Caffeine isn’t embargoed during pregnancy—but the recommended safe limit has been reduced to 200mg. Here’s how to tell exactly how much pick-me-up is in your cuppa (or chocolate!).
Following research on the effects of caffeine on unborn babies, the previously advised 300mg limit had been lowered to 200mg. A hundred milligrams difference seems hardly significant, but it’s one extra cup of instant coffee—or two cheeky bars of choccie that your growing baby would do better without; especially considering the purported link between low birth weight and the stimulant. Charity Tommy’s, which supports studies on preemie birth, miscarriage and stillbirth, have compiled an uncomplicated caffeine calculator to help you keep your intake to the 200mg threshold. A few examples from the calculator include:
Can of cola: 40mg of caffeine
Mug of tea: 75mg
Bar of plain chocolate: 50mg
Cup of instant coffee: 100mg
Mug of filter coffee: 140mg
Energy drinks: a 250ml can: 80mg
Of course, if once in a while you exceed the limit, don’t stress out—the key is balance, and to work on keeping within the guidelines the majority of the time. Consistent caffeine overload is the issue, not the occasional espresso!
Work out your caffeine intake here.