Caffeine. America’s most popular drug. It helps keep us going. But taken form strong sources such as coffee and caffeinated soft drinks, we also experience the downside—irritability, stomach upset followed by tiredness and eventually the desire to have more caffeine.

Like most Americans I love caffeine and have for the better part of a decade and a half
probably have drunk more than most people do. Double and even triple espressos had been the norm for me.

But caffeine’s side affects have taken a toll over the years. Another problem that I had with drinking lots of coffee was the inability to get a good night’s sleep when I was so “buzzed.” Like many people who drink coffee, for example, I would sometimes have alcohol—a beer or two or equal amounts of wine just to counteract the effects of the caffeine. This would give me a poorer quality night’s sleep. I’d wake up tired and in order to get ready for my day, reach for a source of a strong dose of caffeine to get my day going. A bad cycle!

I know I benefited from getting energy from caffeine but increasingly was being harmed by its side affects. Drinking green tea seemed like a better way to get my caffeine. Green tea has a much lower amount of caffeine per serving (35 mg compared to 99mg in drip coffee.) Also, green tea is an unprocessed product –much healthier than carbonated beverages containing caffeine.

Like many folks who have wanted to switch to green tea, I enthusiastically quit coffee “cold turkey” and began drinking green tea. However, no matter how much green tea I drank, it couldn’t satisfy like coffee or other stronger sources of caffeine like coffee or sodas could. So, after a few days I was back to coffee and sodas.

My article “Feel Better-Help Your Liver Deliver” published on May 9, 2007 in Self mentions that to properly cleanse your liver, it’s necessary to go six days without eating animal products or drinking coffee. Doing my first liver cleanse, those six days of drinking plenty of fluids, and eating in a more healthy way for the cleanse (veggies, no animal products) cleaned out the coffee residue in my body.

The very next day after the cleanse I gave up coffee and switched to green tea. This time, by drinking plenty of fluids—mostly water, and eating more healthily, I stayed away from coffee and soft drinks and started to really enjoy for good green tea as my gentle source of caffeine that it is.

Of course, I’m not suggesting that you should go on a liver cleanse or become vegetarian just to successfully make the switch to green tea. The point is that by making is that if you have tried to switch to green tea from coffee but still miss coffee, you can make adjustments to your diet that will help you gain more natural energy that will go along with the energy gained from the more manageable amounts of caffeine you’ll get drinking green tea. Then, drinking green tea, for the most part, will give you all the caffeine you need—without the damaging side affects the coffee and caffeinated soft drinks can bring.