Health & Exercise

Caffeine and pregnancy questions....

Hello! I am pregnant with my FIRST!! .. and battling the coffee war of whether its worth it or not to continue drinking it. My family is European and coffee lovers/obsessors...Ive drank coffee since I was a kid myself, PLUS work for Starbucks, so the idea of cutting out caffeine is horrific to me, although WORTH IT if it really poses a threat to my little one! Most women I know drink caffeine anyway and the doc says a cup or two a day shouldn't be a big deal, however I feel guilty indulging in my habit. The only thing I am seeing online is that it can increase the risk of miscarriage (I am in my 2nd trimester so not AS concerned about that now). Does anyone have any knowledge of possible danger it could cause to my son, in the long term, especially after he is born? Feel free to leave your opinion but I am REALLY interested in the FACTS.

Thanks ladies :)

Re: Caffeine and pregnancy questions....

  • There is a level of caffeine that is totally safe and will NOT increase the risk of miscarraige. Talk to your own doctor about what he/she thinks is safe for you. I drank one cup of coffee in the morning every day through both of my pregnancies, and I have two wonderful happy healthy children. Oh, and I would have been a huge stress monster/*** if I had NOT had that one cup of coffee, so, for me, in the long run, it was a good thing I had my coffee!
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  • I think if you try to keep your consumption to a minimum, you should be fine. This was one of my main concerns in pregnancy but something funny happened. I no longer WANT coffee and I'm not having caffeine withdraw headaches either. 

  • Most doctors will recommend you limit your caffeine to 150-200 mg./day, which is about one 12 oz. cup. 
  • I had caffeine every day of my pregnancy.  I think it's good to cut back on your caffeine and stay under the 200 mg level, but I don't think you have to cut it out.  You can reduce your caffeine intake by mixing 1/2 decaf and 1/2 regular coffee.  Or just have a smaller mug of coffee. 
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  • I agree with everyone above me, that a small amount of caffeine is fine. That being said I actually cut coffee and caffeinated drinks out just because I am a total worrywart! :D
    So many people don't though & have perfectly healthy babies so I'm sure its fine in moderation!
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  • With my first, I cut out all caffiene while PG and couldn't drink it while PG or she'd be up all night.

    So...  lesson learned.  With my 2nd and 3rd I had 1-2 cups a day of caffiene (coke, coffee) a day and was able to drink 1-2 cups while BF.  A year and a half is a really long time to go w/o caffiene (PG & BF).

  • My midwife told me I can drink up to 200mg a day. That?s the amount in an 8oz cup of coffee. During my first and second trimesters I only drank decaf. Now that I?m in my third I drink short lattes from Starbucks. They don?t have as much caffeine as a small cup of coffee. If you are concerned I would suggest going to the National Institutes of Health website

  • image NikinDanK:

    Does anyone have any knowledge of possible danger it could cause to my son, in the long term, especially after he is born? Feel free to leave your opinion but I am REALLY interested in the FACTS.

    Not sure how/where you did your online search, but I would recommend using Google Scholar. Here's one article I found on caffeine intake and effects on infants: As a physician (read: I have to be at work very early in the AM and function on little sleep, and I have access to medical journals), I did a fair amount of research on this topic when I discovered I was pregnant last spring. The results of my Google Scholar search just now did not differ from the results I got from my search of medical journals. FWIW, I continued to drink my 1-2 diet sodas per day with no ill effects on me or my now-2wk-old (other than the occasional rude person asking "should you be drinking that?" ;) 


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  • When I was pg with DD1, the limit I found through my research was 300 mg. A few sources said 200 mg. I've always followed the 300 mg recommendation. A 6oz cup of coffee brewed at home is 100 mg. (Starbucks coffee has more caffeine.) A shot of espresso is 75mg. A 12oz can of Pepsi is 35 mg. 

    I drink a 12oz cup of coffee every morning. Most afternoons I have a can of diet Pepsi to make it through the rest of the day.

    It's actually more important to cut down on caffeine while nursing because the caffeine goes into your milk and is passed to baby. 

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  • I was a HUGE coffee drinker before I got pregnant (and in the early weeks before i knew I was pregnant) - I mean quad ventis everyday!  Once I found out I was pregnant I knew I couldn't give up the caffeine cold turkey because I didn't want to deal with withdrawal headaches.  I cut back significantly and stay below 200mg of caffeine each day.  For me that's a grande at Starbucks at the most.  I also don't drink caffeine on the weekends unless the hubby picks me up something small as a treat.  You can definitely still have caffeine, just don't overdo it.  My doc told me 200mg at the most and I read a book that said 300mg, but I'm sticking to the lower limit.  And make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day because caffeine can dehydrate you, which isn't good for the baby.
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