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Pregnancy Diet How Much Caffeine Is Too Much

Aug 25, 2008
One of the first things most of women prepare to say goodbye to once they see those two pink lines on their pregnancy tests is caffeine. Many women will stop their caffeine habit cold turkey out of the sheer fear of doing some sort of damage to the new life growing inside of them. These women will swear off anything that has caffeine in it from coffee, and soda to even chocolate. Then there are some women who will still drink caffeine but cut back. Instead of drinking five cups of coffee a day, they might cut back to a maximum of one cup of coffee to get them through the day.

Their mothers and grandmothers will probably tell them that they drank the same amount of caffeine pregnant as they did when they were not pregnant and their children turned out fine. However, a lot more research has been done since their time and studies are showing that too much caffeine can cause some complications such as pre-term labor and/or low birth weight.

So how much caffeine is too much caffeine? Doctors are telling their patients that a moderate amount of caffeine will not harm their babies. Even though caffeine does cross the placenta, anything less than 300 milligrams a day (an 8 ounce cup of strong coffee) will not do any harm. Anything over 300 milligrams puts your baby at risk and studies have also shown that women who drink more than 300 milligrams of caffeine a day during their first trimester have a slightly higher risk of a miscarriage.

Studies have also shown that women who had over 500 milligrams of caffeine a day had babies who had faster heart rates and faster breathing rates. These babies also spent more time awake in their first few days of life rather than peacefully sleeping after their long journey.

There are a number of other reasons why women might want to cut back on the amount of caffeine they drink during pregnancy. For starters, it has no nutritional value. If there is ever a time for women to be aware of their nutritional needs it is when they are pregnant. Second, caffeine is a stimulant which will increase their heart rate and can cause insomnia and headaches which can put some stress on their growing little one. Third, caffeine can cause heartburn. If you have been pregnant before you know that heartburn can be a burden to begin with, and caffeine just makes it worse. Lastly it is a diuretic which means it can cause fluid loss which can quickly lead to dehydration.

While it is not necessary for women to give up all caffeine through out the duration of their pregnancy. Women should learn how to drink it in moderation or don't drink it at all. If it's difficult to stick to only one cup of coffee a day then they are better off drinking none. Another possibility is switching to caffeine free sodas and even decaf coffee. Remember though that decaf coffee still contains small traces of caffeine so make sure that is taken into consideration.

A woman's pregnancy diet will factor largely into the health and wellness of her baby. Your nutrition is what is building this baby. Give the baby a head start by eating a healthy pregnancy diet, and cutting out the caffeine.
About the Author
For more information about a healthy pregnancy diet stop by http://naturalpregnancyproject.com/pregnancy-diet-good-nutrition-is-key-to-a-healthy-pregnancy/
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