One personal lesson in detoxing that I have learned over the last 2 years is about caffeine. The first time I cut caffeine out of my daily routine I decided to do what everyone said NOT to do, I went cold turkey-suddenly no coffee or my beloved green tea. I thought that it would be easy, I usually only have a few cups of coffee a week and daily green tea, but I was so mistaken. Not surprisingly, the massive mind scrambling headache came first on Day 1. Then the big surprise, Day 2 and 3 I experienced deep, constant pain in my hips. I thought I had the flu! By Day 4, both the hip pain and headache were gone. What a relief, those were very rough, grouchy days.

The next 2 times I did a detox, I took a more compassionate approach. Or you could say I followed everyone’s advice: wean yourself slowly. Switch to decaf, cut back to 1 cup a day, then after a few days, a half cup. Replace with lots of other warm liquids. My experience was so much smoother, and happier! I personally love letting go of caffeine because I notice an immediate improvement in the quality of my sleep, and better, sustained energy throughout the day. Many fewer ups and downs of mood too. I also love not feeling like I “must have my tea” before my day begins. It is empowering and enlivening.

Why I want to detox from caffeine a few times a year:

* Disrupts my sleep, and good sleep basically keeps me sane, healthy, and happy
* 2 cups of coffee raises homocysteine-a bio marker for inflammation and heart disease (Dr. Daniel Amen)
* Dehydrating to both my brain and my body. Enough said.
* Also restricts blood flow to the brain thereby “you get premature aging, lousy memory and brain fog.” (Dr. Sarah Gottfried)
* And is linked to raising cortisol, which signals the body to store fat!

Photo: La Colombe Coffee, a great coffee when you’re not detoxing.