Okay, I’ll admit right now – I’ve never been addicted to coffee. Lucky me.

No particular reason for that, but just like I never bothered to start smoking cigarettes, I never took to coffee drinking either.

Well, lucky me, but perhaps not lucky you. Maybe you are a coffee addict and would like to quit. There are plenty of good reasons to quit caffeine – one is your skin! Caffeine directly acts like stress in your body by releasing the cortisol hormone from your adrenal glands. It also sends you on blood sugar swings, which then causes the release of excess insulin and androgens, which can lead to acne.

I’ve said all this before, so I won’t harp on…

I’m here to direct you to a very interesting article I read a while ago. It suddenly popped into my head yesterday because my dad announced that he was quitting coffee cold turkey. 

Now, my dad (no offense Dad) can often get his cranky pants on at the best of times. And since I’m living at home with him while Luke and I look for a place to live, I was slightly alarmed at what was to come as he went through coffee withdrawal… which I hear can be pretty nasty for up to two weeks or even longer!

So I quickly got on the ol internets and brought up this article from Cara at her Health, Home & Happiness blog and plopped it in front of his face to read.

Apparently Cara and her husband quit coffee cold turkey with the help of an amino acid supplement called D, L-Phenylalanine (DLPA) and didn’t experience any withdrawals at all.

Here’s what her blog says about DLPA:

D, L-Phenylalanine (DLPA) is used by the brain to produce norepinephrine (our brains’ version of adrenaline), a neurotransmitter depleted by stress, caffeine, nicotine, pollution, and some pharmacological and recreational drugs. Source

When you’re low on dopamine, you feel dull, unmotivated and tired. Nothing seems very interesting. When left to yourself you might sit in the same spot for hours. This can feel terrible!

Fortunately, there’s a simple way to boost dopamine levels. The amino acids L-tyrosine and DL-phenylalanine (DLPA) are your body’s natural dopamine precursors. When you take L-tyrosine and DLPA as supplements, your body converts them into dopamine, and your alertness and energy level get a boost.  Source

Caffeine gives us a temporary lift by sending norepinephrine into the blood stream. Over time, healthy levels of norepinephrine are depleted by caffeine and other factors mentioned above … if not replaced.   Phenylalanine does a great job replacing this major neurotransmitter. Source

She says that DLPA has no side effects, isn’t habit forming, and actually corrects an imbalance in your brain rather than just force adrenaline out like caffeine does. She also says it seems to give her a nice energy throughout the day, but not in a crazy wired way like from coffee.

Anyway… just go read the article.

Happy quitting 🙂

Are you or have you ever been a coffee addict? Have you ever tried quitting? What were your experiences?

photo by donga bs