Spill the Beans: Is Coffee OK During Pregnancy?

When you live in the PNW, coffee counts as its own food group.


Actually, if you can drive a mile without seeing a coffee shop, you must be in a part of town we haven't visited yet.


Since those beautiful little caffeinated beans make up such a big part of daily life, "Can I still partake?" becomes an incredibly important pregnancy question.


When we are looking for the best research and evidence around pregnancy related questions, we go straight to the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. So what better place to head for a question that potentially saves pregnant women from the "I didn't drink caffeine today" headache of death.


Let's talk about the facts of coffee/caffeine... the good, the bad, and the potentially ugly.


What could possibly be wrong with coffee?

Well, it's both a stimulant and a diuretic. Less sleep and peeing more during pregnancy is never something that sounds like a positive scenario.


Does caffeine go to the baby?

Yes. Caffeine crosses through the placenta and goes to the baby. Babies will not metabolize caffeine in the same way you do. It may cause some change in fetal movements in later pregnancy.


Does caffeine cause miscarriages?

Two studies were done that came back with opposite results. One study showed that consuming more than 200mg a day of caffeine increased the chance of miscarriage. The other study, there was no increased risk for those who drank a moderate amount of caffeine (200mg-350mg.) Because of the conflicting answers, the March of Dimes recommends that women limit their caffeine intake to less than 200mg a day.

Always consult your medical provider, but it seems that experts give the okay for less than 200mg of caffeine a day during pregnancy. 


How do those caffeine amounts translate to cups of coffee?


16oz Starbucks Cold Brew - 200mg


16oz Starbucks Cappuccino - 150mg


16oz Starbucks Americano - 225mg


8oz cup o' coffee - 163mg


While you're addiction (... err, HABIT) may have to change a bit, you're not necessarily sentenced to 9 months without your favorite brown beans.