Sleep is one of the most important things in my life, right up there with breathing and eating. For several years I suffered from varying degrees of insomnia, due to thyroid imbalance and menopause, probably exacerbated by moderate caffeine consumption. I have been caffeine-free for two years now, (well, I do have a little dark chocolate on occasion) my thyroid and estrogen levels have been stable for months, and I've been sleeping very well... sometimes amazing myself with six hour stretches.
I also quit coffee, because I thought it was giving me heartburn... even decaf caused it.
And instead of my beloved coffee, I learned to like a grain beverage made with barley and chicory called Pero.
Recently, a little article in Prevention Magazine caught my attention. (Sept. 2010, p. 22). It stated that one cup of coffee per day lowers the risk of early death from all causes by 37%. I thought, maybe since I've been sleeping so well lately, one little cup per day wouldn't hurt. So on Saturday morning, I indulged in a cup at the hairdresser's.
Within about 20 minutes I had a light buzz on and was chattering away with the gal who was cutting my hair. I was fairly energetic for the rest of the day... felt great! No heartburn either. Then at 10 pm when I usually start feeling sleepy, I was still wide awake. I was still wide awake at 11 pm, in bed, staring at the ceiling. At midnight I fell into a light sleep after doing relaxation techniques that I haven't needed to do for months. I woke up every couple hours for the rest of the night and had trouble going back to sleep each time. Needless to say, I was exhausted all day yesterday.
So, coffee has gone back on my short list of no-no's. And as for all those diseases that I'm not preventing by not drinking coffee... I think I'd rather sleep.