I’m pregnant…do I have to give up coffee?
After the elation of receiving the results of a positive pregnancy test, sometimes panic settles in.
You started wondering…. Have I had alcohol in the past month? What changes do I need to make to my lifestyle for a healthy pregnancy? Can I still have my morning java?
The good news is you don’t have to give up coffee. But, you may have to think about how much coffee (or tea) you drink each day because of the caffeine..
A good starting point is to take a look at what Health Canada recommends for caffeine intake:
Health Canada recommends no more than 300 mg of caffeine while you are pregnant. Why? Well, you might not know this but levels higher than that have been associated with increased risk of miscarriage and low birth weights.
Now you’re wondering “what the heck does 300mg of caffeine look like?” It’s about 16 ounces of regular coffee. So, if you’re used to your extra-large, 20 ounce cup to kick-start the day – you would be wise to adjust that amount.
Panicking? Don’t. You’ve got this. You don’t have to do this cold turkey of you’re a extreme coffee lover. Take a week to adjust your amounts down to a mutually healthy level for you and the baby.
And, another tip. Instead of thinking, “Oh – crap. I can’t have my super sized coffee.” Think of it this way: “I can have two-8 oz cups of coffee this morning. I’ll have one now and one later”.
Try to avoid thinking you’re sacrificing something. You’re not. All you’re doing is reducing the amount.Heather D.
What about tea or pop, or other treats with caffeine?
Is there caffeine in tea? The answer is yes, but not as much as in coffee. So, if you’re an Earl Grey lover and have a couple of pots of tea per day, again (like with coffee) find a way to reduce the amount you’re drinking two or three 8 ounce cups a day. Or, look for decaffeinated tea if you enjoy the ritual of pouring a cup of tea.
It’s also good to remember caffeine can be found in pop. In pop of all colours – not just the dark colas. It’s also found in energy drinks, some medications, and in chocolate.
And the other piece of the caffeinated world. Caffeine is in other products more often than you might think.
To help you know more, here’s an extensive list of caffeine content of common drinks and foods:
Are herbal teas safe during pregnancy?
People will often turn to a cup of herbal tea to reap the benefits of their herbs. Now, while part of the feelgood movement is the interest in herbal teas, or tisanes, herbs have medicinal qualities. It’s important you know which ones are safest for you during pregnancy and which are not. Some herbs can have a negative effect on healthy fetal growth and development. Here is a quick reference that lists those teas known to be safe and those to avoid while pregnant.
Most herbal teas are caffeine-free. However, be sure to read the ingredients list. Some herbal teas can be mixed with real tea, in addition to the herbs listed.
It’s up to you….
So, if you want to, go ahead and order a “Starbucks Double Ristretto Venti Half-Soy Nonfat Organic Chocolate Brownie Iced Vanilla Double-Shot Gingerbread Frappuccino Extra Hot With Foam Whipped Cream Upside Down Double Blended” :). Yup. I looked it up. Just kidding.
Seriously, you can have a cup of coffee or tea, all you need to do is have a little less and enjoy it more.