Saturday, 5 July 2014
I now have an enhanced respect for the old Java, the cappucino, the..well, you know the bewildering variety of ways you can slurp up caffeiene. (I write not of useless fattening caffeinated fizzy drinks....)
I have also added to my understanding of caffeine levels in different teas. Did you know that, contrary to propaganda, white tea, lovely though it is, has one of the highest concentrations of caffeine of any tea? And that decaffeinated tea and coffee still retain small quantities of caffeine? You did? OK, on we go.
I've been trying to find out what might be causing a reactive skin rash I've been proudly nourishing for at least 18 months, so I am trying the procedure of leaving out of my diet one at a time the most common suspects for triggering histamine reactions in the skin.
You may imagine my relief when after an alcohol-free 19 days I discovered that keeping clear of the Merlot the G&T and the foaming pint of Adnams made absolutely no difference. I was still "scratchin' like a hound" (Coasters, 1959, "Poison Ivy.")
So next I tried caffeine. I stopped drinking teas black green or white, and coffee. Stopped abruptly. Big mistake. Headaches, generally feeling well below par (and par isn't what it used to be. Do you find that? You're obviously over 60...) grumpy (-er), mood (-ier) swings.
Stuck it for two days then re-caffeinated gently, with Darjeeling tea. Fizz pop went the day, back up to par. That's just two cups of Darj in a day, no more.
And that was and is my usual daily dose, apart from an espresso in the morning. Clearly, even my moderate caffeine intake makes a big difference to my metabolism, and I have an addiction. I'm so proud to have discovered that, since I've always been too cowardly to contemplate getting addicted to anything else much. Apart obviously from Cotes du Rhone. And music. And being in the countryside. And....h'mmm.
There is a point to all this. Which is: what effects are caffeine levels likely to have on meditation sessions? Should one espresso up in order not to nod off, or shun the stuff because it disturbs equilibrium?
I shall address these crucial issues in my next post. Please try to contain your impatience.