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    1. #1
      Member blue_space87's Avatar
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      Dec 2008

      Question Caffeine abstinence

      I understand that many health benefits shroud the reasoning for consuming caffeine in small quantities, but I'm unsure as to whether one may experience enhanced cognitive performance over a particular duration of time if absent of any form of intake of the drug - would one encounter equivalent or enhanced cognitive performance if omitting the intake of caffeine from their diet? Or, would they experience a particular decline in cognitive performance ergo to this?

      In short, I'm uncertain as to whether I should resume my intake - should I drink three or more cups of green tea a day, reaping its many health benefits, or by omitting caffeine would I be forcing my brain to secret the necessary chemicals responsible for sustaining enhanced cognitive activity/wakefulness? (Thus far since late-March, I've mostly been drinking water, orange and semi-skimming milk)

      Any help is greatly appreciated!

    2. #2
      How tall is your orange? Moonsong's Avatar
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      Jun 2008
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      It kind of depends on whether you're trying to take in the benefits of the caffeine, such as the jittery alertness. If so, you can't really take it regularly, because your body does develop a tolerance to it, just like a host of other drugs. If you want a cup or two of tea a day you should be fine, then you get the antioxidants and such but only have to consume a few cans of soda if you need the extra perk. I'm trying to limit my caffeine too, so I've put some thought into it, and this is kind of my plan.

    3. #3
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      I don't think that stopping will improve your preformance very much, but if you regularly ingest it and then just quit cold turkey then you will most likely have some withdrawl symptoms. However, doing the opposite and dirnking a large amount of it suddenly will be detrimental ot your health.
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    4. #4
      DuB is offline
      Distinct among snowflakes DuB's Avatar
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      Green tea has very little caffeine in it; less than black tea, which still doesn't have that much. This is just an estimate, but the caffeine in three cups of green tea is probably not much more than the caffeine in one can of coca-cola, which is still less than half of an average cup of coffee. So you're probably just fine with your current green tea regimen.

      That said, it probably couldn't hurt to abstain completely. I recently abstained myself because during the academic year I had been consuming about half a gram of caffeine (approx. 5 cups of coffee) per day and I figured that I should give my body a break during the slower summer months. I quit cold turkey and it was surprisingly easy. I think it would be especially easy for you: just switch to decaffeinated tea. Half of addiction (assuming you're addicted, which you may not be) is the behavioral patterns involved, so continuing the ritual of drinking green tea should make it completely manageable.

      As far as health benefits or detriments, studies routinely indicate that caffeine use in moderation is not only harmful but may have some health benefits. However, there is certainly a downside once you become addicted. When caffeine addicts use caffeine, they don't actually experience a boost like ordinary users; they are perpetually in caffeine withdrawal, and using caffeine simply brings them back up to "baseline," the state they would otherwise be in if they simply didn't use. So you should judge for yourself how dependent on caffeine you are and choose accordingly. I suspect that if you made this thread, you are probably at least somewhat dependent. Even small amounts of caffeine, if taken daily for extended periods of time, can foster addiction. My dad is completely addicted to the caffeine in soda, which really isn't that much caffeine... but that fact doesn't make the headaches go away.

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