Establish a Caffeine Cut Off Time

Today’s Tip: Create your caffeine cut off time. Establish a time each day that you will stop drinking caffeine.

Do you have trouble falling asleep at night? Do you wake up during the night? When you wake in the morning do you still feel tired?

If you answered yes! to these questions and you drink caffeine throughout the day, it is highly likely your intake it contributing to your poor quality of sleep!

I hear it all the time…caffeine doesn’t effect me anymore. I can drink it up until bed time and sleep soundly. I smile, and nod and then kindly explain that even though we may feel like caffeine isn’t effecting us, and even though when we lay our heads down on the pillow we fall asleep easily…that caffeine is most definitely impacting your quality of sleep throughout the night. And if you find yourself mindlessly reaching for another glass of the most commonly used stimulant in America first thing each morning just to get through another day, then you most certainly are being effected by caffeine.

Don’t worry I’m not here to tell you to give it up! I’m just here to help you be smarter about your caffeine intake so that you get the quality sleep you were designed to enjoy.

The half life of caffeine in approximately 4-6 hours in the human body. This means that once you consume your morning cup of joe it takes about that long for your body to eliminate half of the drug (yes, drug) from your system. The remaining caffeine can linger in the body for a very long time, sometimes up to 12 hours or more.

Here’s How: First, decide what time you want to be in bed, head on the pillow, eyes closed and snoozing. Then subtract at minimum 8 and up to 12 hours from that time. Voila! You have you caffeine cut off time.

[time you want to be asleep] - 8 hours [minimum] = your caffeine cut off time

I like to be asleep by 9pm if possible (I know, I’m an old lady, but I value my sleep above almost anything else). I subtract 9 hours from 9pm, so my caffeine cut off time is noon sharp. I know that when I consume caffeine even just 30 minutes after this cut off time it will interfere with my sleep. Believe me, I’ve tested this time and time again!

Give it the 24 hour challenge. If you successfully accomplish establishing a caffeine cut off time AND sticking to it for in the next 24 hours, then try to do it successfully for a full week. And remember, we are all different, so play with the cut off time if you need to in order to ensure the best night of sleep possible.

I’d love to hear about how your caffeine cut off time challenge went. Makes sure you email me your experiences at dietitianabby@gmail.com or join the Ditch Dieting Forever group on Facebook and share your experience there!

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