Caffeine and Miscarriage

Caffeine Packs A Double-Whammy

Oh, how we often depend upon our cup of coffee in the morning to ‘kick-start the heart' and a diet soda in the afternoon to keep our eyes from losing focus. Recent research has tagged caffeine as a significant contributor to both infertility and miscarriage, so if you're trying to get pregnant and stay pregnant, then perhaps it is time to rethink your caffeine intake.

The Effects Of Caffeine On A Woman's Fertility

Several studies have been done over the years in an attempt to define whether caffeine has an effect upon fertility and it has been found repeatedly that women who consume more than the equivalent of one cup of coffee per day were 50 percent less likely to become pregnant, per menstrual cycle, as those women who drank less. It was found that the more coffee a woman drank, the lower her chances of becoming pregnant.

In a Danish study of 423 couples, it was found that, compared to women who drink minimal amounts of caffeine, those who had a moderate consumption showed a lowered chance for conception and those who drank a higher amount of caffeine had an even lower chance than the moderate consumers to conceive. This relationship held up after adjustments were made for weight, alcohol intake, female reproductive organ diseases, semen quality and duration of the menstrual cycle.

Caffeine Produces Insulin Resistance

A study done in 2005, which was published in the journal Diabetes Care, showed that it is more difficult to control blood sugar if caffeine is in the equation. Insulin resistance, as this condition is known, can play a very important role in women as it can cause a failure in ovulation. Women who are obese or suffer with PCOS are already dealing with insulin resistance and it is known that women with these conditions are often unable to conceive a pregnancy.

Increased Risk Of Miscarriage And Caffeine Consumption

Research done by the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research concluded that high doses of daily caffeine during pregnancy, whether from coffee, tea, caffeinated soda or hot chocolate, cause an increased risk of miscarriage. It showed that women who consumed 200 milligrams or more of caffeine per day had twice the risk of miscarriage as those who did not consume any caffeine. Even women who had an intake of less than 200 milligrams of caffeine increased their risk for miscarriage by 40 percent.

It Really Is The Caffeine-Not The Chemicals

It appeared that the actual cause of the increased risk was the caffeine itself rather than the chemicals which may appear in coffee. They arrived at this conclusion because similar results of increased risk of miscarriage were observed in the caffeine intake of non-coffee products, such as tea, caffeinated soda, and hot chocolate.

De-Kun Li, MD, Ph.D., an investigator with the Kaiser Permanente Division of Research and lead investigator of the study done in 2005 said, "The main message for pregnant women from these findings is that they probably should consider stopping caffeine consumption during pregnancy because this research provides clearer and stronger evidence that high doses of caffeine intake during pregnancy can increase the risk of miscarriage."


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