Caffeine And Pregnancy Essay, Research Paper
Caffeine and PregnancyToday, with increased attention to maternal nutrition, many women wonder if it’s safe to consume caffeine-containing foods or beverages during pregnancy. While some studies have shown conflicting results, the weight of scientific research continues to indicate that moderate caffeine consumption does not affect fertility, or cause adverse health effects in the mother or child.FertilitySince many women are delaying pregnancy, more research has focused on identifying the factors that may affect fertility, including caffeine. One small study in 1988 suggested that caffeine, equivalent to the amount consumed in 1- to 2-cups of coffee daily, might decrease female fertility. However, the researchers acknowledged that delayed conception could be due to other factors they did not consider, such as exercise, stress or other dietary habits. Since then, larger, well-designed studies have failed to support these findings.In 1990, researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Harvard University examined the association between the length of time to conceive and consumption of caffeinated beverages. The study involved more than 2,800 women who had recently given birth and 1,800 women with the medical diagnosis of primary infertility. Each group was interviewed concerning caffeine consumption, medical history and lifestyle habits. The researchers found that caffeine consumption had little or no effect on the reported time to conceive in those women who had given birth. Caffeine consumption also was not a risk factor for infertility.Supporting those findings, a 1991 study of 11,000 Danish women examined the relationship among number of months to conceive, cigarette smoking and coffee and tea consumption. Although smokers who consumed eight or more cups of coffee per day experienced delayed conception, nonsmokers did not, regardless of caffeine consumption.
MiscarriagesThe association between caffeine and miscarriages continues to be researched. Recently, researchers from McGill University in Montreal published a study showing a relationship between caffeine intake and miscarriage. While caffeine intake before and during pregnancy appeared to be associated with increased fetal loss, the authors failed to account for a number of factors that could result in a false association, including effects of morning sickness or nausea, the number of cigarettes smoked and amount of alcohol consumed.Just prior to the McGill study, a research team from the U.S. National Institute of Child Health and Human Development conducted a study of 431 women. The researchers monitored the women and the amount of caffeine they consumed from conception to birth. After accounting for nausea, smoking, alcohol use and maternal age, the researchers found no relationship between caffeine consumption of up to 300 mg per day and adverse pregnancy outcomes, including miscarriage.Additionally, in 1992, researchers analyzed the effects of cigarettes, alcohol and coffee consumption on pregnancy outcome in more than 40,000 Canadian women. Although alcohol consumption and smoking tended to have adverse effects on pregnancy outcome, moderate caffeine consumption was not associated with low birth weight or miscarriages.by email@example.com