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Caffeine during Pregnancy

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Quick Overview

Caffeine is found in a lot of foods such as coffee, tea, energy drinks and chocolate. During pregnancy caffeine should be limited on a daily basis, as over consumption can be harmful to your baby’s health.


Caffeine during Pregnancy

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  • A pregnant mother preparing a healthy meal

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Guidance & Tips for Pregnancy

What is Caffeine?

Caffeine is found in the seeds, nuts, or leaves of about 60 plants native to Africa, East Asia and South America – in particular coffee and cocoa beans, tea leaves and kola nuts. The caffeine added into energy drinks is extracted from the various plants containing it.

Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant. It is the world's most widely consumed psychoactive drug. Unlike many other psychoactive substances, it is legal and unregulated in nearly all parts of the world.

A limit of 200mg/day is currently recommended because high levels of caffeine increase the risk of miscarriage or low birth weights.

The caffeine content of drinks and chocolate is:

1 shot of espresso coffee.......................................140mg

1 mug of filter coffee...............................................140mg

1 mug of instant coffee ..........................................100mg

1 cup of brewed coffee ..........................................100mg

1 mug of tea ............................................................75mg

1 cup of tea .............................................................50mg

1 cup/mug decaffeinated tea or coffee...........about 10mg

1 can of cola ...................................................up to 40mg

1 can of energy drink ......................................up to 80mg

1 bar of plain chocolate ...................................up to 50mg

1 bar of milk chocolate.....................................up to 25mg

Certain cold and flu remedies also contain caffeine.

Decaffeinated tea and coffee are made by soaking the beans or leaves in water to extract most of the caffeine. However a small amount of caffeine remains – about 10mg in a cup of tea or coffee.

Herbal teas are caffeine free alternative drinks to tea and coffee. Check labels, as some herbal teas contain added sugar.

Download our guide to caffeine in pregnancy here.

A healthy lifestyle during pregnancy

Keep your caffeine intake below 200mg

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