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Why I Don’t Drink Coffee
I find it interesting that I hear people complain about the cost of organic eggs being $6 a dozen but the line for a $6 Starbucks mocha frappe is out the door!
My post will not be the most popular blog post. Most of you would rather listen to the arguments that coffee is healthy or it raises ketones. The truth is often hard to hear and addictions are hard to break. I waited way too long to write about why I do not drink coffee.
It is a joke in my family that I am the Energizer Bunny! I have more energy now that I do not drink coffee and it is a better feeling energy! I don’t have the drop in energy once the caffeine is out of my system.
I also want to bring to attention that when you drink a bulletproof coffee in place a real breakfast, you are missing out on nutrient-dense foods such as eggs or beef. It is also easy to drink calories in excess, where chewing your food signals hormones and tells you that you are full and satisfied. Keep in mind that if you drink bulletproof coffee in an effort to “fast” until noon, you are no longer fasting. Consuming more than 40 to 50 calories generally takes you out of intermittent fasting, which is a powerful tool for ketogenic dieting.
Adding fat to coffee just to reach a percentage is a mistake that many people make with a keto lifestyle. A keto-adapted body can burn body fat and dietary fat equally. So if you are adding extra fat to your diet (in the form of bulletproof coffee, fat bombs, and so on), then your body will use less body fat and more dietary fat for fuel, resulting in less body fat loss. And if you are leaner, this can actually have bad effects on triglycerides and health (more HERE).
I understand the love for coffee! I worked at a coffee shop since the age of 15 and I drank coffee nonstop! However, I kicked that addiction for many reasons and I want to tell you why it may be helpful to quit coffee too!
1. Coffee Increases Blood Sugar and Lowers Insulin Sensitivity
On average, coffee will increase blood sugar by 8% for someone with metabolic syndrome or Type 2 diabetes; which the majority of the population wouldn’t pass a Kraft test and have some metabolic damage.
Caffeine also lowers your insulin sensitivity. This is not a good thing, it means that your cells no longer react to the insulin as much as they once did, which causes your body to make more insulin. This is the main reason I cut coffee! It was holding me back from healing my body!
But cutting coffee, you most likely will be able to lose the weight if you have been stuck for awhile.
“So…I was very resistant to giving up my beloved coffee. I have been eating this way for a year and a half for health reasons but also to lose the covid weight I had gained. After 25lbs lost pretty quickly I have stayed the same weight which I was fine with but sort wanted to lose another 10 or 15lbs. After 2 weeks of no coffee, 9 pounds gone….just like that. No other changes. I don’t even miss the coffee.” – Lani
2. Coffee Increases Hunger and Cravings
Once I finally cut coffee, my hunger and cravings were under control. I also hear this from clients all the time! But it makes sense! If you don’t mess with your blood sugar (reason #1 to cut coffee), this will also control your hunger and cravings. What goes up must come down. When you first take a sip of your coffee, hunger will most likely go away because blood sugar is increasing, however, when you stop drinking coffee, blood sugar will fall and hunger will increase more than if you would have skipped the coffee.
“Hi Maria! I stopped drinking coffee (yup, I drank a lot of coffee for a long time – first thing in the morning big pot) and I was suffering big time – but I stayed with it. THE MOST AMAZING THING IS THAT MY CRAVINGS STOPPED. Now – I am in control. I am in control of what I eat and how much I eat. I write everything and yes, I am counting my macros. For most people it will sound silly – but when yesterday my son and I had dinner – your rueben pork chops from the cleanse book – I stopped when I was full. Just 2 weeks ago, I would go till the end, till the plate would be empty. And to me – THAT’s huge. Well, of course I lost 8 pounds – but that number is not as special to me as the feeling of having the ability to choose the food, to stop, to feel satisfied and truly full. I hit it hard in my cross-fit classes now! Thank you for giving me the tools to start my journey – “The 30 day Ketogenic Cleanse” explained it all and made it simple. I do not follow the exact plan – rather I choose the recipes I like and go for it.Sincerely,
“Maria was right about coffee, caffeine in general (still drinking green tea now) but cut out coffee last few weeks, my hunger dissipated, I even think I’m leaning out. Wild!And something happened recently where I thought I was falling off the ketogenic wagon for good. The beautiful thing about taking time to discipline and get into ketosis and stay disciplined with diet and tracking macros for months, preferably over 6, it was 9 for me, you get fat adapted. So say accidentally you ate more broccoli one day, or part of a sweet potato at dinner with family, some people will be metabolically flexible to get back to ketosis quicker and not completely lose all the hard work of becoming fat adapted. I’m so thankful to have found that out because sometimes you have to fall down and get back up and keep going. Salt salt salt and electrolyes, for proper electrolytes function and to keep hunger at bay. Keto on! Thanks Maria and Craig.” Ginamarie
3. Caffeine causes Sleep Issues
Many clients I work with have hard time staying asleep. Even if you can stay asleep, 6 hours of sleep is not enough!
Caffeine is a stimulant for the brain. This will have an affect on sleeping patterns and we as the quality of the sleep. When my clients cut out all caffeine, they see improvements in the quality of sleep they get every night.
Even if you aren’t drinking coffee before you go to sleep, it can still have an affect the amount of solid sleep you get. While we were in Ethiopia adopting our boys, the Ethiopians held a coffee ceremony for us at 8pm (the photo below is from the coffee ceremony). I pretended to drink the coffee they made special for us but they noticed that I didn’t drink it and they asked if something was wrong. I kindly explained that I would not sleep if I would partake in the ceremony. They thought I was a little crazy, but I wasn’t about to drink the extremely strong coffee before bed. This photo is from the coffee ceremony in Ethopia.
4. Coffee Contains Mold
When Craig was diagnosed with Lyme disease, he was also tested for mold and he was filled with it. That is what led me to research things that cause mold issues in the body. Coffee is one of them!
Coffee has mycotoxins. Mycotoxins are the toxic chemical that mold produces that commonly grow in crops that have long storage processes like grains, corn, and coffee beans. They are the cause of many health conditions and symptoms. One of which is it causes cell death in the brain and causes extreme dopamine depletion.
5. Caffeine Increases Androgens
Many of you know that I suffered from PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome). When a woman has PCOS the hormones get out of balance. One hormone triggers another, which changes another and the sex hormones get out of balance. In a healthy female body, the ovaries make a tiny amount of male sex hormones (androgens). In PCOS, they start making too much androgens. This often causes you to stop ovulating, grow excessive facial and body hair, and acne.
Someone with PCOS is known to have too much insulin, and are insulin resistant. When the body doesn’t use insulin well, blood sugar levels go up. Over time, this increases your risk of type 2 diabetes.
What causes PCOS? Excess caffeine and carbohydrates. If you want to heal like I did, you not only need to cut out the carbohydrates, you also need to cut out caffeine. THIS WAS SO HARD for me! At the time of my PCOS diagnosis, I worked at a coffee shop that made the BEST cinnamon rolls, scones, muffins and cheesecakes. GUESS WHAT? Whatever didn’t sell that day, went home with me! This is where I started creating low carb options for my favorite things like cinnamon rolls. It helped me transition off of my high carb lifestyle.
6. Coffee Stains Your Teeth AND Causes Tooth Decay
Even one cup of coffee a day will stain your teeth. I often get asked how I keep my teeth so white. Well, I do not drink coffee, tea or wine. Those 3 are terrible for staining your teeth because they contain tannins. Tannins cause color compounds to stick to your teeth. When these compounds stick, they cause an undesired yellow hue on your teeth. It only takes one cup of coffee a day to cause stained teeth.
Coffee can also cause tooth decay if you are putting sugar in it, which I hope you are not.
7. Caffeine Increases Anxiety and Can Effect Your Mood
Caffeine is a psycho-stimulant drug that works on an area of the brain called the central nervous system. It blocks a molecule called adenosine which causes the alertness, edginess and anxiety. This chemical process not only causes anxiety, it can also lead to a fast heartbeat, shakiness, restlessness, irritability, digestion issues, and frequent urination.
These effects can happen as fast as 45 minutes and last as long as 6 hours. Caffeine’s stimulates your “fight or flight” response, which can make anxiety worse and can even trigger an anxiety attack.
Don’t allow coffee or any substance affect your moods and the way you come across to other people. Coffee shouldn’t have any power over you.
8. Caffeine Increases Blood Pressure
Caffeine causes a short, but dramatic increase in your blood pressure, even if you don’t have high blood pressure. Studies find that the adrenal glands release more adrenaline which in turn increases blood pressure. Blood pressure also may increase because caffeine blocks a particular hormone that keeps your arteries widened.
If you suffer from high blood pressure, cutting coffee is highly suggested.
9. Caffeine Leaches Calcium from the Bones
“Hi Maria, I have to tell you 6 years ago I was told I have osteopenia, the beginning stages of osteoporosis. I started taking the supplements you recommended in my personal health assessment I did with you 6 months ago. Last week I had a bone density test and my results were astonishing! In fact the nurse was stunned. My hip area INCREASED 8.7% and my spine INCREASED 1.2%! She told me most women lose 1% per year while going through menopause. Thank you Maria for all your knowledge. You are amazing!” Lucy
10. GI ISSUES
If you have leaky gut, Crohn’s, colitis or IBS, coffee is most likely keeping you from healing your gut. This is because the caffeine blocks a molecule called adenosine which causes GI issues. The acidity also can harm the GI tract when there is already damage.
“Because of coffee’s acidity, it can adversely affect the lining of your stomach and intestines. If you drink a lot of coffee over an extended period, it will worsen any existing conditions you may have. If you suffer from GI problems like Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, or ulcerative colitis, you should not drink coffee, period. It will exacerbate your symptoms,” Dr. Khodadadian.
11. It is expensive!
Too often I hear people complain about the cost of organic meat and free range eggs. Instead of spending money on coffee which isn’t fueling your cells in a healthy way, why not spend the money on nutrient-dense protein like organic eggs or organic beef?
12. Coffee makes your cells LESS Insulin Sensitive
That means when you drink coffee, your cells don’t react to the hormone by as much as they once did. They don’t absorb as much sugar from your blood after you eat or drink. This causes your body to make more insulin, so you have higher levels after meals.
13. Coffee Increases Blood Triglycerides
Click HERE to read!
14. Coffee Increases Permeability of the Gut
The substances in coffee, even when consumed in small amounts, increase the permeability of the natural biological membrane in the gut system, which, in turn, may trigger inflammatory, allergic and autoimmune processes. The resulting inflammation can cause, among others, fatigue. These changes and processes are shown by laboratory tests.
Coffee also inhibits the absorption of certain nutrients, such as iron. Read more HERE.
HOW TO CUT CAFFEINE
I now drink ice-cold water in the morning with some Redmond Real Salt. There was a time when I loved coffee and it was a hard addition to break. To transition off of caffeine, I switched to decaf caffè Americano, then I moved to green tea, and then ice-cold water. Many times you don’t really want caffeine in the morning, but you want something warm.
Instead of decaf coffee, I transitioned by making a decaf Americano, which tasted amazing! When purchasing decaf espresso, make sure it is also decaffeinated using the Swiss Water Process (which most espresso is, as compared to decaf coffee which is typically a process using methylene chloride).
An Americano is a shot of espresso with hot water added to it. Espresso in general has less caffeine than coffee does — making it decaf ensures that you don’t dehydrate your cells further. Slowly lower your caffeine intake with a decaf Americano if you aren’t ready to just dive in and cut out caffeine entirely.
Caffeine Testimony from a Phone Client: “Morning! I just wanted to share quick about the coffee, thing! I’ve given it up for almost two weeks, and could it be possible that I would assist in my weight loss slump ending? Pounds have been rolling off again! I’m a happy camper!”
Testimony of the Day
“Hey all! I waited to have a full three months of success maintaining my weight because in all honesty that has never happened for me after losing weight. I have experience with WW and exercising my brains out, and any time I met my goal weight, and backed off my regimen, I gained weight back. Super frustrating. I have always been an active person that enjoys fitness but I also continually weighed the heaviest healthiest weight for my height. A year after having my third baby, at my heaviest weight, and age 40, I started working with Maria, and now I have been in the middle of my healthy weight range and am wearing the same size jeans I did in high school and college. That is amazing for a 41 year old woman who wore two sizes larger that last 12 years.
I was skeptical in the beginning about everything, especially the supplements. I decided that since she was only asking me to take them until I healed my body, it was worth the investment. I have to admit I did accumulate some debt changing over my entire pantry and purchasing all the recommended supplements. At about three months I decided I wasn’t going to repurchase an expensive supplement, but I was super crabby and short with my kids and decided I should get one more bottle because I just knew going off the supplement was the reason for feeling so edgy. Sure enough after a few days back on the supplement I was calmer and less irritable. After completing that bottle it had been six months and though I was afraid to not take it, I didn’t have any issues.
Healed? I think so! Maria also helped me identify a health issue the doctors kept labeling heart burn. She gave me delicious meal plans to keep the “heart burn” away. Too much dairy and I get a burning in my intestines I really feel in the late hours of night or early morning. No dairy no burning. I also learned that when I indulge in diary my skin breaks out. I suffered from adult acne until I ate the Maria way. Because of my burning tummy issues I also went dairy free for 4 months and had the most beautiful skin. Now I know the secret to beautiful skin for me.
I know I won’t be happy unless I I take care of myself, like Maria recommends. My biggest issue before working with Maria was not sleeping well. And that is what is most challenging not taking my supplements.
My honest testimony of my experience working Maria. I did it all. I put it to the test and now I know what is good for me, what makes me feel good. I couldn’t do it without Maria’s help!
In summation, I lost 30lbs, my acne went away, my stomach pain went away, my mood lifted, I am a better Mommy and better person, my husband enjoys this improved version of me, and I have great hope for a long happy life. Oh, and my numbers from my annual physical in June were perfect. Thank you Maria!”
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I don’t see it mentioned, but in the past your recommend Swiss Water Process Decaf. I’ve been drinking it for over a year… maybe you addressed this.
so … I shouldn’t drink that either? You are correct, it is not easy to kick coffee, and I find the swiss water decaf to taste as good as regular caffeinated coffees.
That is a better option than caffeinated coffee, but some of the issues listed above will still be there (mold, etc). 🙂
I love this article. I know I am very sensitive to caffeine and have stopped at times in the past, but then I creep back in. I have always been a black unsweetened coffee drinker, but this article has renewed my commitment to stop all together.
This article about quitting caffeine sure makes me think! Especially after being on keto for 1 1/2 years and having weight loss stall for nearly a year in spite of going to the gym and remaining active on non-gym days, and tracking macros. Very frustrating. Time to quit coffee and see wh as t happens.
Thanks! I have tons of clients that feel so much better when they omit coffee. 🙂
Hello Maria, just a question, did you stop Green tea only for whiter teeth or there is other reasons?
I also don’t think it is needed. It can also have oxalates. Just eat nutrient dense whole foods.
I am a Senior now and noticed that coffee to me does not taste as good anymore. When I am visiting my family in Germany I get the best tasting brew, it is never bitter ! Here in the USA I drink an organic blend , but I do not get the same enjoyment , God knows how many coffees I tried ! it is what gets me out of bed in the morning . Coffee has always been a highlight in my day. I gave up too many things to say good bye to this too. Before my mother retired in the evening, she would say* I freue mich schon auf meinen Morgen Kaffee *. She was famous for brewing the best !
I share your feelings, Barbara. Although I don’t doubt Maria’s research or advice, I so hated to read this article. Coffee is definitely a highlight of my day and so relaxing. At best I will try to cut down for now. Also, what does your mother’s saying mean in English please?
My coffee is almost a sacred ceremony to me! I do appreciate your stance though. I feel we all do our own thing and have the utmost respect for one another in regards to personal choices. You simply give people your personal take on things and I truly enjoy your articles. Thank you, Maria!
Knowledge is power. Thanks! 🙂
I stopped drinking coffee about 4 months ago and have replaced it with green tea. What are your thoughts on green tea? Any health benefits?
It is better than coffee (less mold issues, etc), but caffeine free is best. I would question any significant real health benefits though. 🙂
I would like to know more about drinking cold salted water. What are your ratio amounts…salt to water. And why I’ve cold?
I have started to not really want coffee. I am down to 1 cup a day. Would like to just stop.
Just tastes better to me. I like to do sole water:
Or just add an LMNT which has the right ratios of electrolytes. 😉
LMNT is super amazing.
Thanks for doing such a great documentation on why not to drink coffee. I started my journey towards a healthier version on me and it took me time to get to eat keto. However, the first thing I did was give up coffee, soda, juices.
I gave up coffee because I wanted a better version of me and didn’t need the stimulant to my nervous system. I wanted to be me all the time.
I really hate lethargic people in the morning, can’t understand why they just don’t wake up and move at the same pace…
I will keep this post in my back pocket to share
Coffee for me is not about the flavor or the caffeine. I don’t get that caffeine jolt and wake up from coffee, it is purely the comfort of a warm beverage. Especially in the winter. I’m a walking mail carrier and the best part of my day is the hot Americano I get from Starbucks. I kid you not. I love water also, but the thought of ice cold water does not sound comforting and almost makes my sensitive teeth hurt!
Try a cup of warm bone broth. 🙂
Thanks for a great article! I love your website!
I think I have been exposed to mold and am having issues related to it. Can you give me some direction on how to get tested and what the treatment for mold entails? Thanks!