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Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Pregnant? Avoid too much coffeee

Pregnant women who drink two or more cups of coffee a day have twice the risk of having a miscarriage as those who avoid caffeine, U.S. researchers said on Monday.

They said the study provides strong evidence that high doses of caffeine during pregnancy -- 200 milligrams or more per day or the equivalent of two cups of coffee -- significantly increase the risk of miscarriage.

And they said the research may finally put to rest conflicting reports about the link between caffeine consumption and miscarriage.

"Women who are pregnant or are actively seeking to become pregnant should stop drinking coffee for three months or hopefully throughout pregnancy," said Dr. De-Kun Li of Kaiser Permanente Division of Research, whose study appears in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology.

"There has been a lot of uncertainty about this," Li said in a telephone interview. "There was no firm advice from professional societies to say what a pregnant woman should do about caffeine intake."

Li said anywhere from 15 to 18 studies have found a link between caffeine use during pregnancy and miscarriage. But that association has been clouded by the fact that many pregnant women avoid caffeine because it makes them nauseated, which could skew the results.

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