Do you crave cold drinks? Are u worried and thinking is it safe to drink soda or cold drinks during pregnancy? Well, you are not alone who is in this fix. There are many soon to be mommies sailing in the same boat. Pregnancy is known for its mood swings and food cravings. Though you might crave for a cold drink in pregnancy, it is not really something that you should overindulge into.
There are many better alternatives to cold drinks which are healthy as well as tasty. Let us explore such alternatives in the later part of the article. Before which we will see why it is not safe to drink cold drinks or soda during pregnancy?
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What Are Cold Drinks?
Technically, any drink that is served cold is called a cold drink. However, in general use, cold drinks are referred to as soft drinks or aerated drinks. Soft drinks are non- alcohol based drinks. They typically contain carbonated water, an artificial sweetener or a natural flavouring agent. Soft drinks, in general, are considered to be an indulgence drink. It doesn't have anything to offer to health. Let us see how far it holds true for someone who is in a dilemma to try soft drinks during pregnancy.
Is It Safe To Drink Soda Or Cold Drinks During Pregnancy?
“No” It is not safe to drink cold drink or soda during pregnancy. Once a while in moderation is fine.
It always prudent to eat or drink a food that can bring some health benefits. It becomes all the more important when you conceive. What you eat or drink decides the growth and development of the fetus. Scientifically, cold drinks are not shown to be dangerous for the fetus when consumed in MODERATION. Still, why to waste our time and energy on something that has zero benefits to offer for health. Some Potential risks and effects of cold drink in pregnancy are discussed below:
Unhealthy Weight Increase: Artificial Sweetener and Preservatives In Soft Drinks
Preservatives, artificial sweeteners and flavours are very unhealthy for pregnancy and in general. Sadly most of the soft drinks including diet sodas contain them in large amount. The high content of sugar in them can cause unnecessary and unhealthy weight gain for the expectant mother. This might result in complications for the baby with respect to his growth and development.
Risk of Miscarriage: Caffeine Content of Cold Drinks
Most of the cold drinks contain caffeine especially the ones with cola (Coke, Pepsi, Thumbs Up, Diet Coke etc.) Caffeine is considered to be dangerous when over consumed. It can cross the placenta and reach the growing fetus. A small amount of consumption of caffeine does not cause any threat to the growing fetus. However, if it is over consumed it decreases blood flow to the placenta. This is the reason why overconsumption of caffeine during pregnancy is linked to increased risk of miscarriage. A maximum of 200 mg of caffeine per day is suggested for a carrying mother by experts. Read the labels to check the content of caffeine in your cold drinks, coffee, tea, chocolates etc to arrive at the final daily amount of consumption.
A study has also linked high intake of caffeinated soft drinks during pregnancy with Increased risk of Cerebral Palsy(CP) in the child. Being a diuretic caffeine can also lead to loss of water and other body fluids. This may result in dehydration and scarcity of some important nutrients like calcium.
Acidity and Disturbed Bowl: Carbonated Drinks During Pregnancy
Carbon- dioxide bubbles are present in soft drinks or carbonated drinks. When you enter your third trimester of pregnancy, your sensitivity for various things increases. These carbonated drinks during pregnancy can make you feel worse. They may give you severe indigestion and heartburns. This is an important reason to avoid cold drink in pregnancy.
Risk of Child Asthma and Allergic Rhinitis: Consumption of Artificially-Sweetened Soft Drinks in Pregnancy
Research shows that carbonated artificially-sweetened soft drinks are associated with registry-based asthma and allergic rhinitis. These results suggest that consumption of artificially-sweetened soft drinks during pregnancy may play a role in offspring allergic disease development.
Poor Digestive Responses: Ice Cold Beverage
Consumption of ice-cold beverages, in general, is considered to be detrimental for health.
Your blood vessels get smaller or constrict when you drink cold beverages. The digestion gets restricted. The reason is that the body expends all its energy in regulating the temperature. Which otherwise would have been used in digesting food and absorbing nutrients.
There is a general practice of sipping cold drinks while having meals. If you also do so then kindly abstain from it. Because drinking cold beverages while having food results in solidification of fats from the food. This makes digestion of unwanted fat complicated.
Metabolic Disorders and Childhood Weight Issues: Aerated Drinks During Pregnancy
Another reason to avoid cold drink in pregnancy is related to increased BMI. Experts suggest that if a woman regularly consumes soft drink during pregnancy then she might deliver babies who have a higher Body Mass Index (BMI). These infants during their first year may witness metabolic disorders and weight issues.
Child Obesity: Drinking Diet Beverages Like Diet Coke While Pregnant
If you are diagnosed with gestational diabetes and you are consuming diet beverage like diet Pepsi or diet coke while pregnant than please be careful. A recent study reveals that kids born to women with gestational diabetes who consumed one artificially sweetened beverage daily were more likely to be obese at age 7. This is in comparison to women with gestational diabetes who drank water instead of artificially sweetened beverages. Childhood obesity is linked to various health conditions like diabetes and heart issues in later life.
[When your little one is old enough, you can try these: 5 Types of Drinks to Give Your Toddler]
Beyond Cold Drinks During Pregnancy - Some Healthy Alternatives
Giving up or reducing to the bare minimum of something that you really enjoy is tough. No doubt about it! However, why not try it if it is Worth. Now, let us try looking beyond and include something tasty and healthy instead of soft drinks in pregnancy. In addition to your regular required consumption of water, you can include:
Tender Coconut Water:
It is a natural source of many electrolytes and minerals. It prevents dehydration and restores the salts lost in sweat. It brings relief from overheating.
Lemonade with a Twist:
Lemonade or nimbu pani is rich in vitamin C which aids in absorption of iron. You can make this drink interesting by adding some mint leaves . You can also add chia seed to it to enjoy extra benefit of omega -3 in your drink. Allow the seed to swell in water before you consume the drink.
What simpler and healthier drink than a buttermilk. You can enjoy both sweet and savory version of this drink
Fruit and Vegetable Juice:
Juices have numerous health benefits to offer. Choose the one that appeals to your taste buds.
[You can explore some more options here: 7 Drinks You Should Not Miss Out On During Pregnancy]
Soft drinks during pregnancy is not something that you should indulge into. Although, It is safe to drink it in moderation overindulgence must be avoided. Some potential risks of overindulgence are discussed above in the article. Hence, it is wise to choose healthier drink options to satiate cravings during pregnancy rather than falling for soda or soft drinks.