Caffeine intake for men and women raises the risk for a miscarriage

Caffeine may play part in miscarriages

CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - Health professionals have issued new guidelines when it comes to caffeine intake and miscarriages - but you may be surprised to learn that men are the subject.

Research from the National Institutes of Health and Ohio State University shows that caffeine intake from both men and women influence miscarriages.

Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist and Perinatologist at Saint Francis Medical Center Dr. Naomi Wahl said a lot of potential parents don't realize the effects of caffeine on a pregnancy.

"I was surprised they looked at the input from the man, because I think women tend to bare the brunt of this a lot more than the guys because we carry the pregnancies," Dr. Wahl said.

Researchers evaluated 344 pregnancies - 28 percent of which ended in miscarriage.

"Basically if you have more than two cups of coffee a day you have a higher risk of miscarriage both for the mom and dad," Dr. Wahl said.

First-time mom Emma Meraz said she completely cut out caffeine and sweets as a personal choice.

"I decided I didn't want to drink caffeine because I knew the effects it had on me and it was kinda hard at first to not want the caffeine.... If I wanted soda, I would drink juice or I would drink like sprite or that kind of stuff that doesn't have caffeine in it, it's still soda but it doesn't have any of the caffeine."

Dr. Wahl says that if you are planning a pregnancy, cut back on risky health behaviors three to six months before you try - and that goes for men, too.

"I think it's interesting that even their exposure makes a difference, that really does make sense that that should be but I think it's the first time someone's actually looked at it and I think that's good."

Dr. Wahl said she recommends every women take a multivitamin with at least .4mg of folic acid.

The study said women who took the daily multivitamin before conception and through early pregnancy were less likely to miscarry than women who did not.

Variables in the study include other lifestyle risk factors and age, with women 35 or older more likely to have a miscarriage.

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