Caffeine and pregnancy can be a confusing pairing for soon-to-be mothers, but is there a safe amount?
Considered a psychoactive and stimulant drug, caffeine has been shown to affect mood, stamina, a person’s cerebral vascular system and gastric and colonic activity, all of which can impact reproductive health. Does this mean you can’t mix caffeine and pregnancy with your morning cup of joe? Not necessarily.
The science is conflicting and confusing at this point. According to two studies in 2008, caffeine has been linked with miscarriage and high levels can delay conception. However, a study released by Epidemiology, a medical journal, shows there is no increased risk for women that consume between 200mg and 350mg of caffeine per day. Most experts have in fact concluded that moderate levels of caffeine during pregnancy (150mg to 300mg per day) won’t have a negative effect on a growing fetus.
Bottom line? Every woman is different so listen to your body and/or consult your doctor. But, research does suggest that caffeine and pregnancy together in moderation can be safe. Below, is a handy guide to caffeine levels in some popular drinks.
Caffeine and Pregnancy: How Much In Your Cup?
Pregnant women and women trying to conceive should first know what the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) classifies as “low,” “moderate,” “high” and “heavy” levels of caffeine.
- Low to Moderate intake – 130mg to 300mg per day
- Moderate intake – 200mg to 300mg per day
- High intake – above 400mg per day
- Heavy intake – more than 6,000mg per day
Here’s how some popular drinks and treats stack up per serving:
- Plain, brewed 8 oz cup of coffee contains 135mg of caffeine
- Plain, decaffeinated 8 oz cup of coffee contains 5mg of caffeine
- Espresso 1 oz contains 40mg of caffeine
- Regular brewed tea 8 oz cup contains 53mg of caffeine
- Green tea 8 oz contains between 25 and 40mg of caffeine
- Black tea 8 oz contains between 40 and 70mg of caffeine
- Coca-Cola Classic 12 oz glass contains 35mg of caffeine
- Diet Coke 12 oz glass contains 47mg of caffeine
- Pepsi-Cola 12 oz glass contains 38mg of caffeine
- A Monster Energy Drink 8.5 oz can contains 160mg of caffeine
- Milk Chocolate Candy bar 1.5 oz size contains 9mg of caffeine
- Hershey’s Special Dark Chocolate Bar 1.45 oz contains 31mg of caffeine
- Ready to eat chocolate puddings 4 oz contain 9mg of caffeine
- Ben & Jerry’s Coffee Flavored ice cream 8 oz serving size contains 68mg of caffeine
Remember to monitor your servings and add up total daily caffeine intake.