Can Pregnant Women Have Caffeine?

A controversial subject that has raised concerns for many years is the consumption of caffeine during pregnancy. Studies on this issue have led to some convincing findings that suggest both mothers and their babies can suffer negative affects with the consumption of caffeine.

Caffeine is both a diuretic and stimulant. This means it can cause dehydration due to increased urination, and it can also increase the heart rate and blood pressure. None of these problems are healthy during pregnancy.

In a person that is not pregnant, it only takes about 6 hours for caffeine to wear off. However, it can take twice as long to metabolize in pregnant women.

While less than 300 mg of caffeine each day seems to not cause increased health concerns, consuming more than this can cause an increased risk of miscarriage. A link has also been found between defects at birth and pre-term labor among pregnant women that have consumed more than 300 mg of caffeine on a regular basis.

A low to moderate consumption of caffeine will not have any negative effects on the health of most mothers or their babies. However, issues with sensitivity to caffeine can vary a great deal from one pregnant mother to the next. Because of this, it is suggested that these mothers take steps to avoid caffeine during pregnancy.

Not only should caffeinated coffee, tea, and soft drinks be avoided, but there are some foods containing caffeine as well that should also be avoided. A few of these include certain yogurts, ice creams that are coffee flavored, and chocolate. There are many women that have tried the decaffeinated versions of coffee, tea, and soft drinks that claim they taste just as good as their caffeinated counterparts.

Further studies have also shown there to be a problem with fertility and the consumption of caffeine. When caffeine is consumed in amounts that are greater than 300 mg a day, conception has been known to be delayed. Women that consumed very high amounts of caffeine even had problems with conception being delayed for as long as a whole year.

This is precisely why there are many women that choose to take much better care of their body before trying to conceive. Not only does this mean completely eliminating caffeine consumption for a period of time before trying to conceive, but it also means regular exercise and eating healthy.

Studies have also shown that problems can occur in women that wait until the final months of pregnancy before consuming caffeine. The baby's breathing rate can increase, they can have tremors, and the fetal heart rate can increase as the mother's consumption of caffeine can be absorbed by the baby.

Breastfeeding is also a time that women should avoid caffeine, as it will pass right through the breast milk and in to the baby.

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