Day Seven: No Caffeine

It’s almost been a full week since I gave up caffeine. The headaches are over (I hope) and I’m starting to feel almost normal. I still miss it! Although food is tasting normal, it just doesn’t have the same draw that food with a diet Coke or diet Pepsi had. My office mate walked in this morning with two diet cokes and I actually started salivating. One note; my father had promised me that if I stopped the caffeine I would stop grinding my teeth. This is false. Don’t believe people when they tell you this. Caffeine does not make you grind your teeth. Or if it does, once the grinding becomes a habit, stopping the caffeine will not stop the grinding. So much for saving on the dental bills.

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Making a commitment

Well, I think it’s time to formalize my commitment to regaining my health. I have decided to officially give up my diet drinks. This is hard for me. I don’t drink coffee. My Diet Pepsi or Diet Coke (I’m not particular) is important to me. It’s the way I wake up in the morning. It’s the spice I add to otherwise boring meals (salad). It takes pizza or tacos or burgers to a new level and makes them truly extraordinary. I’m worried, however, about the use of Aspartame. I have been experiencing some Lupus-like symptoms and as Aspartame has been linked indirectly to Lupus (in multiple conspiracy theories) I feel like I need to give it up. I’m just having a little trouble convincing my subconscious. I unofficially gave it up two days ago. This is my desk today.

coke on the desk

I’m weak!

I told myself that I would stop drinking them this weekend, when the caffeine withdrawal won’t be so detrimental. But I have a whole refrigerator full of Diet Coke and I wonder how strong I will be when I hear them calling my name. It’s just that plain old ordinary water is just that. Plain, old, ordinary and does absolutely nothing for a meal.  I realize caffeine is highly addictive and not very good for you. It just helps so much, especially during meetings. I’m afraid I may go into shock without my diet soda. Then the emergency responders will have to hook me up to a Cola IV. I wonder if my veins will like diet soda as much as my mouth does?

diet coke iv

Mmmmm refreshing!

I taught a medical terminology class this year and had to re-familiarize myself with facts about the human body that I hadn’t considered since nursing school. One of the more interesting is that the body, much like our planet, is composed of nearly 75% water. Diet soda is not a good substitute for water. Cells deprived of water tend not to function normally. Organs and body systems deprived of water can shut down completely. Humans usually don’t fare well when an organ or body system shuts down. Hypovolemia (severe dehydration) is one of the leading causes of stroke and cardiac arrest according to the American Heart Association (ACLS). Yet, I would willingly ignore the warnings about Caffeine and Aspartame if I could just shake the feeling that they might actually be true.

The age-old choice

The age-old choice

Are there any other diehard diet soda fans out there? Which would you choose?

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