Addicted to caffeine?

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– Here, have some coffee. You gotta get your fix, anyway.

There’s a wide grin on my friend’s face as he offers me a cup. I understand him. He wants to be nice to me. After all, he knows I love good coffee. But does this mean I’m addicted to it?

My good wife used to think so. Every now and then, she used to suggest it would be good for me to take a little break from coffee. So I did. For a week. What happened? Headache, anxiety, depression, irritation, tremors, or abnormal heart rhythms? No. Nothing.

But she wasn’t convinced yet. After a while she wanted me to try it again. So I did. I took a break. For a week. This time, I admit I felt it on the first day. I had to force myself a little to stay alert at a work meeting. But other than that, nothing. The second day was normal, as were all the days after that. Yes, I did miss my delicious espresso, but I didn’t experience any of the other symptoms usually associated with caffeine withdrawal. And no, I didn’t look for alternative caffeine sources, such as energy drinks, strong tea, or anything like that.

I’m not saying this to brag. I do know some people run into problems if they miss their morning cup. I know many clinical studies show that some caffeine users become neurobiologically dependent on the substance. I’m also aware that coffee drinking may promote behavioral addiction.

What I am trying to say is this: Not everyone who loves coffee is addicted to it. Not everyone who drinks coffee does it for the ”fix”. I certainly don’t. Admittedly, I don’t dislike the slight light-headedness you get from the second Moka pot—IF you choose to have a second pot. On an early Monday morning that can be the perfect choice. But I don’t crave for it.

– But that’s exactly what an addict would say, isn’t it?

Yes, I’ve heard it.

How you want to see my coffee drinking is up to you.

I drink quality coffee simply because I love everything about it. That’s why I cherish my freedom to have a cup of coffee if I want to. But I also cherish my freedom not to have a cup, if I don’t feel like it. But usually I do.

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