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Jul 24 2015
by Sandy Gooen

Living La Vida Mocha: How to Avoid Caffeine Addiction

By Sandy Gooen - Jul 24 2015

Chemical dependences are detrimental to physical health and academic performance. The addiction to caffeine is no exception to this fact. While caffeine can have many health benefits, overuse to the point of reliance has long-term side effects.

Here are five alternatives to drinking caffeinated beverages.

1. Water

Caffeine leads to dehydration and can actually leave you more tired after the initial energy boost. Water can actually give you more energy in the long run.

2. Decaf

If you miss the taste, but don’t want the side effects, remove the power that soda, tea or coffee has on you. Make it your choice. Start with half-caf or eat dark chocolate, though, because quitting cold turkey results in symptoms of withdrawal.

3. Exercise

Endorphins relieve tension and give you a rush that lasts longer than the synthetic energy provided by the typical morning coffee.

4. Food

Another way to get ATP to your brain (rather than inhibit it) is to eat. Simple sugars and lean proteins are often referred to as “brain food.” Blueberries, anyone?

5. Sleep

Your brain is being tricked into believing that you are alert, when, in fact, you have had better days. Even a short nap will help you in the long run.

I don’t believe caffeine is always a bad idea, but just like anything else in life, use everything in moderation.

Lead Image Credit: Nathan Allworth

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Sandy Gooen - Barnard College

Sandy Gooen is a first-year at Barnard College studying neuroscience and music. She loves rugby, writing and performing. She’s best known for spontaneous jump-splits. She once took her cello, Tawny, to banquet as her date. You can check her out on Facebook as herself or on as Di Gaon!

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