Make Mine Decaf
Many studies have focused on caffeine consumption as a possible obstacle to getting pregnant. It seems that too much caffeine can reduce your chances for conception. But just how much is too much?
If you're the kind of person who finds life just not worth living without coffee, you can relax. In order for coffee to have a negative impact on your ability to conceive, you'd have to drink many more than the usual two cups a day.
A reduction in fertility has only been observed in women who consume more than 300 mg. of caffeine each day. Considering that the usual cup of java has only 100-130 mg. of caffeine, you won't need to endure a state of deprivation in order to achieve conception. It's safe for you to have 2 cups a day without causing any deleterious effect on your fertility.
But keep in mind that many beverages contain caffeine. Even a cup of strong black or green tea has lots of caffeine. Carbonated drinks, too, often contain high amounts of the stuff.
All of this is knowledge to keep in mind if you're still trying to conceive by natural methods. However, once you enter the realm of assisted reproduction techniques (ART), thing begin to change. Thinking of undergoing an in vitro fertilization (IVF) procedure? You'll have to cut out most caffeine from your diet. Experts have found that even a single weak cup of tea containing just 50 mg. of the dreaded caffeine can have a harmful effect on a successful IVF result.
It gets worse. Experts haven't just focused on caffeine as something that impacts on your fertility but have also looked at the link between caffeine and birth defects. These experts have concluded that if you do suffer from fertility problems, you would be wise to eliminate all caffeinated products from your diet, whether or not you're considering IVF.
Women tend not to know when they are pregnant at the earliest stages of pregnancy. Caffeine may prove a danger to the new embryo. This cannot be proven with any certainty, since there is a moral problem with using pregnant women as research subjects.
What can be proven is that caffeine has a bad effect on sperm movement (motility). For this reason, caffeine has been linked to infertility in both sexes.
There has been one study on women in early pregnancy and caffeine consumption. In this San Francisco study, 1,063 women who ingested a daily 200 mg. of caffeine were found to have doubled their rate of miscarriage. This amount of caffeine is equal to 5 cans of a carbonated beverage, 5 cups of tea, or 2 cups of coffee. Researchers recommend you skip the coffee and do some power-walking or eat a handful of trail mix to boost your energy level, instead.