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  • Writer's pictureIsobel Austin-Little

IS COFFEE BAD FOR FERTILITY?


COFFEE FOR FERTILITY

When clients come to me and ask about caffeine and fertility, they typically ask about coffee consumption. So, let's talk about coffee.


Coffee isn't all doom and gloom! It's packed with antioxidants, helps improve energy, focus and memory, and tastes delicious. Nothing is better than the smell of coffee wafting through the house in the morning. But what about coffee consumption when trying to make a baby. 


The research is mixed when it comes to caffeine and fertility. Moderate daily consumption doesn't reduce fertility until 5 or more cups of coffee/day is consumed. At that point, it reduces the clinical pregnancy rate by 50% and the live birth rate by 40%.


So, you can still drink coffee, but keep in mind the following:


QUALITY

Quality is important for many reasons, and avoiding mycotoxins is one of them. Choose organic coffee where you can to avoid unnecessary consumption of mycotoxins (toxic compounds produced by moulds in food) and maximise the benefits of coffee. I love Exhale (if you want to try it out, you can use my discount code that offers you 50% off your first bag: ISOBEL50). Exhale's coffee is ethically sourced, organic and chemical free.


CAFFEINE FROM OTHER SOURCES

Remember that coffee is not the only source of caffeine; it is found in fizzy drinks, tea, green tea, dark chocolate and some medicines. So, it is helpful to tally up what you are having each day. Tommys Charity has a helpful tool to help you calculate your daily caffeine intake. You can find it here.


CAFFEINE HALF-LIFE

When you are swigging back cups of tea or coffee after 12pm. It is important to remember that caffeine has a half-life of up to 7 hours. So, if you are a poor metaboliser of caffeine, and you are drinking your last cup of coffee at 3pm, half of the caffeine content in that cup alone will be circulating in your bloodstream at 10pm and could interfere with your sleep.


HOW YOU METABOLISE CAFFEINE

Every body is different, and some people just cannot tolerate caffeine, or they may be drinking it but not realise yet how it is affecting them. If you struggling with adrenal fatigue, high cortisol or increased anxiety, perhaps caffeine is not for you. You may do better with herbal teas like yerba mate, peppermint, ginger, chamomile or green tea/matcha. 


KEEP IT BELOW 200ML PER DAY

The Royal College of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists recommend that you limit your caffeine intake to as little as possible during pregnancy. This translates to less than 200 milligrams (mg) per day. A small (220) filter coffee will have between 70 and 140 milligrams of caffeine, so you can see how easy it is to hit that quoata in a day. Although that may not be the case preconception, it is always good to get in to good habbits before conception happens.


Some of my go to coffee brands:





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