During pregnancy taking care of your health is most important for expectant mothers. What better way than to drink the healthiest drink in the world. The famous Green Tea!
It is one of the most consumed drinks for centuries. But can pregnant women drink green tea safely?
Certain foods are off-limits for women bearing a child.
Let’s see what are the expected benefits of green tea for pregnant ladies & if there’s any risk involved.
Is Green Tea Safe During Pregnancy?
Yes, green is generally safe during pregnancy. It is a nutritious drink that gives tremendous benefits in this condition.
During pregnancy, you are not allowed to take over-the-counter medications like pain relief, indigestion, etc. Therefore, a lot of women go to green tea for treating issues like gas and digestion in pregnancy.
However, a cup of green tea contains about 25mg of caffeine. So, care should be taken not to drink it excessively, especially if you are consuming other drinks like coffee or tea along with it daily.
Is It Good for The Baby?
You as a pregnant mother are now eating for two. Whatever you eat goes to the baby as well.
So, yes green tea is a safe option to drink through this journey of 9 months. It does not pose any risk to the fetus.
However, be careful and watch the caffeine limit and intake. Consuming 2 to 3 cups of green tea daily is safe for the mother and the baby.
7 Great Benefits Of Green Tea During Pregnancy
Pregnancy is a hard time for ladies. Sometimes it creates strange problems from gum diseases to high blood pressure to crying spells.
Green tea can be a great stress reliever and provide other benefits that are stated below:
1) Keep Mood Swings in Check
During pregnancy due to the fluctuating hormones, you get a lot of mood swings and changes in the body.
There is a useful compound in green tea called Theanine.
It is an amino acid that relaxes you and helps in alleviating mood swings.
2) Boosts Immune System
Green tea is known to be rich in antioxidants and helpful amount of caffeine.
These help in speeding metabolism and preventing destroying of important cells in the body.
Thus, your immune systems get stronger and fight diseases like BP, cancer, and heart issues.
3) Blood Sugar Levels
Most ladies in pregnancy feel down because of their low sugar levels. This happens because the body is using extra nutrition for the baby. Some even experience gestational diabetes due to this.
Drinking green tea helps to regulate glucose levels and thus is beneficial for pregnant mothers.
4) Take Care of Skin & Hair Issues
Acne and dark spots are common in pregnancy. The anti-inflammatory properties of green tea come to the rescue for this issue.
The antioxidants along with caffeine make your skin shiny and take care of hair follicles by reducing hair fall.
5) Regulate Blood Pressure
Preeclampsia is a serious complication that can occur in expectant ladies. A woman who suffers from hypertension can develop this condition.
Regulation of blood pressure is vital for preventing and treating it. Green tea takes care of the blood pressure and does not let it go to the dangerously higher side.
6) Teeth And Gums Are Protected
The fluctuating hormones may develop gingivitis and other teeth issues and gum diseases like falling of teeth and blood from gums.
Green tea is known to make oral health better. It can ease these issues for the pregnant.
It is a common problem in pregnant women. Green tea treats gas, indigestion, and tummy pains for them. It relaxes the stomach muscles which in return ease tummy muscles and even makes it easier for bowel movements.
2 Key Factors While Brewing Green Tea in Pregnancy
Now we know that no research claims not to drink green tea during pregnancy. As this must be a cautious period you should keep in mind certain things while steeping your green tea. We listed these below.
1) Brew Light Green Tea
Green tea should be brewed not more than 3-5 minutes for better taste and flavor.
Doing this not only increases the aroma and smell of green tea but also less caffeine will be released in the brew.
Thus, during pregnancy lighter brew will give more nutrition and less caffeine and makes it safer to drink.
2) Excessive Green Tea Consumption Is Bad
Although caffeine is in low quantities in green tea, it is the main thing to keep in check when you are an expectant mother.
Limit your green tea intake to one or two cups per day. Drinking more green tea will increase the caffeine in your system which may pose side effects which we will discuss in the article later.
How Much Green Tea Is Safe To Consume During Pregnancy?
The recommended amount of caffeine during pregnancy is 200 mg per day. So, two cups of green tea are considered safe during this time.
Pregnant women are concerned about taking good care of themselves and their unborn babies. By taking nutritious foods they can have a healthy pregnancy and baby.
If you exceed this limit, you can face adverse effects like the low birth weight of your child.
Therefore, overall caffeine intake should not exceed 200 mg daily. This includes other caffeine-based foods and drinks like teas, coffee, chocolates, etc.
Side Effects of Drinking Green Tea While Pregnant?
We now know that most doctors recommend consuming less than 200 mg of caffeine in a day.
The latest research shows that there may be no safe amount of caffeine during pregnancy and higher intake may have the risk of fetal growth, restriction low birth weight, etc.
Hence, the downsides of excessive green tea intake during pregnancy are mentioned below:
1) Iron Absorption in Pregnant Women
When a pregnant lady has too much green tea, it may affect the absorption of iron in the body. It can lead to anemia and the supply of iron to the blood.
This is a serious condition where oxygen and nutrients supplied to the baby are affected.
2) Inhibits Absorption of Folic Acid
Folic acid is very essential especially during the beginning 3 months of pregnancy.
Many women are prescribed folic acid supplements in this period.
Just like iron, green tea also interferes with folic acid absorption in the body when you exceed the recommended amount.
3) Sleeping Issues
Usually, the caffeine in green tea is broken down by the body and the excess leaves when you pee. However, during pregnancy, this does not happen and the body is unable to break the caffeine, it stays in the body. This affects the sleeping pattern.
There is another reason for disturbed sleeping patterns during pregnancy. When you drink green tea especially around bedtime, it acts as a natural diuretic and makes you pee more.
Due to the weight of the baby, you already have less control over your bladder thus, this makes you pee more and the late-night trips to the loo disrupt your sleep.
Tips For Expecting Mothers To Avoid Green Tea Side Effects
Following these tips will avoid the negative side effects of green tea. Take care of the following things before drinking green tea in pregnancy.
- Never drink green tea on an empty stomach. The tannins in green tea make it acidic when taken in the morning. This can also lead to nausea and stomach pain.
- Always drink green tea after meals when you are pregnant. Drinking with meals will interfere with iron absorption from food.
- It is recommended not to exceed two cups of green tea during pregnancy.
- Drinking green tea before bed will disrupt your sleep and make you go to the washroom all night.
Which Type Of Green Tea Is Safe During Pregnancy?
All varieties of green tea are safe to drink during pregnancy. All you need to do is to take it in limited quantities. Here we will discuss the three main types which are widely used and easily available:
1) Organic Green Tea
Organic green teas are mostly the least processed green teas. These are made from natural methods. It does not use any fertilizers or flavors. This is the safest green tea for pregnant mothers.
Wondering whether to take decaf or not? Well, more caffeine has negative side effects. If you choose decaf, you are minimizing your daily caffeine count. Therefore, it is a wise decision to drink decaf in pregnancy.
3) Japanese Green Tea
We talk about match green tea here for pregnant ladies because it has the highest number of antioxidants and is converted into fine powder.
Thus, drinking this green tea means green tea leaves are going into your body, not just the brewed content.
Pregnant women need to take care of the amount of caffeine they are consuming. You get the side effects only when you drink in excess.
Always consult your doctor before trying anything new in your diet.