How, if at all, do caffeine, alcohol and cigarettes influence our sleep?    

Here you will find out how, if at all, do caffeine, alcohol and cigarettes influence our sleep.

Written by Tom Holm - Orbitz International

Let's start by saying that less alcohol and caffeine definitely help you sleep better, at least for most people, because it's hard to say that it is the same for everyone.

Most people? What does that mean in percent? Well, what do you think?

If we were to do a survey, most people would estimate a different percentage than others. Because nobody really knows for sure. But let's agree on 80% of the people.

If these 80% would consume "less" alcohol and caffeine, they would also sleep better. Wouldn't they?

However, reducing the alcohol and caffeine content is not that easy, because they are addictive in nature.

If on the other hand consumed and enjoyed in moderation, then most certainly not.

Is that bad, you ask? Because these are legal for adults.

Again, if we ask 100 people how much caffeine or alcohol is harmful to your health, you will get a lot of different answers.

I don't want to call for scientific studies at this point, because I'm only trying to explain that for people who suffer from sleep disorders, it would simply be better to consume less caffeine and alcohol in order to sleep better.

Which amount is too much? Well, anything above 2-3 cups per day could already be too much for those who suffer from insomnia.

If for example you drink about 10 cups of coffee or tea per day, and at this point we do not include DECAF, because coffee/tea without caffeine should not be included here, then reduce it to 7-8 cups a day. If this is not possible then just 1 cup less per day. Then after one or two weeks, 2 cups less. In the third and fourth week, you should then be down to 5 cups a day. Of course, it may take a little longer for some people and that is OK.

All caffeinated drinks, such as cola, are also included.

Since this is a very personal topic, we can of course create an individual plan for you. You can request this on my website.

If you have insomnia and nothing has really helped so far, then it would be worth a try to start with less caffeine or alcohol to see for yourself if it is one of the reasons why you have trouble falling asleep or sleeping through the night.

Every year there are new/old surveys that prove that coffee is good for our health. Then the next study, which of course scientifically proven, says that coffee is bad for us. What now? Good, bad or what's their point?

Very simple. Everything a "healthy person" does, eats or consumes, and now comes a very decisive factor, " In moderation" can't be bad for us. We are mainly talking about things like coffee, tea or different drinks or food, not about hard drugs and many other excesses, etc.

In the morning one or two cups of fresh coffee or cappuccino or a latte macchiato at breakfast is fine. Pure pleasure for our taste buds and ourselves, because we should enjoy drinking coffee or tea and relax, take our time and don't rush it and just swallow 1, 2 or 3 cups of coffee!

If you then "enjoy" one or two espressos in the afternoon while chatting with friends or colleagues then everything is fine.

Have you ever been to Italy?  If so, you've probably watched the Italians enjoying their espresso, right? Sure, they do not always have time, but most of the time.

Italy is also home to the oldest people in Europe. Why?  

Simple. It's not only the fact that in Italy   the weather in almost all of Italy is really great, but also what they eat, and especially the time they take while eating. No one is rushed.

On my last visit to southern Italy with my wife, all the stores were closed from noon to 4pm! Why, to enjoy their lunch and not to go to a fast-food restaurant somewhere to just eat something quickly, which might not even be fresh or healthy.

Much less stress and a way of life that almost only Italians have. You can really see the joy of life in Italy. 

La Dolce Vita. The sweet life. And that's why many people want to spend their retirement in Italy. Not everyone wants to or is able to, but a lot of people have already done it.

And if its not in Italy, then somewhere warm, where the people are friendly and the food is great.

Most people work to live, and not live to work. I think that the Italians, at least most of them, are actually practicing this on a daily basis. 

So it is very important HOW you enjoy your coffee or tea, and of course with whom, but above all, in moderation.

If you know the statement: Less is more, and you have insomnia than just try it.

Now to cigarettes, my favorite topic. 

Since I myself started smoking when I was about 20 years old, but stopped smoking a few years ago, I understand smokers as well as non-smokers.

Actually, I could stop at this point, because ALL smokers know that it is harmful to health and not beneficial to health.


We all have to die of something, why not of cigarettes, or that will follow, many might think who are still smoking.

I myself have grown up where you could smoke almost everywhere in the 70s. In the offices, in restaurants, even on planes people smoked. Can you remember that too?

However, on most flights I went to the non-smokers section, because the smoke inside the airplane was simply too much even for me as a smoker. 

So smoking endangers your health? At least that's what it says on every pack of cigarettes. But  it is not something that makes fewer people smoke, right?

In the early seventies a pack cost between 30 cents to 1,50$, depending on what state you lived in the USA, since taxes did vary quite a bit. Even if the prices increased over the years it does not necessarily mean that fewer people are smoking today.

Only briefly some facts to the tobacco tax which was increased in the last 10 years several times.

Nowadays Cigarette prices per state vary between $5.25 and $12.85 per pack, of which about 40% is the tobacco tax, which compared to the 82% in the UK seems pretty low.

 My best friend calls it the fairy tale tax. 🙂 Don't ask me why…

What surprises me now is actually only one thing. Why don't smokers at least try to smoke a little less?

Easier said than done. Especially people who suffer from sleep disorders should try to smoke less, especially 1-2 hours before going to bed, no more cigarettes.

Nicotine, just like insulin or caffeine, is a drug that can lead to addiction.

All drugs that end with -in- have these properties. Of course also heroin or cocaine and all painkillers that contain caffeine.

If the English were to take away their tea or the Italians or Germans their coffee, we would have a lot of, to put it politely, not nice people around us. Many would also become aggressive, others would have even worse reactions to the withdrawal of tea or coffee.

So if you have smoking and sleeping disorders of any kind, I would suggest that in the near future, especially in the evening, you should smoke less.

If the nicotine level is slowly reduced, anyone can do it. Where there is a will, there is always a way.

To go cold turkey is something that only a few successfully do, especially in the long run.

Try the following: If you smoke about 1 pack per day, which are 19 cigarettes, just try to smoke only 17-18 cigarettes per day, which is only 1-2 cigarettes less. But this for the next 1-4 weeks. The Nicotine level must be lowered gradually in your body and very slowly.

After 3-4 weeks, reduce it again by 1-2 cigarettes per day. Do this until you are at 5-7 per day. This is an amount that the body can process and tolerate much better. The best thing of course, would be to stop smoking completely.

Personally, it took me almost 10 years to do this and I haven't smoked a single cigarette for several years. So please do take your time, whatever time you need, but please bear in mind that If you do have sleep disorders, to start today and not wait any longer. I did not have any sleeping issues.

The most important thing is NOT to smoke a cigarette before going to bed, at least 1-2 hours.

Besides, the problems increase with age, so the older you get, the more these substances can contribute to sleep disorders than if you are a young boy or girl.

My closing words:

Even if you have in the past drunk coffee, tea or cola in the late afternoon or evening without any problems, these substances can lead to sleep disorders with increasing age.

Consuming more than 300 mg of caffeine per day (three cups of coffee, tea or cola or other caffeinated painkillers) is likely to interfere with sleep and may lead to caffeine addiction.

We can help you to find the root causes for your sleeping issues!

Please take the Quiz and find out what YOUR root causes are and how to get rid of them.

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 Just in case you are wondering...

what would happen if you do NOT fill out this questionnaire.

You just might never find your solution to a night of healthier & better sleep.
You will most likely continue having trouble falling asleep.
You might continue waking up in the middle of the night.
You might not feel rested in the morning.
Your overall health might eventually start to suffer.
Your insomnia might also cause harm to loved ones.

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