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Addictive Behaviours Discuss and receive support for addictions not related to substance use, such as gambling, Internet, sex or work addictions, in this forum.

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Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 17th 2012, 02:19 AM

So, for the past few years, I've had a pretty bad problem with energy drinks. It's only recently come to my attention that I am addicted to them.

Usually, on a daily basis, I'll have the recommended maximum consumption of energy drinks (according to laws/regulations in my country, it's roughly the equivalent of two cups of coffee a day), and I won't exceed it in fear of harming my teeth (which, as a packet-a-day smoker and some bad eating habits, that's inevitable). I've stuck to this for three years. I can't seem to concentrate or I get major headaches if I go without for a day. It's becoming a major thorn in my wallet and my livelihood.

I don't know why I drink it. It just seems to be a habit, but I know it's something more than that. Lately, my teeth have started becoming increasingly painful (this has happened before, then I gave up the energy drinks and they went back to normal), most likely because of the sugar. I have also recently had yet another bout of haemorhoids, most likely due to the caffeine and smoking habits.

I am honestly not proud of it, and it causes me more immediate stress than smoking does. So, I'm curious as to how to "kick the habit". Any ideas? What sort of things can I substitute it with?


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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 17th 2012, 02:42 AM

I've been through this too, and the answer is water. Drink water when you first wake up and limit yourself to one can of energy drink per day, and the more you drink water the less you'll feel like you need them. I carry a 3L jug of water around with me at work and have it almost gone by the end of my shift. I feel like I have more energy and feel more alert.

You don't necessarily need to cut off the energy drinks altogether, just cut back substantially on your intake.


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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 17th 2012, 07:36 AM

I too shared this same effect with Enery Drinks (Red Bull). Personally to me the easiest way to stop my addiction was to drink Coffee instead; yeah it won't taste as good; but it gave me the same effects that made me addicted to energy drinks (more energy, happy mood and increased senses). While coffee is also addicting; I have sleep issues so I'm always constantly tired and coffee (1-2 cups a day) has tons of health effects like decreased chances of heart disease!

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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 17th 2012, 03:26 PM

As with anything else you're trying to quit you simply have to tough through it. I'm assuming even energy drinks can cause withdrawal which is what you're experiencing. Either taper off with less and less gradually, or simply deal with the head aches and whatever else until they go away. Eating healthily as a whole will also make you feel better in general.


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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 17th 2012, 03:33 PM

You could also replace the energy drinks altogether with caffeine tablets or powder, and drink water and juice only. I do that sometimes, but other times I want to enjoy the taste of the energy drinks instead.


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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 19th 2012, 12:47 AM

Do you like tea?
Tea has caffeine in it too, like regular tea. Or if you like green tea, not only is it decently good for you, but it gives you a bit of energy. So tea without extra sugar might be a good alternative.


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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 19th 2012, 07:00 AM

Hey guys,

Thanks for the advice.

In response to strange_quark, I've tried coffee. Actually, I was addicted to coffee prior to energy drinks. I substituted tea for coffee, and it worked, but now everytime I drink coffee, I apparently "have an allergic reaction". I don't know how; I drink caffeine all day pretty much, and it doesn't affect me. Coffee itself, however, makes me feel queezy and nausious. So, I think that's out of the question.

As for your water suggestions, I have also tried that. I have a problem with my kidneys or my bladder, because water doesn't hold in my system for longer than five minutes. If I drink plain water over extended periods of time, I essentially urinate like a pregnant lady. Nevertheless, I will give it a shot - maybe my organs just aren't accustomed to hydration.

TheCrowing/Courtney, I do also drink tea. I drink about a litre of tea a day; two in the morning, two at night. It helps to a certain extent in keeping the urges at bay, but it hasn't been a foolproof method so far. Like water, I also urinate like a racehorse with tea, so I limit myself to that as well - I don't want to spend all day in the bathroom, haha.

Terry, I'm pretty sure my intake is as low as it gets, but it's still a problem. I can cut down to one every two days, but the day-off will be painful.

Anyway, thank you guys. I make it sound like I'm making excuses, but I really will try to adopt some of what you guys have said. Thanks again.


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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 22nd 2012, 01:21 PM

I used to have the same problem, I got addicted to a certain energy drink and I lived on the stuff and didn't eat. In the end I switched the coffee but that didn't take the urges away to drink it, eventually I moved to tea and slowly started to get back on food and I slowly recovered. Now I drink lots of tea a day but it doesn't affect me as badly as energy drinks or coffee. You will get through this! I believe in you
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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 23rd 2012, 11:18 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Composure View Post
As for your water suggestions, I have also tried that. I have a problem with my kidneys or my bladder, because water doesn't hold in my system for longer than five minutes. If I drink plain water over extended periods of time, I essentially urinate like a pregnant lady. Nevertheless, I will give it a shot - maybe my organs just aren't accustomed to hydration.
That's pretty odd that energy drinks don't have the same effect then, considering that a) water is a major ingredient in energy drinks and b) caffeine and sugar both have a diuretic effect. Perhaps the culprit is the amount of fluids you drink rather than the effects of a specific kind.


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Re: Addicted to Energy Drinks - August 24th 2012, 02:44 AM

Honestly, you probably won't be able to kick the habit overnight. It's going to take time for you to get to a point where you don't need energy drinks to get through the day. Since you said you drink the recommended maximum consumption, try cutting that down a bit. Try to go for a week drinking one energy drink less than you usually do. Continue on that pattern until you're down to drinking 0-1 a day.

Of course, you'll need to find something to substitute the energy drinks while you train your body. Water is a fantastic idea when it comes to replacing your drinks. It might make you urinate a lot right now, but it could simply have something to do with the fact that your body is not used to getting pure fluids. I used to have a similar issue when I was trying to switch from soda to water, but it's pretty much over now. With time, your body will become accustomed to the changes you are making and regulate itself to accommodate those.

Trust me, if you're willing to put in the work, you will beat this addiction. I hope this helped!


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