A few weeks ago I became very sick, unable to attend university or work for a few weeks. This, somehow, may be the best thing to have happened to my health in recent time, and has completely shifted my mindset when it comes to looking after my physical and mental health. Here’s why.

For the first week I was sick, I could barely stomach any sort of food, with basic fruit all I could eat, and the thought of coffee (or even the smell of it) was disgusting. As the illness progressed, I noticed the worst headaches of my life beginning to emerge. At first I thought it was the illness, but with hindsight I think it was the lack of caffeine I was no longer consuming. I would normally have three or four coffees per day, and simply shutting off this caffeine supply appeared to have severe consequences on my physical health (never in my life have I needed a prescription for a headache). I may be wrong; perhaps the headaches were caused by the illness. But I can’t deny I’ve never felt better after ceasing my coffee consumption.

Now that I’m healthy again, I’ve returned to the gym at least three times per week to get stronger, I’m eating better and more balanced portions and I’ve noticed that in the morning I don’t feel completely fatigued to get out of bed. In fact, I wake up feeling like I have as much energy as I had when I went to bed. Now I’m able to study my Japanese and International Relations topics with a much sharper focus and find I’m no longer easily distracted. The anxiety that would normally set in when thinking about, for example, a test, has completely disappeared.

This may all be just a coincidence. Maybe coffee has nothing to do with this change. I can’t deny though, that life just feels better without it.

I do miss the taste though.

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