Look. I am not here to ruffle feathers, or be that controversial guru from your social media feed… but some things need to be said. Here’s one: Coffee is your enemy. (Yep. I said it). Now let me explain. Things are not as black & white as they sound. To help you understand a bit more about why Coffee is not helping you as much as you hoped for, let me share how caffeine (the main reason we drink coffee for) works in the body and also answer the question how long does caffeine stay in your system.
Thanks to the caffeine in coffee, it is a fast-acting stimulant. It is transported into your central nervous system and from there activates its effects. It can increase your blood pressure and heart rate, boost your energy, and improve your overall mood. Some of these effects are certainly great (more energy & better mood) yet the increased heart rate and blood pressure can cause issues in the long term.
Usually, you feel the highest effects from drinking coffee between 30-60min. after consuming it, which is why many people have several cups of coffee a day. Here is where it gets tricky.
How long does caffeine stay in your system?
Caffeine has a half-life of 5 hours, that means it takes your body 5hrs to reduce the amount of caffeine intake by 50% – now you still have the other 50% left in your body, which then takes often longer than 5hrs to eliminate completely.
The average time that caffeine stays in your system is between 8-12hrs. That means that drinking coffee after 12pm can (and most likely will) already disrupt your sleep. And you don’t even know (or realize) it.
Talking about sleep, did you know that sleep deprivation is one of the main causes for a hell lot of mental & physical health symptoms?
Just see what even 1hr of sleep deprivation (let alone regular lack of sleep) can do to your body:
Why do people crave caffeine?
A lot of people’s energy dips after lunch time or in the late afternoon. There’s an easy solution to getting back to energy & into laser focus, at least that’s what we think: Caffeine. Most people will grab a coffee, black tea, or any stimulant to help with the energy dip, simply because they don’t know how long does caffeine stay in your system. But as you have read above, it only gives you an energy peak of about 30-60min. Oftentimes what’s happening after is it either goes back to your normal or crashes right back into a dip.
These extreme highs and lows are very unhealthy for your body, especially your heart that has to pump. Today I want to share with you 3 tips to increase your energy while in a dip – without any of the stimulants that will deprive you of your sleep.
The first tip is to know what snacks and drinks will help you to be more productive without experiencing a lack of sleep.
Cut the sugar, caffeine and other stimulants and go natural: Almonds, Cashew nuts & Walnuts (if you are allergic please choose an alternative here) are great snacks and resources for the brain & body. Cutting veggie sticks and fruit and eating throughout the day, especially when low on energy, is super helpful too.
Fruit sugar is not damaging as some people would want to make us believe. Fruit is actually incredibly helpful and necessary for the body & brain and to detox the daily toxins from the body.
Bonus: Fresh lemon juice infused water and herbal teas such as butterfly pea tea, or lemon balm tea make a great drink throughout the day.
Dance like nobody’s watching
We know that exercising helps to increase energy, but many people simple don’t appreciate the power of dancing. You don’t need to be a dancer to do so, but simply move to music.
Put on some uplifting music that will get you straight into a good mood – and then dance. Move your body. It doesn’t matter if you know the latest tik tok choreography or if you simply throw your arms in the air and wave like they ain’t got no bones! The science behind that is clear: Dancing helps to activate and regulate your nervous system, which will decrease any fight/flight state you may be in. It also boosts your energy and increases your mood.
What it also does though is, building new neural pathways with the deeper emotional connection that the music activates, plus the movement that reinforces it in our body. So even if you feel weird first, your body will remember the sensation of a balanced nervous system and the increased energy and connect it to your favorite song.
Ice Cold Face Wash
When your energy is low, you feel unfocused, and even when you feel nervous or anxious, this is the tool for you! Take a bowl and fill it with cold water – then add a tray of ice cubes (yep. Just trust me). Get a towel ready and maybe do it in your bathroom or kitchen so you can splash around a little.
Then ready – 3,2,1 – Hold your breath, dip your face into the bowl, and stay a few seconds, then take your head back up. If the bowl is big enough, do the same with your arms. Dip them into the water, leave them in there for about 10 seconds, then take them out.
Repeat this 3 times each! Not only will you feel super refreshed but the ‘shocking’ sensation of cold, is a pattern interrupt to your brain. It can not hold the anxious feelings but instead starts pumping blood into your brain which increases oxygen levels and hence energy.
With these 3 tips you’ll be able to keep your energy up throughout the day, prevent any dips, and you’ll be able to go to sleep with ease.
Have any other tips to keep your energy up?
Let me know in the comments down below!