Dare to Decaf?

You love coffee.  Does it love you back?

Caffeine impacts each of us differently. Whether your body processes caffeine slowly or quickly may even be genetic. Some of us don’t do caffeine after 11 am.  Others can drink a lot of caffeinated coffee at bedtime and sleep fine! And still others feel the jitters from just one caffeinated cup.

And for some of us, our caffeine tolerance even seems to change over time. In college I could drink a whole pot of coffee at bedtime, no problem, and now that is definitely not the case!

The seeds for Savorista Coffee were planted when I gave up caffeine during a period of high stress. That stress is long gone, but I’ve stuck with decaf. Why? I love how well I sleep and wake up in the morning. For me, it was well worth breaking that caffeine roller coaster that many of us know far too well. I relied on those first two of cups of coffee in the morning to kick my day into gear, and my 3 pm crash would make me crave a caffeinated brew at work. And what did this leave me with? Sleepless nights and a dependence on my coffee. No, thanks! The crazy thing is I thought this was normal!

Maybe you don’t need a break from caffeine. But maybe, just maybe, it’s worth finding out how a decaffeinated you feels.


A Coffee Lover’s 30 Days of Decaf

I spoke to Rachel Dillon, the Cold Brew Chick and host of the podcast by the same name, who is known for her love of caffeinated cold brew coffee. Last summer she did a 30 day decaf challenge, which she called “Please Drink Responsibly.” With peaked interest, I called Rachel to get the details on why a cold brew connoisseur would decide to switch up her caffeine game for one month of decaf:

Cold Brew Chick Drinking Cold Brew

Savorista: Rachel, tell me more about why you decided to switch to decaf for a month.

Rachel: Before I started Cold Brew Chick, I generally drank just one cup of cold brew per day. One year into CBC and my caffeine consumption was at an all-time high. I even had withdrawal symptoms when I skipped caffeine for a day.

When I started feeling the effects of over caffeination, I started "please drink responsibly". I knew my audience consumed a lot of coffee. And I wanted them to be aware that caffeine is a drug. It’s not water, it’s not something our bodies need. It is something that we should drink responsibly.

And at the same time, decaf coffee is still coffee. I’ve always thought that if you are a true coffee lover, you would still drink decaf. I looked at this as an opportunity to explore decaf.

Savorista: I completely agree! I think true coffee lovers drink for the taste and not the caffeine. Did you wean yourself off the caffeine or go cold turkey?

Rachel: I started to wean off of it a bit, but I found I didn't have major symptoms, so I went cold turkey from there.

I’d suggest if you typically drink 5 cups of coffee per day, maybe reduce to a couple cups a day first. If you drink just one or two cups of coffee each day, you could try to cut it out at once. I’d suggest testing one approach for one to two days and see how the withdrawal symptoms are, decide from there.

Savorista: I’m glad your transition was easy. How did you feel when you gave up caffeine?

Rachel: I felt great. When I drink caffeine I get the caffeine high right after drinking it and then the withdrawal lows later in the day. When I drank decaf, I felt a pretty even and stable energy throughout the day. It wasn’t as high as the caffeine high, but it was never as low as the withdrawals.

Overall it was a great experience, I’m so glad I did it and I would definitely do it again.

I encourage all coffee lovers to try it!

Savorista: Based on your experience, who do you think should take a caffeine break and try 30 Days of Decaf?

Rachel: Definitely people who are experiencing unwanted symptoms of coffee consumption. We drink coffee for alertness and the coffee high. But maybe you get that high for a shorter amount of time or you have an energy slump in the afternoon. Or maybe you no longer get the coffee high at all.

Even if you aren’t experiencing symptoms, for many people it is helpful to take a break, stop and reset. And then get back to caffeine. Honestly, it’s a lot about learning about your body and listening to yourself.

Savorista: Rachel, do you have any advice for others considering a 30 days of decaf?

Rachel: I tell everyone to look at decaf as an opportunity to explore coffee for what it is. Don't look at drinking decaf as punishment. People look down on decaf because there is no caffeine. But if you truly love coffee, you probably love it for the taste. I recommend using decaf as a way to explore other aspects of the world of coffee.

Savorista: Thanks Rachel!


Want to join us for 30 days of decaf?

If you are a coffee lover who wants to try a month without caffeine, comment below and email us at hello@savoristacoffee.com to let us know you are doing 30 days of decaf and we will give you a special discount on our Savorista craft decaf coffee to support you through the month.

2 comments

Yvette Johnson

I would love to hear how you make your cold brew!

ShawnMarie Frazier

Would love a blog post on using your beans for cold brew.

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