Write-up moved from node - "Coming off caffeine"

Why come off caffeine? Two reasons. Firstly - caffeine is an addictive drug. And addictive drugs are bad, y'know? Do you really want your mind enslaved to a chemical? To know that all that separates you from shaking mindless incapacity is your morning fix?

Secondly, caffeine is an addictive drug. And you get tolerant. One study had people becoming pretty much immune to the effects of 400mg a day (that's about 4 cups of coffee) within a week. So if you want your morning coffee to actually have an effect, or if you want to be able to use the drug as a fall-back stimulant for some future suddenly looming deadline, you'll want to free yourself of it temporarily.

Well, easier said than done. There are withdrawal symptoms. In particular, there are the headaches, there's the drowsiness, there's the muffled quality to all your senses, and there's the substantial thickening of that aura of crapness that crowds your mind. Not nice. Effects peak after a couple of days without the drug, and can last for well over a week. So here's some advice - don't try cold turkey. Come off it fast, but not completely immediately. You only need a tiny proportion of your normal dose to keep those nastinesses at bay. If you normally have 300mg (that's about three cups of coffee, or six of tea) you'll only need 25mg to keep you feeling OKish. So start with that - that's a quarter of a cup of coffee a day - and come down gently to nothing within a few days. Yes, this does mean you'll soon be picking grains of coffee out practically individually ("one pinch or two?") and pouring teaspoonfuls of water into your cup - but at least such measures remind you that this is a drug you're dealing with, hence redoubling your resolve to get off it.

Well, good luck!

Source for factual information - New Scientist