Find out if you can drink coffee during pregnancy or not. Check out the benefits and side effects of caffeine or its products like chocolate in the first, second and third trimester. Also, find out if decaf is safe when expecting.
Today we will discuss an important issue that worries many women during pregnancy. We did not find a single resource on the Internet, adequately explaining this problem. So, we have taken it upon ourselves to clear this confusion. Here we have rich and detailed information based on scientific facts.
The problem or query we are tackling here is “Can you drink coffee during pregnancy?” You will be interested in this study if you are constantly thinking about the health of your unborn child.
Basic Query about Coffee During Pregnancy
So, the first question that most likely interests you. I am pregnant, should I exclude coffee and other sources of caffeine from the diet?
Once you learned about pregnancy, it would be nice to limit the use of coffee. For decades, scientific discussions have been conducted and conflicting studies have been conducted. However, it is still not known exactly how much caffeine is safe during pregnancy.
The American Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ASAG) advise pregnant women to limit the use of caffeine to 200 milligrams a day. This equates to about 300t of a cup of coffee.
Below we also have a list of products and beverages indicating the content of caffeine in them. This is helpful especially if you are maintaining a proper diet plan and counting calories.
Problems With Coffee During Pregnancy
When you drink coffee, caffeine penetrates the placenta into the amniotic fluid and into your child’s bloodstream. The placenta does not filter caffeine.
In this case, your body immediately metabolizes and starts to withdraw caffeine. However, the child’s body is not yet developed enough to withdraw caffeine, it takes much more time. That is, your child is exposed to caffeine for a longer time than you are.
Studies on this topic are still ongoing. ASAG recently concluded that moderate consumption of coffee, up to 200 milligrams of caffeine a day, is not the main cause of miscarriages and premature births.
Although one large study has shown that women who consume more than 300 mg of caffeine a day are more prone to having children who are too small for their gestational age. In other words, the child is underdeveloped at birth.
One thing is for certain, you will feel better if you do not abuse caffeine. Still, it is a strong stimulant, it increases the heart rate and blood pressure.
In addition, coffee can make you nervous and cause insomnia. Caffeine also often leads to heartburn, stimulating the production of stomach acid. These unpleasant phenomena can be more noticeable during the development of your pregnancy.
The ability of your body to withdraw caffeine slows down over time and in the second trimester, the body needs twice as much time to withdraw it. This is in comparison with the non-pregnant state, and in the third trimester, it is three times more.
This suggests that more caffeine begins to pass through the placenta to a child who cannot effectively withdraw it. This also applies to newborns, their body is not able to effectively withdraw caffeine. So, again we advise you to limit caffeine for the first few months of breastfeeding as well.
There is another reason why coffee and tea should be restricted. These drinks contain compounds that interfere with the effective absorption of iron from food.
This is important, because many pregnant women have the iron deficiency, and accordingly low hemoglobin. If you still drink coffee and tea then you should do it between meals.
Products Containing Caffeine
Coffee, of course, comes first. The amount of caffeine in a cup of coffee varies very widely. It depends on the type of coffee beans, how they are roasted, how they make coffee. And, of course, on the size of coffee mugs.
It is interesting that espresso contains less caffeine than an ordinary large portion of coffee.
This is due to the fact that it is served in small cups, although it is very strong coffee. In order to understand how much caffeine you consume, you need to know about other sources of caffeine. This includes tea, soft drinks, energy, chocolate and even coffee ice cream.
Caffeine is also found in many medications sold in our country without a prescription. Therefore, read the labels carefully before taking any medications. It is also advisable that one should consult a specialist before taking any medication during pregnancy.
The content of caffeine in certain foods and beverages are as follows.
- Various Types of Coffee
Let’s start with various types of coffee and how much caffeine each of them contain respectively.
- Coffee, cooked usually 250 grams 95-200 mg of caffeine.
- Coffee from Starbucks 350 grams 240 mg.
- Coffee from Dunkin ‘Donuts 450 grams 211 mg.
- Coffee latte, cappuccino, Starbucks 450 grams 150 mg.
- Coffee latte, cappuccino, Starbucks 350 grams 75 mg.
- Espresso, Starbucks 30 grams 75 mg.
- Espresso, the usual 30 grams of 64 mg.
- Instant coffee 1 teaspoon of 31 mg.
- Decaffeinated coffee 250 grams 2 mg.
- Caffeine in Types of Tea
Yes, caffeine can also be found in various types of tea.
Let’s see the amount of it in these varied kinds of tea.
- Black tea 250 grams 47 mg.
- Green tea 250 grams 25 mg.
- Black decaffeinated tea 250 grams 2 mg.
- Instant tea, unsweetened 1 teaspoon 26 mg.
- Lipton, ice tea 350 grams 2 mg.
- Caffeine in Cold Drinks
Of course, the cold drinks contain caffeine in them and are bad to be consumed during pregnancy anyway.
Still, let’s check out the quantity of it in cold drinks.
- Coca-Cola 350 grams 35 mg.
- Diet Coke 350 grams 47 mg.
- Pepsi 350 grams 38 mg.
- Diet Pepsi 350 grams 36 mg.
- Mountain Dew 350 grams 54 mg.
- 7-up 350 grams 0 mg.
- Sprite 350 grams 0 mg.
- Energetic drinks like Red bull 250 g 77 mg.
- Different Desserts Containing Caffeine
We all know that our desert has some amount of caffeine in them. However, they taste so good that we are unable to resist them. So, to better manage the diet let’s find out the amount of caffeine in them.
- Dark chocolate (70-85% cocoa) 30 grams 23 mg.
- Milk chocolate 45 grams 9 mg.
- Coffee ice cream 250 grams 2 mg.
- Hot Cocoa 250 grams 8-12 mg.
- Chocolate chips 120 grams 53 mg.
Now, that we know the products that contain caffeine it would be easy to make a diet plan that helps expecting mothers. This is a need because let’s face it, it will be difficult to just stop coffee, tea, deserts in its entirety and all at once. However, we can do it in a proper and the safest way.
Advise to Stop Drinking Coffee
Many people lose their craving for coffee during pregnancy particularly in the first trimester, they would literally puke.
If thoughts of a cup of a morning drink do not leave you, try to switch to decaffeinated coffee. Although, it also contains caffeine, but in much smaller quantities as we can see from the table.
To begin with, you can mix your regular coffee with decaffeinated coffee, gradually increasing the amount of the second. Or add more milk and less coffee.
At home, try using a smaller amount of ground coffee and less tea in the cup. It is proved that brewing tea bag for a minute instead of five reduces the caffeine content in whole two times.
You can also try replacing coffee with chicory, this drink is very similar to taste, and it does not contain caffeine.
In occasion of herbal teas, although mostly they do not contain caffeine but many herbs may not be safe during pregnancy. Therefore, read the composition and do not forget to consult your doctor first.
Remember that caffeine can be in unexpected places. For example, stretch marks lotion containing cocoa butter can adversely affect a child. A study conducted in 2006 showed that mothers who stopped using this lotion during pregnancy reduced the risk of arrhythmias in children with structural cardiac disorders.
Therefore, we advise you to carefully read the composition of creams and lotions during pregnancy, as well as the composition of food. Lastly, do nothing without consulting your doctor first.