.g., muzzy) Check
Work difficulty -- (e.g., decreased motivation for tasks/work) Check
Irritability -- (e.g., irritable, cross, miserable, decreased well-being/contentedness) Double Check
Depression -- (e.g., depressed mood) Not so much
Anxiety -- (e.g., anxious, nervous) Hmmm..
Flu-like symptoms -- (e.g., nausea/vomiting, muscle aches/stiffness, hot and cold spells, heavy feelings in arms or legs) Oh GOSH..not yet, knock on wood!
Impairment in psychomotor, vigilance and cognitive performances

The caffeine withdrawal syndrome follows an orderly time course. Onset usually occurs 12 to 24 hours after terminating caffeine intake, although onset as late as 36 hours has been documented. Peak withdrawal intensity has generally been described as occurring 20 to 48 hours after abstinence. The duration of withdrawal has most often been described as ranging between 2 days and 1 week, although longer durations have been occasionally noted.

So, 2 days to one week I have to deal with this mess. Whew. I have cut my DC habit to 2 cans/day. Maybe that was too much of a cutback to start with, Oh well, too late now. Still drinking my normal coffee in the morning, though, for now.

Wish me luck :)



Becky, Phil and Hayden said...

Holy cow, girl! And I thought Phil and I were bad when it comes to Diet Coke! (: Actually, Phil is probably right up there with you on the amount of DC drank (drunk? drunken?) each week. It's so addictive!! Good luck to you on your journey of DC restriction!

Jennifer said...

Good luck!!

Anonymous said...

Wow that is a LOT of caffeine girly! I think it's best you "bit the bullet", Ms. DIETICIAN!

My mom and brother get those same headaches when they cut the caffeine. It has never affected me too much one way or another.

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