Is It Ok To Drink A Little Coffee While Pregnant


The issue of whether it is safe to drink coffee while pregnant is a contentious one. Coffee is well known as an essential part of many people’s daily routines, with an estimated 83% of American adults consuming it on a regular basis. With so many people drinking caffeine on a daily basis, an important question that arises is if it is safe to do so while pregnant. The answer isn’t as straightforward as one might expect, as many experts disagree on the subject. Each opinion is based on the quality of the pregnant woman’s health and the amount of caffeine intake.

The Pro-Coffee Argument

Proponents of coffee consumption during pregnancy state that a moderate amount of caffeine will not cause any harm or discomfort to the mother or baby during pregnancy. This is echoed by the Centre for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI), who report that “a moderate intake of caffeine–under 200 milligrams per day–will not pose any serious health risks” to the pregnant woman or her fetus. CSPI findings are based on research conducted in the Netherlands in which pregnant women were monitored over a period of time. These studies found that mothers who drank coffee while pregnant did not experience any negative effects on the rate of fetal development or birth weights.

The Against-Coffee Argument

In contrast, others insist that it is best to completely avoid coffee during pregnancy. Critics of coffee consumption cite a study by the Harvard School of Public Health which reports that pregnant women who drink coffee, particularly in late pregnancy, are more likely to experience preterm delivery than those who abstain from it. Another concerning factor of coffee consumption during pregnancy is the risk of miscarriage. A study from Australia has found an increased risk of miscarriage in women who consume more than 200 milligrams of caffeine per day.

Safety Considerations

When determining whether it is safe to drink coffee while pregnant, it is important to consider a few safety factors:

  • Women should monitor their caffeine intake and make sure they do not exceed 200 milligrams per day.
  • Drinking coffee late in the pregnancy should be avoided.
  • Women with pre-existing health conditions should consult their doctor before consuming coffee.


If pregnant women can’t or don’t want to drink coffee, they can try some healthier alternatives such as decaffeinated coffee, herbal teas, green tea, and fruit juices. Studies conducted by the National Institute of Health have shown that these beverages are not only healthier for pregnant women, but can also provide them with the energy boost that coffee usually offers.

Potential Risks

Despite the majority of experts feeling that moderate levels of caffeine are generally safe during pregnancy, it is important to note that there are some potential risks associated with consuming coffee, especially in large amounts. The most common risk is that of an increased heart rate in the baby, as caffeine does cross the placenta. This can cause the baby’s heart rate to become irregular, leading to potential health problems. Therefore, it is best to err on the side of caution and stick to moderate intake.


When it comes to drinking coffee while pregnant, it is important to be careful and take safety into consideration. Moderate consumption of coffee is generally accepted as being safe, but it is best to abstain from it if possible. Healthier alternatives such as decaffeinated coffee, herbal teas, and fruit juices are widely available and can provide the same energy boost that coffee typically offers. As with any form of consumption during pregnancy, it is best to consult a doctor to ensure the health and safety of both mother and baby.

Additional Resources

For those looking for more information concerning coffee and pregnancy, there are a few resources available:

  • The American Pregnancy Association (APA) offers detailed information on caffeine consumption and the health of the baby. (
  • The National Institute of Health (NIH) has a wealth of information on nutrition during pregnancy. (
  • The Harvard Medical School provides an in-depth look at caffeine consumption during pregnancy. (

Coffee and Pregnancy: A Look at the Studies

When it comes to the issue of coffee consumption during pregnancy, a variety of studies have been conducted in order to determine the potential risks and benefits. While some studies have found that drinking moderate amounts of coffee while pregnant is generally safe, others have found that it may be linked to an increased risk of preterm delivery and miscarriage. It is important to consider the quality of the studies that have been conducted when looking at the issue of coffee and pregnancy.

Coffee and Fetal Development

When it comes to the effects of coffee on the fetus, there is still much research to be done in order to determine the extent of any potential impacts. One study conducted by the University of Göteborg in Sweden found that pregnant women who consumed one or more cups of coffee per day were more likely to have a baby with low birth weight. The authors of the study did acknowledge, however, that their findings were limited and that more research needs to be done in order to determine the exact effects of coffee on fetal development.

Coffee and Mood Swings

Another potential risk of consuming coffee while pregnant is the impact it may have on a woman’s mood and emotions. Research shows that caffeine can affect the body’s ability to regulate hormones, which can lead to mood swings and irritability in pregnant women. It is also important to note that the effects of caffeine on the body can be more pronounced in pregnant women due to their more sensitive hormonal system. For this reason, it is advisable to consume coffee in moderation while pregnant and to opt for caffeine-free alternatives whenever possible.

Coffee and Sleep Patterns

Finally, it is important to consider the effects of caffeine on sleep patterns. Caffeine is known to increase alertness and energy levels, which can affect the ability of pregnant women to get a good night’s sleep. Consequently, it is recommended that pregnant women limit their caffeine consumption during the day in order to promote better sleep at night. The National Sleep Foundation recommends that pregnant women consume no more than 200 milligrams of caffeine per day in order to avoid any sleep disruptions during pregnancy.

Nellie Mills is a coffee aficionado who loves to share her knowledge of the world's best beans. She has traveled all over the world in search of rare and unique coffee varieties, and she is passionate about teaching others about the nuances of different brews.

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