Caffeine and Breastfeeding
It’s a question that keeps coming back in the research and in the head of new parents. Often, the reviews and the results can be misleading. But according to almost every source, the answer is yes. You can have caffeine when you’re breastfeeding. You do need to be aware of the quantity and don’t overdo it. Even if the caffeine you drink ends up in your breast milk, it’s just a small amount (less than 1%). So, if you drink coffee in moderation, there is no risk for the mother or the baby, but always keep in mind that each infant is different and that they might not all react the same way to caffeine stimulation.
Most experts say that a moderate amount of caffeine doesn’t cause any damage to the mother and the baby, it’s the exaggeration that is dangerous. If you have more than 2 or 3 cups of coffee a day, it’s possible that you will become irritable, or the new parents won’t get the sleep that they’ll need. But it is unlikely that it will affect your baby’s behavior. However, as always, you need to trust your instinct. If a mother has any doubts, you can always experiment. Take caffeine out of your diet, and see if your infant’s behavior changes. Every baby is different, so if you think that caffeine might affect yours, feel free to cut caffeine of your diet even if there’s no scientifically proven link. Watching your baby is the only way to know if you drink too much caffeine or no. A study published in the medical journal Pediatrics shows that there is no correlation between the sleep habits of the infant and the ingestion of caffeine during pregnancy or nursing.
But one question remains, what is too much caffeine? Well, it depends on your sources and the way you and your baby reacts to caffeine stimulation. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no more than 3 cups daily and the Leche League says that 5 cups a day is safe. Other experts agree that you should limit your caffeine intake to 300mg daily. In the end, you can be assured that most of the time your baby won’t be affected by your cup of coffee in the morning, so you can enjoy it. Because, in a world where we must go as fast as we can while taking care of our kids, we surely need our dose of caffeine.