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Pregnancy hormones may affect coffee consumption

According to a recent study researchers have found that it is the health of a woman's pregnancy that influences her taste for coffee. They found that the surge of hormones that comes with a healthy pregnancy may cause some women to lose their crave for coffee.

Pregnancy hormones may affect coffee consumption

According to a recent study, researchers have found that it is the health of a woman during pregnancy that influences her taste for coffee. They found that the surge of hormones that comes with a healthy pregnancy may cause some women to lose their taste for coffee. Researchers at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health in Cincinnati, Ohio USA followed 92 women during the beginning of their pregnancies, recording how much coffee they drank. All the women drank coffee during their last menstrual period, and most stopped or decreased the amount they consumed during the first trimester of pregnancy. They also noted the women's symptoms of nausea and vomiting, and measured levels of pregnancy hormones in their urine. In general, higher levels of pregnancy hormones during early pregnancy indicate that the foetus is more likely to be healthy. Most women cited coffee aversion as the reason they decreased the amount of coffee they drank during early pregnancy. In addition, women who decreased their coffee intake during early pregnancy also tended to have higher levels of pregnancy hormones. Coffee drinking also appeared linked to how much a woman was vomiting, but not to nausea or her decreased appetite. The study showed that coffee consumption decreased significantly as hormone levels rose, suggesting that healthy increases in hormones can cause women to cut back on coffee. The researchers also found that the women who drank more coffee tended to have lower levels of one particular pregnancy hormone. While these lower levels were still enough to maintain pregnancy, they could be of concern to women with fertility problems. Although previous studies have suggested that drinking coffee early in pregnancy can increase the risk of miscarriage, there have been no clear studies to date that show whether drinking moderate amounts of coffee during pregnancy has detrimental effects. If a woman has a question about coffee consumption during pregnancy, she should consult her doctor.

American Journal of Epidemiology September 2002, Vol. 156: 428-437
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