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I love coffee! Is it safe during pregnancy?

Research studies have shown that consuming large amounts of caffeine while pregnant can lead to a variety of complications, including increased risk of stillbirth or miscarriage, fetal death after 20 weeks, low birth weight and birth defects. That said, you don’t have to give up your daily cup of Joe. Research has shown that consuming small amounts of caffeine has little or no effect on a developing fetus. Therefore, I recommend that pregnant women limit their caffeine intake to less than 300 milligrams daily.Coffee is relatively safe to drink if you limit yourself to three or four cups (1 cup equals 8 ounces) per day. But remember that caffeine can also be found in other products, such as tea, soda, chocolate and over-the-counter medications. Use the guide below to determine how much caffeine you are consuming:

1 cup of brewed coffee = 100 mg
1 mug of brewed coffee = 150 mg
1 cup of instant coffee = 75 mg
1 mug of instant coffee = 100 mg
1 cup of tea = 50 mg
1 can of cola = 40 mg
1 can of “energy drink” = 80 mg
1 50g bar of plain chocolate = up to 50 mg
1 50g bar of milk chocolate = up to 25 mg

So is it safe during pregnancy? Yes and no. There is no easy answer to this one, but a little bit of caffeine is unlikely to cause any problems. Just skip the double espressos!

Answered by Dr. Karen A. Scott