Thursday, July 18, 2013

A Little Less Caffeination

I was not a coffee drinker. Not for the longest time. I remember trying Starbucks when I was about 18 and it was the new thing in town. I would occasionally get something sugary and frothy at 7-11 when I had early mornings in college. But just brewing a pot? That wasn't something I ever thought I'd do.

In late 2006, a friend brought me some quality ground coffee from a trip to Seattle. I didn't even own a pot. I wanted to be able to tell him that I tried it, so I went to Target and bought the smallest $12 4-cup coffee maker I could find. I didn't care for the coffee, but now I had a coffee pot...and when you give a mouse a cookie...

Fast-forward to now, 7 years later. I drink a lot of coffee. I take insulin to cover it some of the time because my continuous glucose monitor has proven to me time and again that an 8 oz cup gives me a 30-40 mg/dL bump in blood sugar. I'm better about accounting for it in my dosing in the morning than I am later in the day.

When I tell people I drink too much coffee, they always commiserate and tell me they do, too. Then I tell them I drink at least 6 cups a day and they go "whoa, okay, I don't drink that much."

I don't need it. I drink it because I like it...because I'm bored...because my blood sugar might be high and I'm sleepy...because my kids wear me out...because it's easier to brew a lot than a little...because it's there...because it's tastier than water. But I drink too much.
Between the Splenda, the sugarfree Coffee Mate, and the caffiene,
I usually need to count a cup of homebrew as about 10g of carb.
It's not particularly good for me. I don't drink anything else caffeinated most of the time, but still, with about 100mg of caffeine per cup, I'm getting way more than the 200-300mg recommended max intake for an adult. And let's not mention a nursing adult.

I haven't seen any negative consequences of this level of intake though. The caffeine doesn't make me jittery, it doesn't seem to affect the toddler I'm breastfeeding (just makes me feel guilty), and I have to admit that I get a restful 7-8 hours of sleep per night.

But I came back from the Friends for Life conference with a lot of energy (of the mental variety) and a lot of new goals - which I'll discuss in another post soon - but I am starting with the goal of a little less caffeination, a little more action, please.

So I'm cutting back. To 3 cups from 6. I did 4 yesterday. I'm doing 3 today.

I hope to accomplish the following:

  • better blood sugar control, specifically in the afternoon when I have the most trouble and forget to bolus for it anyway
  • make better choices about hydration and more effective sources of energy
  • admit that I think too much about caffeine and that I have a psychological hurdle to jump
  • spend less money on coffee, sweeteners, sugar free creamer, etc
I woke up this morning with a 24-hour no-hitter. So far, that's a sign of success.
As for the "more action" part, that's still rolling around in my brain for another post perhaps, but it was fascinating listening to my husband report his FitBit stats to me all week knowing that I was walking most of those steps right along with him. And doing it with less coffee in my system, too.


  1. I don't drink as much as that, I try to limit myself to 2 cups/day (but I don't regulate the size of said cup...) The point of my comment though: I also have a hard time remembering to bolus in the afternoon! Why is it easy to remember to bolus in the morning with NO caffeine in my system and harder in the afternoon when you know there is actually caffeine working somewhere in there?!

  2. I have also decided to cut back on my coffee consumption. You and I drank about the same amount per day. It doesn't seem to effect my bg (T2) but I just recently read that drinking too much coffee can keep you from losing weight! That's my goal, to see if cutting back will get me past this weight plateau I'm languishing upon. Good luck to the both of us!

  3. I've been cutting WAY back on the diet (usually caffeinated) sodas - most days I have none. And: my night-time rumbly tumbly has gotten WAY better. May be the caffeine, may be the acid in the cola, may be a complete coincidence. Good on you!

  4. I've gone cold turkey a few times (including one for approximately 35 weeks...and after the recovery room and seeing her in the NICU, my husband brought me a Diet Coke) and it's tough. Some experts have talked about how large amounts of caffeine can impact blood sugars but I tend to push the limit. Good luck!

  5. I have a caffeine issue as well but mine is combination of tea, coffee, and diet coke. I can drink them all day if I am not careful but thankfully I am also good about drinking water as well.

  6. I have cut back on my coffee intake (for now) but I do LOVE the taste of coffee. Coffee ice cream? OMG, yes please!!! I think its harder for me to cut back in the winter actually. It's so cold in my office and gets dark earlier that come December I am excited to finish lunch to make more coffee. Good luck of your mission! You can do it! xo

  7. your coffee looks so yummy. so creamy. yum yum yum.

  8. Ok I m curious is your new goal part of a session take-away?
    Why the change?
    Also on a side note - Im sorry I didn't stop and chat with you when we were both in Florida. It is a huge regret of mine. I kept thinking there would be more time. I would see you and your beautiful kiddos and be on my way from one place to another and think "I need to stop and visit" but crazy is as crazy does and before I knew it the conference was over and everyone was headed back to the real world.
    Can we get a do-over. I want to squeeze your littles cheeks. :(

    1. No, not a session take-away. Just a general realization. I am still waiting for the emailed photos from the retinal scan people - probably my biggest a-ha moment of FFL - so that I can blog about everything I thought about, but in general, I can't stop thinking about standard deviation (a takeaway from both the retinal scan and Damiano's APP presentation) and I've been thinking about all of the small changes I can make to improve mine.

      Also, I drank a lot less coffee in Florida because it was a good 1000 steps roundtrip to go refill my tumbler from my room. (Haha) It made me realize I don't need so much at home.

      And also, also, YES, we didn't get two words together. Sorry. :( Just another reason I need to come visit the bay area again.

  9. Hard for me to cut coffee as it has replaced desserts. :)