Among the many unresolved coffee puzzles, I still did not know the full answer to the perennial question: „Is it safe to drink coffee during pregnancy?” I decided to take a look at the current research on this subject, to a priori take care of new generations of coffee lovers. Girls, you can drink coffee during pregnancy or not Checking!
It turns out that in the matter of caffeine and pregnancy … it is difficult to say something for sure. In almost every question, the research completely contradicts and does not give unambiguous answers. Some of them indicate potential hazards, but they do not give you confidence that this is just caffeine. Others again rely on the estimated amount of caffeine consumed by the amount declared by women. None of this can be taken as hard scientific evidence. Currently, there are no studies that explicitly indicate an increased risk of any pregnancy complications while maintaining a moderate dose of caffeine. It is also worth not to be overly optimistic, because the lack of confirmation is not a negation. However, for now there is nothing to be frightened by the next anti-coffee headlines, not supported by valuable research.
The official position of world organizations (WHO, Health Canada) recommends that pregnant women do not exceed 300 mg of caffeine per day, although some countries suggest a reduction to 200 mg (USA, European Union). However, this is not a small amount, because in this pool will fit up to 300-400 ml of overflow coffee or a few shots of espresso!
In addition, I managed to collect a few facts, we know for coffee during pregnancy:
1. Caffeine in pregnancy works even twice as long!
Hormonal changes affect the metabolism of caffeine. Because of this, or thanks to this, caffeine works on pregnant women longer, from 8 to even 16 hours longer!1 During this time, you can still feel the influence of caffeine, so it is worth paying attention to the hours of consumption, so as not to become insomnia!
2. Nursing mothers can drink coffee!
Up to 200 mg of caffeine a day does not raise any worries either in relation to the mother or to the fed newborn. It is worth taking into account that larger amounts (from 1 g of caffeine per day) may cause changes in the composition of food, resulting in iron deficiency and anemia. So do not let yourself drink 1.5 liters of coffee a day!
3. Children can also drink coffee!
Consumption of caffeine by children is quite normal, because this is also found in tea, chocolate and Coke. However, scientists give them a green light: up to 2.5 mg / per kilogram of body weight per day is acceptable. So a 20 kg five-year-old can consume up to 100 mg of caffeine, or 3 espresso or 140 ml of black coffee.
4. And all these terrible tests?
In 2017, an American-Canadian team of researchers published an analysis of several hundred studies from the last dozen or so years. On more than 60 pages, they discuss in detail all conflicting information, generally remaining in a predictable pattern all the time: one study showed it, and the other study did not show it …
The final conclusions of their analysis of whether pregnant coffee is safe boil down to confirming the absence of evident evidence of any negative effects of caffeine during pregnancy and maintain a position with a suggested moderate intake of up to 300 mg per day.2
WHO allows me 300 ml per day! 🙂
1. The Safety of Ingested Caffeine: A Comprehensive Review. Jennifer L. Temple and others, Front. Psychiatry, 26 May 2017
2. Systematic review of caffeine consumption in healthy adults, pregnant women, adolescents, and children, Daniele Wikoff et al., Published in Food and Chemical Toxicology. Volume 109, Part 1, November 2017