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Updated 26 January 2016

UltimateYou Challenge Day 4: No caffeine after 1pm

On this 30 day challenge you will receive 1 task daily to complete in order to help you eat, move, think, and sleep better.

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Welcome to Day 4 of the Free 30-Day Ultimate You Healthy Habits Challenge brought to you by Sleekgeek and Health24!

Today's task is to have no caffeine after 1pm:

Adequate quality sleep is very important to health, weight-loss and hormone cycles. That is good.

Caffeine reduces the quality of your sleep. It can take many hours to leave the body. That is not good.

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Sleep is just as important as nutrition and exercise when it comes to improving your health, performance, and body composition. Good sleep helps our bodies and minds recover, keeping us lean, happy, mentally focused, and healthy.

But chronically bad sleep packs on body fat, messes with your hormones, speeds up ageing, ramps up risks of chronic illnesses and drains our brain. Genuinely restful and restorative sleep comes from deep sleep.

Caffeine is not just your coffee. Avoid energy drinks, specific teas such as green tea and even some sweets and chocolates.

Here are some strategies you can adopt:

Taper caffeine as the day progresses. Start your day with your most highly caffeinated beverage and ease up on the caffeine as the morning goes on.

Read: Caffeine can boost weight loss 

First thing in the morning is likely when you’ll crave caffeine the most, and when it can do you the most good in terms of boosting energy and shaking off the effects of a night’s sleep. Switch over to tea or decaffeinated coffee (Coffee decaffeinated via a C02 method is healthiest) as the morning continues, to keep overall daily caffeine amounts moderate and be comfortably caffeine-free by mid-afternoon.

Avoid the “Grande”. These days, everything seems to be “super-sized”—and caffeinated drinks are no exception. Stick to something much closer to the old-fashioned 8-ounce cup, and savour it.

If you rely on stimulants like coffee to prop you up and give you a ‘burst’ of energy consider that the more you have, the less effect it will have and the more you will need. Much like any other drug.

Read: Caffeine: the impact on your memory

Use it strategically throughout the day to enjoy the maximum benefits. If you are experiencing energy dips throughout the day, consider that you might be using caffeine as a crutch and perhaps it’s time to have a look at what is causing the energy dips rather than masking it with caffeine.

Before I kill someone in a caffeine withdrawal rage, why are we doing this again?

The following is an abbreviated list of some of the more damaging effects of sleep deprivation:

- Impaired immune system.

- Overweight and obesity.

- Cognitive decline.

- Poor mood and mental health.

- Systemic inflammation.

- Increased risk of death.

- Reduction of lifespan.

We could go on and on. There’s really no disease or medical condition that sleep deprivation doesn’t either contribute to directly or make worse.

So just for today, leave the caffeine from 1pm. You’ll sleep better tonight - promise.

JOIN UP

You can sign up for FREE here: Ultimate You 

In case you missed these:

Day 1: Eat slowly and mindfully

Day 2: Move 6,000 steps

Day 3: List 5 things that you are grateful for

DONE!

See you tomorrow for your next healthy habit.

 
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