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Coffee allowed? If not why not...

I am just starting ... (Atkins, I think, as I previously tried it with good results) but suddenly saw something about trying to eliminate coffee or strong teas... why? Also, having just started I bought a grand amount of salami and have been wolfing that down ... afraid I will get cravings otherwise...

Re: Coffee allowed? If not why not...


There are lots of opposing views on whether the caffeine in coffee (and in tea, chocolate, colas and some other soft drinks, some painkillers and cough/cold remedies too for that matter) will affect weight loss. Dr. Atkins recommends avoiding caffeine as it may trigger insulin. One thing is for sure - you know you're having too much caffeine if you get palpitations/nervousness/jitters with it. And if you 'need' your caffeine to get you going (and very probably, if you get headaches or other withdrawal symptoms when you stop) that indicates you're addicted to it. So although no-one is sure whether caffeine will affect your weight loss on a low carb (or any other diet), it's not that good an idea to get too much of it for other reasons.

Salami is not too good for you because it usually contains a lot of cancer-causing chemicals called nitrites (as may any processed meat and fish). Processsed meats (and fish) may also contain carbs due to the sugar they are cured with, or sugar may be added, and/or they may contain fillers such as 'rusk' or other forms of starch which all contain carbs.

Having said that, you may (as I do) take the view that if a certain amount of caffeine and salami helps you get over the first period when you are adjusting to your new way of eating, then that is better than cutting them out entirely and causing you to succumb to cravings and give up your low carb diet altogether.

I switched to decaffeinated coffee and herbal caffeine-free teas some years ago and don't miss the ordinary coffee and tea at all now. I'm lessening the impact of the decaffeinated coffee (which has issues of its own) now by having just half a teaspoon of decaff together with half a teaspoon of a chicory-based coffee substitute. I think the main thing is to be open to trying new (and hopefully less damaging) foods and drinks and not get stuck in a rut with what we've always eaten/drunk.

Re: Coffee allowed? If not why not...

Many thanks for your helpful input. I never have palpitations etc., but have no problem with decaf either, so will slowly start weaning myself of the strong stuff. Also the Salami - yup, forgot about nitrites. Well, I have been amazingly GOOD about NO obvious carbs (bread, flour, potatoes etc) but found the delicious flaxmeal foccacia bread online, which felt as if it "saved my sanity with regard to cravings..."· First time on this diet with NO constipation problems - must be this bread and THAT is a lifesaver for me! Carbs in it ... dont know and I have yet to see the scales move much, but also dove into jalapeno cheese as ago-to". Anyhow, will gradua.lly settle down and DO it. Thanks again. I will follow this site...