To caffeinate or not to caffeinate

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Ellie
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To caffeinate or not to caffeinate

Post by Ellie » 03 Jun 2014, 13:01

Internet confession: I'm in the process of decaffeinating, and I used the site search to see if we had a thread about coffee and soda, and just in the Grylliade 3.0 iteration I found SO MANY SEPARATE INSTANCES where I was saying, "I figured out too much caffeine fucks me up, so now I'm going off it completely!"

This forum is a monument to my inconstancy. :lol:

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Highway
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Highway » 03 Jun 2014, 13:11

I've probably said it on other threads where you said that, but I found it much much MUCH easier to limit caffeine than to get rid of it completely. Now I have two cans of caffeinated soda a day, at fairly set times. That gives me flexibility if I need to drink something with caffeine at a different time, without giving me the withdrawal symptoms again.
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Warren
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Warren » 03 Jun 2014, 13:22

Highway wrote:I've probably said it on other threads where you said that, but I found it much much MUCH easier to limit caffeine than to get rid of it completely. Now I have two cans of caffeinated soda a day, at fairly set times. That gives me flexibility if I need to drink something with caffeine at a different time, without giving me the withdrawal symptoms again.
Two cans of caffeinated soda a day is addict level. Two cups of tea a day is where limiting caffeine intake starts.
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tr0g
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by tr0g » 03 Jun 2014, 13:31

Warren wrote:
Highway wrote:I've probably said it on other threads where you said that, but I found it much much MUCH easier to limit caffeine than to get rid of it completely. Now I have two cans of caffeinated soda a day, at fairly set times. That gives me flexibility if I need to drink something with caffeine at a different time, without giving me the withdrawal symptoms again.
Two cans of caffeinated soda a day is addict level. Two cups of tea a day is where limiting caffeine intake starts.
12 oz of Coke: 23-35 mg caffeine
8 oz green tea: 24-45 mg

Care to try again?
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Highway
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Highway » 03 Jun 2014, 13:34

Whatevs. There's a tangible difference for me between two cans and more. And yeah, it's probably addict level (because I do get headaches if I don't drink it), but it's not burdensome. And it's not burdensome in the way that no caffeine ever is, either.
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nicole
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by nicole » 03 Jun 2014, 13:47

Ellie, are you a tea drinker? I don't do a ton to actively limit my caffeine intake, but I do basically continuously drink tea all day long--but rebrewing the same leaves all day (or for a couple days, or maybe two batches in a day, all depends on the tea). Anyway, only the first and maybe second brewing actually have caffeine. I like to just spend the whole day slurping a pot of oolong or green or white tea and find it very stabilizing. YMMV.
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dhex
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by dhex » 03 Jun 2014, 15:31

Warren wrote:
Highway wrote:I've probably said it on other threads where you said that, but I found it much much MUCH easier to limit caffeine than to get rid of it completely. Now I have two cans of caffeinated soda a day, at fairly set times. That gives me flexibility if I need to drink something with caffeine at a different time, without giving me the withdrawal symptoms again.
Two cans of caffeinated soda a day is addict level. Two cups of tea a day is where limiting caffeine intake starts.
soda - not even once.
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Ayn_Randian
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Ayn_Randian » 03 Jun 2014, 15:36

Highway wrote:Whatevs. There's a tangible difference for me between two cans and more. And yeah, it's probably addict level (because I do get headaches if I don't drink it), but it's not burdensome. And it's not burdensome in the way that no caffeine ever is, either.
I will very nicely, very respectfully be a total pedant with Warren here and say that addiction requires adverse consequences when engaging in the addiction. Highway has a small amount of chemical dependence on caffeine, but he's not an addict by any stretch of the imagination.
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tr0g
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by tr0g » 03 Jun 2014, 15:48

Ayn_Randian wrote:
Highway wrote:Whatevs. There's a tangible difference for me between two cans and more. And yeah, it's probably addict level (because I do get headaches if I don't drink it), but it's not burdensome. And it's not burdensome in the way that no caffeine ever is, either.
I will very nicely, very respectfully be a total pedant with Warren here and say that addiction requires adverse consequences when engaging in the addiction. Highway has a small amount of chemical dependence on caffeine, but he's not an addict by any stretch of the imagination.
There's multiple competing definitions of addiction. One of them is the physical dependence on the substance such that cessation produces withdrawal. That's old school physical addiction, and by that definition, most habitual caffeine users are addicts. C'est la vie.

The definition has since been broadened to include adverse effects and things other than chemicals. I tend to think, from a strictly pedantic viewpoint, that one should speak of physical addiction as addiction. The secondary compulsive behavior bs the psych industry attached to the word should be described as something else.

Of course, most people don't like being told they're caffeine addicts, even though they are. This is but one of many reasons why physical addiction got deprecated.
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D.A. Ridgely
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by D.A. Ridgely » 03 Jun 2014, 15:55

The expanding notion of addiction is, however, problematic for a number of reasons. Yeah, going cold turkey on caffeine may result in a day or two of headaches but it's silly to implicitly equate that with alcohol or heroin addiction. Yeah, also, people have "cravings" and obsessive / compulsive attitudes and behavior toward gambling, sex, probably everything else. Again, expanding the notion of addiction to include all of those does more in my opinion to trivialize serious addictions than facilitate whatever sort of help may be needed in being weened off the rest of the ever expanding list.

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Number 6
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Number 6 » 03 Jun 2014, 16:03

I'm physically dependant on caffine. And I'm fine with that. I don't have that many vices any more, and I genuinely love strong, dark coffee.
My name is Number Six, and I'm a caffine addict. And I don't care.
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Ayn_Randian
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Ayn_Randian » 03 Jun 2014, 16:05

I find the physical dependence vs addiction distinction more useful and accurate than just old school physical addiction. I also agree with DAR.
It has the effect of making me want desperately to do the opposite of what Green Day is suggesting I should want to do. Billy Joe Whassname may have created a generation of war mongers. - Jason L

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Number 6
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Number 6 » 03 Jun 2014, 16:09

I actually agree with DAR and AR. The only real adverse effect of my dependence on caffine is that I spend a fair amount on coffee. That could be mitigated if I were willing to buy the crap that comes in cans, but damn it, I will maintain some expensive pleasures, and good scotch is (usually) out on my budget.

As for the physical effects of caffine, it seems to be a push. There are some physical problems associated with it, but also benefits. The one thing I know for sure is that if I ever develop supra-ventricular tachycardia, adenosine will absolutely not work on me. It's straight to the zappers for this guy.
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Aresen » 03 Jun 2014, 16:11

D.A. Ridgely wrote:The expanding notion of addiction is, however, problematic for a number of reasons. Yeah, going cold turkey on caffeine may result in a day or two of headaches but it's silly to implicitly equate that with alcohol or heroin addiction. Yeah, also, people have "cravings" and obsessive / compulsive attitudes and behavior toward gambling, sex, probably everything else. Again, expanding the notion of addiction to include all of those does more in my opinion to trivialize serious addictions than facilitate whatever sort of help may be needed in being weened off the rest of the ever expanding list.
My take on the list of 'addictions' is primarily that the person purveying the notion is 1) looking for someone to blame for his/her own failings, 2) someone who is trying to elevate their personal beliefs into a national cause, 3) trying to work themselves into a position of a professional advocate to make a living off the 'problem', 4) a bureaucrat trying to extend his power and reach, 5) a combination of some or all of these.

I am very hard-ass on all addictions: You made the decisions that got you where you are. Don't ask me to pay your way out.
Number 6 wrote:I'm physically dependant on caffine. And I'm fine with that. I don't have that many vices any more, and I genuinely love strong, dark coffee.
My name is Number Six, and I'm a caffine addict. And I don't care.
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by thoreau » 03 Jun 2014, 17:24

D.A. Ridgely wrote:The expanding notion of addiction is, however, problematic for a number of reasons. Yeah, going cold turkey on caffeine may result in a day or two of headaches but it's silly to implicitly equate that with alcohol or heroin addiction. Yeah, also, people have "cravings" and obsessive / compulsive attitudes and behavior toward gambling, sex, probably everything else. Again, expanding the notion of addiction to include all of those does more in my opinion to trivialize serious addictions than facilitate whatever sort of help may be needed in being weened off the rest of the ever expanding list.
If the expansion of the word "addiction" in popular parlance and/or rehab industries means that people either trivialize serious problems or pathologize things that shouldn't be pathologized, I agree with you. However, I suspect that there are neuroscientists who might find it useful to refer to caffeine addiction/dependence/whatever and other stimulant addictions/dependences/whatevers by the same word because some underlying mechanism is similar in kind (if not degree).

Also, I sometimes find it rhetorically useful to remind people that low doses of stimulants like caffeine can result in addiction, yet that addiction is very different from crack addiction. I use this in the context of a discussion where I point out that legal cocaine might lead to more people scratching their stimulant itch with stuff closer to original recipe Coca Cola, or coca leaf tea (consumed by a great many people in the Andes, and they somehow manage to keep their jobs and take care of their families) rather than meth and crack. The point I'm making is that addictive substances can have different effects in different contexts, and prohibition might be making it worse rather than better.
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fyodor
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by fyodor » 03 Jun 2014, 17:44

People might be stupid, but most are not so stupid as to necessarily "equate" heroin addiction with caffeine addiction just because they're both described with the word addiction. It's pretty damn simple to understand that not all addictions are equal.
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by lunchstealer » 03 Jun 2014, 18:35

I almost never get caffeine withdrawal headaches or anything else, even though most days I'll drink the equivalent of two or three mountain-dew-level sodas, and when coming to the office regularly, two large cups of coffee. Yet some weekends will go by with zero caffeine intake whatsoever, and I almost never notice any adverse effect.
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Number 6
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Number 6 » 03 Jun 2014, 23:22

fyodor wrote:People might be stupid, but most are not so stupid as to necessarily "equate" heroin addiction with caffeine addiction just because they're both described with the word addiction. It's pretty damn simple to understand that not all addictions are equal.
The people who insist that cigarettes are as addictive as heroin suggest otherwise.*

*They're right in terms of relapse rates. They're wrong in that people don't die of nicotine withdrawl.
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Ellie
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Ellie » 04 Jun 2014, 09:53

lunchstealer wrote:I almost never get caffeine withdrawal headaches or anything else, even though most days I'll drink the equivalent of two or three mountain-dew-level sodas, and when coming to the office regularly, two large cups of coffee. Yet some weekends will go by with zero caffeine intake whatsoever, and I almost never notice any adverse effect.
*narrows eyes, glares jealously at lunchstealer*
nicole wrote:Ellie, are you a tea drinker? I don't do a ton to actively limit my caffeine intake, but I do basically continuously drink tea all day long--but rebrewing the same leaves all day (or for a couple days, or maybe two batches in a day, all depends on the tea). Anyway, only the first and maybe second brewing actually have caffeine. I like to just spend the whole day slurping a pot of oolong or green or white tea and find it very stabilizing. YMMV.
I'm not a tea hater, but I've never gotten very into it. I'm not a huge hot drinks person in general -- I like to gulp. And I have a mega sweet tooth, and the iced tea I've had was bitter. (Obviously I did not have any while I lived in the South and the tea has so much sugar your spoon can stand up on its own.)

Caffeine is associated with some positive health stuff (wow, look at how sciencey and well-documented that statement is) and I don't mind being somewhat physically dependent. I also like having an "out" for if I sleep poorly or go to bed way too late and am a zombie the next day. Mainly I am annoyed at how much money I spend on soda. I can't do coffee, even weakass Lutheran coffee, because I always accidentally have too much and then get crazy meltdowns.

Speaking of cigarettes, it's been years now since I had one and I didn't even like the last one I had, but for some reason I still have mad nostalgic cravings. Smoking at the bus stop when I was young and wild and in college; smoking at the sports bar when Peyton Manning was still playing for the Colts. Wahhhhh, I'm old!
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nicole
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by nicole » 04 Jun 2014, 09:57

It is WAY too easy for me to OD on coffee.
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dhex
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by dhex » 04 Jun 2014, 09:57

"sweet tea" is the fucking worst.
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tr0g
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by tr0g » 04 Jun 2014, 10:08

nicole wrote:It is WAY too easy for me to OD on coffee.
I have to strictly self regulate. I have my tiny 8 oz mug, and it gets filled up no more than 3 times in the morning. Otherwise, I get twitchy and irritable and slightly manic. Nobody needs to deal with that shit. It is good for everyone concerned that I am lazy, because if I had a lot of energy I'd be (more) insufferable.
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Warren
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Warren » 04 Jun 2014, 10:20

Number 6 wrote:
fyodor wrote:People might be stupid, but most are not so stupid as to necessarily "equate" heroin addiction with caffeine addiction just because they're both described with the word addiction. It's pretty damn simple to understand that not all addictions are equal.
The people who insist that cigarettes are as addictive as heroin suggest otherwise.*

*They're right in terms of relapse rates. They're wrong in that people don't die of nicotine withdrawl.
I've not heard of anyone dying from heroin withdrawal either, but I'll take your professional word for it. It's certainly easier to OD on smack than cigarettes. OTOH cigarettes were by far and away the hardest things for me to quit. And they remain the only drug I had to quit because if I smoke one I'll smoke another, and another and... Not alcohol, cocaine, or the aforementioned heroin have been able to sink their hooks into me. I can, and do, use them recreationally.

When it comes to caffeine, I had to cut back when I hit middle age. In my youth I could inhale cola and coffee by the gallon. And I'll still drink coffee by the pot, but only if I cut it with decaf. After a couple cups of regular I start to get twitchy. Not just wired, but headaches, muscle spasms and other symptoms.
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nicole
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by nicole » 04 Jun 2014, 10:36

tr0g wrote:
nicole wrote:It is WAY too easy for me to OD on coffee.
I have to strictly self regulate. I have my tiny 8 oz mug, and it gets filled up no more than 3 times in the morning. Otherwise, I get twitchy and irritable and slightly manic. Nobody needs to deal with that shit. It is good for everyone concerned that I am lazy, because if I had a lot of energy I'd be (more) insufferable.
I am exactly the same way. But I'm allowed only 16 oz in the morning.
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Rachel
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Re: Internet Confessions

Post by Rachel » 04 Jun 2014, 14:59

Number 6 wrote:
fyodor wrote:People might be stupid, but most are not so stupid as to necessarily "equate" heroin addiction with caffeine addiction just because they're both described with the word addiction. It's pretty damn simple to understand that not all addictions are equal.
The people who insist that cigarettes are as addictive as heroin suggest otherwise.*

*They're right in terms of relapse rates. They're wrong in that people don't die of nicotine withdrawl.
Quibble: Physically withdrawing from heroin is very, very difficult but it can't medically kill you. Heroin physical withdrawal lasts about 30-45+ days and will make you wish you were dead. Physically withdrawing from alcohol can kill you, but the worst is over in 3-5 days.
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