We don’t know a lot about the effects of caffeine during pregnancy on you and your baby. So it’s best to limit the amount you get each day.
If you’re pregnant, limit caffeine to 200 milligrams each day. This is about the amount in 1½ 8-ounce cups of coffee or one 12-ounce cup of coffee.
If you’re breastfeeding, limit caffeine to no more than two cups of coffee a day.
Caffeine is a drug found in things like coffee, tea, soda, chocolate and some energy drinks and medicines. It’s a stimulant, which means it can keep you awake.
How does caffeine affect you and your baby during pregnancy?
Caffeine slightly increases your blood pressure and heart rate and the amount of urine your body makes. Caffeine may cause you to feel jittery, have indigestion or have trouble sleeping. During pregnancy, you may be especially sensitive to caffeine because it may take you longer to clear it from your body than if you weren’t pregnant. It may also make you feel nauseous or lightheaded.
When you have caffeine during pregnancy, it passes through the placenta to your baby. The placenta grows in your uterus (womb) and supplies the baby with food and oxygen through the umbilical cord.
You may have heard that too much caffeine can cause miscarriage (when a baby dies in the womb before 20 weeks of pregnancy), preterm birth (birth that happens before 37 weeks of pregnancy is completed) or low birth weight (when your baby is born weighing less than 5 pounds, 8 ounces). Some studies say this is true, and others don’t.
Until we know more about how caffeine can affect pregnancy, it’s best to limit the amount you get to 200 milligrams each day. This is about the amount in 1½ 8-ounce cups of coffee or one 12-ounce cup of coffee. Be sure to check the size of your cup to know how much caffeine you’re getting.
What foods and drinks contain caffeine?
Caffeine is found in:
Coffee and coffee-flavored products, like yogurt and ice cream
Some soft drinks
Chocolate and chocolate products, like chocolate syrup and hot cocoa
The amount of caffeine in foods and drinks varies a lot. For coffee and tea, the amount of caffeine depends on:
How it’s prepared
The type of beans or leaves used
The way it’s served (for example, as espresso or latte)
The size of the cup. Not all coffee cups are the same size, even though you think of them as a cup. Check to see how many ounces your cup has, especially if you’re buying a cup of coffee or tea. If you’re making coffee or tea at home, measure to check the size of the cup.
Some energy drinks contain large amounts of caffeine. For example, a 24-ounce energy drink may have up to 500 milligrams of caffeine. Energy drinks may have a lot of sugar, too, and they may contain ingredients that may be harmful to your baby during pregnancy. Because we don’t know a lot about all the ingredients in energy drinks, it’s best not to have them when you’re pregnant.
The amount of caffeine you get from food and drinks throughout the day adds up. So if you have a cup of coffee in the morning, you may want to limit or give up having other food and drinks during the day that have caffeine.
The list below shows the amount of caffeine in common food and drinks. The caffeine amounts are averages, so they may change depending on the brand or how the food or drink is made. Check the package label on food and drinks to know how much caffeine they contain.
What medicines contain caffeine?
Some medicines used for pain relief, migraine headaches, colds and to help keep you awake contain caffeine. The Food and Drug Administration (also called FDA) requires that labels on medicine list the amount of caffeine in the medicine.
If you’re pregnant, talk to your health care provider before taking any medicine that contains caffeine. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicine. A prescription is an order for medicine given by a health care provider. You can buy over-the-counter medicine, like pain relievers and cold medicine, without a prescription.
Some herbal products contain caffeine. These include guarana, yerba mate, kola nut and green tea extract. Herbal products are made from herbs, which are plants that are used in cooking and for medicine. The FDA does not require that herbal products have a label saying how much caffeine they contain. If you’re pregnant, don’t use herbal products because we don’t know how much caffeine they contain.
Is caffeine safe during breastfeeding?
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says it’s safe for breastfeeding moms to have caffeine. A small amount of caffeine does get into breast milk, so limit caffeine if you’re breastfeeding. Breastfed babies of women who drink more than 2 to 3 cups of coffee a day may become fussy or have trouble sleeping. You may want to drink less caffeine if your baby was born preterm or newborn because she may digest caffeine more slowly.
Last reviewed: April 2020
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Moderate daily caffeine intake during pregnancy may lead to smaller birth size
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Thursday, March 25, 2021
Pregnant women who consumed the caffeine equivalent of as little as half a cup of coffee a day on average had slightly smaller babies than pregnant women who did not consume caffeinated beverages, according to a study by researchers at the National Institutes of Health. The researchers found corresponding reductions in size and lean body mass for infants whose mothers consumed below the 200 milligrams of caffeine per day — about two cups of coffee — believed to increase risks to the fetus. Smaller birth size can place infants at higher risk of obesity, heart disease and diabetes later in life.
The researchers were led by Katherine L. Grantz, M.D., M.S., of the Division of Intramural Population Health Research at NIH’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. The study appears in JAMA Network Open.
“Until we learn more, our results suggest it might be prudent to limit or forego caffeine-containing beverages during pregnancy,” Dr. Grantz said. “It’s also a good idea for women to consult their physicians about caffeine consumption during pregnancy.”
Previous studies have linked high caffeine consumption (more than 200 milligrams of caffeine per day) during pregnancy to infants being small for their gestational age (stage of pregnancy) or at risk for intrauterine growth restriction—being in the lowest 10th percentile for infants of the same gestational age. However, studies on moderate daily caffeine consumption (200 milligrams or less) during pregnancy have produced mixed results. Some have found similar elevated risks for low birth weight and other poor birth outcomes, while others have found no such links. The current study authors noted that many of the earlier studies did not account for other factors that could influence infant birth size, such as variation in caffeine content of different beverages and maternal smoking during pregnancy.
For their study, the authors analyzed data on more than 2,000 racially and ethnically diverse women at 12 clinical sites who were enrolled from 8 to 13 weeks of pregnancy. The women were non-smokers and did not have any health problems before pregnancy. From weeks 10 to 13 of pregnancy, the women provided a blood sample that was later analyzed for caffeine and paraxanthine, a compound produced when caffeine is broken down in the body. The women also reported their daily consumption of caffeinated beverages (coffee, tea, soda and energy drinks) for the past week—once when they enrolled and periodically throughout their pregnancies.
Compared to infants born to women with no or minimal blood levels of caffeine, infants born to women who had the highest blood levels of caffeine at enrollment were an average of 84 grams lighter at birth (about 3 ounces), were .44 centimeters shorter (about .17 inches), and had head circumferences .28 centimeters smaller (about .11 inches).
Based on the women’s own estimates of the beverages they drank, women who consumed about 50 milligrams of caffeine a day (equivalent to a half cup of coffee) had infants 66 grams (about 2.3 ounces) lighter than infants born to non-caffeine consumers. Similarly, infants born to the caffeine consumers also had thigh circumferences .32 centimeters smaller (about .13 inches).
The researchers noted that caffeine is believed to cause blood vessels in the uterus and placenta to constrict, which could reduce the blood supply to the fetus and inhibit growth. Similarly, researchers believe caffeine could potentially disrupt fetal stress hormones, putting infants at risk for rapid weight gain after birth and for later life obesity, heart disease and diabetes.
The authors concluded that their findings suggest that even moderate caffeine consumption may be associated with decreased growth of the fetus.
About the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD): NICHD leads research and training to understand human development, improve reproductive health, enhance the lives of children and adolescents, and optimize abilities for all. For more information, visit https://www.nichd.nih.gov.
About the National Institutes of Health (NIH):
NIH, the nation's medical research agency, includes 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. NIH is the primary federal agency conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and is investigating the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih. gov.
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Gleason, JL et al. Maternal caffeine consumption and metabolism and neonatal anthropometry in the NICHD Fetal Growth Studies. JAMA Network Open. 2021. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.3238
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Moderate amounts of caffeine are not associated with maternal health risks
In a prospective study of 2529 pregnant women, consumption of caffeinated beverages was associated with a reduced risk of gestational diabetes, writes eurekalert.org.
Good news for pregnant coffee drinkers: Small amounts of caffeine during pregnancy may help reduce the risk of gestational diabetes, according to researchers at the University of Pennsylvania's Perelman School of Medicine and the National Institutes of Health. The results were published on Monday in the JAMA Network Open.
"While we were unable to study the association of consumption above the recommended limit, we now know that low to moderate levels of caffeine are not associated with an increased risk of gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, or hypertension in pregnant women," says lead author Stephanie Hinkle, Associate Professor department of epidemiology in Pennsylvania.
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends that pregnant women limit their caffeine intake to less than 200 mg (about two six-ounce cups) per day. The recommendations are based on studies that suggest a potential association with pregnancy loss and fetal growth at higher levels of caffeine. However, data on the association between caffeine use and maternal health remain limited.
To better understand this association, the researchers examined prospective data from 2529 pregnant participants who were enrolled in the National Institute for Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) fetal growth cohort at 12 US clinical centers between 2009 and 2013.
At enrollment and at each subsequent office visit, women reported their weekly consumption of caffeinated coffee, caffeinated tea, sodas, and energy drinks. The concentration of caffeine was also measured in the plasma of participants at 10-13 weeks of gestation. The researchers then correlated caffeine intake with primary outcomes: clinical diagnosis of gestational diabetes, gestational hypertension, and preeclampsia.
The research team found that consumption of caffeinated beverages between 10 and 13 weeks was not associated with risk of gestational diabetes. In the second trimester, up to 100 mg of caffeine per day was associated with a 47 percent reduction in the risk of diabetes. There were no statistically significant differences in blood pressure, preeclampsia, or hypertension between those who drank and did not drink caffeine during pregnancy.
The researchers note that the results are consistent with studies that have shown that caffeine was associated with improved energy balance and reduced body fat. They also say they can't rule out that these results are related to other coffee and tea constituents, such as phytochemicals, that may influence inflammation and insulin resistance, leading to a reduced risk of gestational diabetes.
However, past studies by the same group have shown that caffeine intake during pregnancy, even in amounts less than the recommended 200 mg per day, was associated with lower neonatal anthropometric scores, according to Hinkle.
“Women who don't drink should not start caffeinated beverages to reduce their risk of gestational diabetes,” she said. "But our results may offer some reassurance to women who already consume low to moderate amounts of caffeine that such consumption is not likely to increase maternal health risks."
Correspondent Anna Yudina
harm to coffee benefits of coffee coffee and pregnancy gestational diabetes mellitus
Source: www.eurekalert. org
Information provided by the Information Agency "Scientific Russia". Mass media registration certificate: IA No. ФС77-62580, issued Federal Service for Supervision of Communications, Information Technology and Mass Communications on July 31, 2015.
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How Much Coffee Can You Really Drink While Pregnant?
A new study indicates that caffeine is dangerous for pregnant women, even at low doses. But experts are sure that the complete elimination of caffeine from the diet is not required.
doctor-therapist Ukrainian Andrey
Moderate consumption of coffee and other caffeinated foods is now considered safe during pregnancy. A major new study, published in the prestigious journal BMJ Evidence Based Medicine , states the opposite: there is no safe dose of coffee for pregnant women. This statement caused a resonance in scientific circles and in the media. We understand whether it is really necessary to completely refuse coffee during pregnancy.
What are the current caffeine intake guidelines for pregnant women?
The first caffeine restriction recommendations for pregnant women appeared in the US in 1980 following reports of teratogenic effects of the substance in rodents. Since then, fears about caffeine have subsided. Its use is no longer associated with the risk of severe anomalies. But in large quantities, it can lead to low birth weight in newborns, and in extreme cases, to miscarriage.
The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommends that pregnant women consume up to 200 milligrams of caffeine per day without fear of harm to their fetus or their own health. A similar figure is indicated by the UK National Health System (NHS) and the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
How do we know how much caffeine we get?
The following approximate caffeine content data can be used to control the amount of caffeine in products.
1 cup instant coffee - 100 mg caffeine;
1 cup of coffee from a coffee maker - 140 mg;
1 cup tea - 75 mg;
1 can of cola - 40 mg;
1 can (250 ml) energy drink - up to 80 mg;
1 dark chocolate bar (50 g) - up to 25 mg;
1 milk chocolate bar - up to 10 mg.
Thus, the limit of caffeine consumption can be reached by drinking, for example, 2 cups of tea and one can of cola.
No more pouring: what's wrong with coffee
It is not advisable to drink coffee in the morning and not safe in the evening. We tell you why coffee does not really give energy, and how to deal with caffeine “side effects”.
What the New Study Finds
Professor Jack E. James of Reykjavik University reviewed 48 studies on the effects of various forms of caffeine in pregnancy. The reviewer found that most studies show an association of caffeine use during pregnancy with the risk of prematurity (low birth weight, low gestational age), acute childhood leukemia, and childhood obesity. Caffeine has not been associated with an increased chance of preterm birth.
Many of the studies James reviewed showed that there was no safe level of coffee consumption for pregnant women.
Observational studies were included in the review. They usually do not allow to judge a causal relationship: that is, it is not known whether coffee is the cause of the listed problems. However, the author points out that some studies have shown a dose-dependent effect: the more caffeine, the higher the risk of disorders. This testifies in favor of the fact that substance is really dangerous in small quantities .
If this scientific work is heeded by professional medical associations, there may be a recommendation to eliminate caffeine from the diet of pregnant women.
What the experts say
Many experts were skeptical about the quality of the evidence for caffeine harm. Specialists, whose opinion is given in the media, believe that the new study cannot lead to a change in the current recommendations.
King's College London Professor Andrew Shennan noted that Jack James has done a good review of the research, but there is room for questions. "The evidence for harm may be partly related to other factors that often accompany caffeine use, such as smoking," he said.
Shennan noted that in observational studies, information about the amount of caffeine consumed is obtained from the words of pregnant women themselves, and the figures may be underestimated. Therefore, the data of such scientific works can be distorted.
Dr. Daghni Rajasingham, Speaker of the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology, indicated that the current recommendations for caffeine intake are based on high-quality evidence. In her opinion, the data presented in the new study is less convincing.
Adam Jacobs, director of the biotech company Premier Research, noted that the author of the new study had previously written two books about the dangers of coffee, that is, it is necessary to take into account his tendentious attitude to the issue.