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Is green tea safe to consume during pregnancy?

Hey, first of all, congratulations girl. That’s a piece of big news. Woman are told to drink a lot of fluids during pregnancy. Especially water should be consumed 8-12 glasses. It helps in the formation of the placenta and amniotic fluids. It seems like you used to drink green tea. Right? But right now you are worried that is it safe to have green tea during pregnancy or will it mess up with the baby’s health? Technically, it shouldn’t. But because of the presence of flavonoids and catechin, it may lead to difficulties if consumed in unmoderated amounts.

Does green tea improve the chances of getting pregnant?

Is green tea good for fertility? Several couples have this question when they are planning pregnancy and the answer is a big YES. Green tea contains compounds, that have fertility-boosting elements. Here is a list of elements present in green tea that boosts fertility: 

Vitamin C: Since Vitamin C reacts with the free radicals present in the body hence it prevents any harm to the reproductive cells. Hence it dramatically improves the chances of pregnancy.

Antioxidants: Since green tea extract has antioxidants, they also prevent any harm to the reproductive cells. Hence, they play an important role in preparing the body for pregnancy.

Minerals: The composition of green tea has vital micronutrients such as zinc, manganese, chromium etc in different quantities. The nutrients help in improving egg viability in females and in males it improves sperm count and motility. 

So we can put this discussion to rest, whether green tea helps in increasing chances of pregnancy. The answer is a big fat yes.

Along with this, there are other benefits of green tea for a pregnant woman:

  • For people who suffer from hypertension (normally called blood pressure of BP in India), green tea can help you regulate blood pressure and helps in preventing certain diseases arising due to hypertension. 
  • Green tea is a good source of antioxidants. These antioxidants fight with free radicals in the body which are responsible for deadly diseases such as cancer, heart diseases, blood pressure etc.
  • Green tea also helps in fighting mood swings due to antioxidants, which increases metabolic rate.
  • Green tea helps in curing indigestion as it prevents stomach ailments.
  • Research also suggests that green tea promotes oral health and enhances bone strength

Is it safe to consume green tea on an empty stomach during pregnancy?

No, green tea shouldn’t be consumed on an empty stomach anyhow. Because it leads to more absorption of caffeine which leads to dizziness, nausea, panic and hyperactivity. To read more about the side effects of green tea, click here. 

How much green tea is safe to consume during pregnancy?

According to health experts, a pregnant woman should reduce the overall intake of caffeine. There are plenty of caffeine sources that we may or may not be aware of such as – chocolate, coffee, caffeinated drinks. The overall caffeine intake should be less than 200mg a day. Food Safety Authority specifically suggests moderating the intake of green tea to less than 4 cups a day for everyone. 

Several factors affect the level of caffeine in a cup of green tea such as: 

  • Size of serving
  • Quantity of leaf used while preparing a cup of green tea.
  • Brewing time
  • Variety of tea consumed

Different brands also have different levels of caffeine in a cup of green tea. So, we can safely assume a cup of green tea has 30-50mg of caffeine.

Disclaimer: Some green teas have as high as 70mg of caffeine in them. 

You should consult a doctor before consuming your green tea if you have herbal green tea i.e. if you mix your green tea with herbal ingredients. The quantity of green tea you consume as well as your medical history will also determine whether or not certain herbs are likely to be a problem.

Are there any advantages of drinking green tea during pregnancy?

No, green tea has no pregnancy-specific benefits. Unlike ger root for nausea or red raspberry leaf in later pregnancy for uterine health, green tea has no specific benefits for the pregnant woman and the baby. 

You should moderate drink tea intake during pregnancy

  1. EGCG in green tea can alter folate levels: The EGCG in green tea which is responsible for preventing cancer may be problematic if you are pregnant. Folate levels are required for a pregnant woman because it leads to the normal development of the child and healthy pregnancy. 
  2. High levels of caffeine may lead to miscarriage: Caffeine intake negatively affects the baby. Caffeine can cross the placenta to your baby. Very high levels of caffeine can lead to the lower weight of the baby. This may lead to health problems such as respiratory diseases, intraventricular haemorrhage in the brain, or sudden infant death syndrome.
  3. Large amounts of green tea can worsen green tea symptoms: High caffeine intake from green tea could result in dizziness. It may worsen nausea and vomiting or diarrhoea and cause you to lose your appetite. At the very least, you could end up feeling very irritable.

Things to keep in mind while purchasing green tea for pregnant woman:

  • Opt for well-known government-certified brands.
  • Buy a properly packaged green tea.
  • Once opened, store green in a dry, air-tight container.
  • Examine the ingredients on the packet. It’s best not to have green tea blended with other herbs as some of them are not safe for you and your baby.

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