Recent studies are showing some correlation between caffeine intake and delays in getting pregnant. Caffeine has previously been shown to have negative effects in animal studies both on fertility and the health of the offspring.
How caffeine affects female fertility
In women who are non-smokers, caffeine intake of over 300mg was shown to delay conception. This study was on women who had previously had a child. The women in the study who were smokers did not show the same effects from this amount of caffeine. Women who consume more than 300mg of caffeine a day may also have an increased risk of miscarriage and preterm labor.
How caffeine affects male fertility
Caffeine has not been shown to affect male fertility conclusively. One study showed that men born to women who drank large amounts of caffeine while pregnant had reduced sperm count or quality, however, more research is needed in this area.
How much caffeine is in that?
A single shot of espresso contains about 75mg of caffeine, and a Starbucks grande brewed coffee contains a staggering 330mg of caffeine. Your home brewed coffee or tea caffeine content will depend on how strong you make coffee. An average 6oz home-brewed cup of coffee will have about 77mg in it. Mountain dew has 55mg of caffeine, while Coke has 34mg. Energy drinks like Rockstar and Monster have 160 mg of caffeine. Most energy drinks include a warning on the label for children and pregnant women!
Don’t forget the other sources of caffeine you may be ingesting. Some pain relievers have caffeine in them, as well as chocolate and chocolate or coffee flavored ice cream. Excedrin has 65mg of caffeine in each capsule. Even decaf coffee has some caffeine in it!
How caffeine affects fertility-The bottom line
Couples who are trying to conceive should make sure they are getting less than 300mg of caffeine a day. Cut back on coffee and soda to help boost your chances of getting pregnant faster. You can still have a couple of cups of coffee, but you shouldn’t overdo it. Remember after you get pregnant that caffeine does cross the placenta to your baby, and should be consumed in modest amounts.