My Big Caffeine Addiction – The Cavalier Daily

I think my love of caffeine started sometime in high school, when I would wake up to the aromatic scent of my older sister’s freshly brewed coffee. At the time, she was in high school, an age my parents considered old enough to drink coffee. Even though she was told not to, she would let me sip her coffee in the mornings, as long as she kept it a secret. I didn’t know it at the time, but that slow introduction to coffee and caffeine set the stage for what I now call my big caffeine addiction, and yeah, that’s totally a play on the movie, “My Big Greek Wedding.” and fat.

It’s been a long time since those high school days of sneaking coffee and now I can drink it, along with any form of caffeine, freely. Caffeine means so much more to me than just that original invigorating aroma. It’s very much a means of keeping me going. For example, my morning cup of coffee is my lifeline, and without it, I know I won’t feel awake enough during the day and therefore won’t be in a very good mood.

Now, I had never given all of this much thought until recently, when I was standing in my kitchen after a trip to the grocery store. I was in the process of putting away the various groceries I had bought for the next week and saw the amount of caffeine I normally consume.

Not only do I use the Keurig in my apartment for my morning cup of joe, but I also keep a bottle of cold brew concentrate in my fridge at all times. Along with this, I am always stocked up on Celsius, which is a type of healthy energy drink and Verb energy bars which are snack bars that have as much caffeine as a single espresso. Despite all this, I often find myself buying some kind of caffeinated beverage, like matcha or a mocha latte, several times a week.

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This realization was profound for me. Personally, I don’t think I should consume as much caffeine as I do on a daily basis, nor do I think it’s healthy for me to do so. In fact, I’ll get headaches throughout the day if I don’t drink my typical amount of coffee. It’s almost like a withdrawal, and that feels horrible to admit. As a 21-year-old, I shouldn’t be at a point where that happens; in fact, I don’t think I should allow myself to be at that point regardless of my age.

Having said all that, I’m trying to be intentional about exactly when and how much caffeine I consume. I’m planning to start slowly by trying to include more natural means of caffeine, like drinking green tea instead of a black coffee in the afternoons. From there, I hope to slowly detox by removing a form of caffeine from my regular routine. Ideally, this will mean that instead of consuming caffeine four times a day, I will only do it once or twice.

I am by no means a health expert, I am simply someone who has realized that he is too dependent on caffeine on a daily basis and wants to remedy it. I don’t think the journey will be perfect or easy, especially as the semester progresses, but I am willing to put in the effort to improve one aspect of my life.

Also, I envy those of you who don’t have an addiction or even an affinity for caffeine. I have a few friends who function just fine without caffeine and I really wish I could be me. Even with these changes, I don’t think I’ll ever get to that point. A part of me doesn’t care about that, though, because I will always treasure those stolen first sips of coffee that got me into this little mess.

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Zoya Zahid is a life columnist for The Cavalier Daily. You can reach her at [email protected]

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