Soft drinks during pregnancy- Is it harmful?

Coca-cola being poured into a glass

When you are eating and drinking for two, you should be very mindful of what you are putting into your body. There are certain food and beverages you’ll be asked to completely avoid when you are pregnant as it can affect the development of your baby. We all know alcohol is a big no-no and the jury is still out on the consequences of consuming coffee during pregnancy. But what about soft drinks? ‘Can I consume soft drinks during pregnancy?’ is a question that must be on the mind of every pregnant mother. Read on to know whether it’s safe to drink soft drinks during pregnancy.

Is it safe to consume soft drinks when pregnant?

Short answer – No. Soft drinks will not help your pregnancy. Let’s understand why you should avoid soft drinks while pregnant. Nothing feels better than to sip on a cold glass of your favourite soft drink on a sunny day. It’s tasty and refreshing. But is the taste worth it for a pregnant woman? Soft drinks contain a lot of additives like sugar, carbonated water, and caffeine which are not good for a pregnant woman. Some advocates make the argument that when consumed in small and limited quantities, these ingredients are not potent enough to cause any harm to your body. So, some say that it’s okay to consume soft drinks in very small quantities and rarely. It should be noted that the same argument of “small quantity, no noticeable damage” can also be made for consuming alcohol while drinking! This is why it’s important to be aware of why it’s harmful too. Read on to know the effects of drinking soft drinks during pregnancy.

Harmful effects of soft drinks during pregnancy!

Pregnant woman holding a glass of soft drink
  • Caffeine- One of the main reasons soft drinks is said to be bad for pregnant women is because of the huge amount of caffeine present in these refreshing drinks. Caffeine enters the bloodstream directly and reaches the baby through the placenta. Caffeine is toxic to developing babies. In fact, a caffeine intake above 300mg even causes miscarriages. Hence, it’s very important to avoid food and beverages that contain caffeine and this includes soft drinks.
  • Sugar and additives- The reason soft drinks taste so good is because they are loaded with sugar. They also contain artificial preservatives and additives that are quite unhealthy, especially for a pregnant woman. Sugar, especially white refined sugar, when consumed in large quantities, can lead to weight gain, hormonal imbalance, mood swings, and complications with pregnancy. It’s important to remember that you might already be consuming a lot of sugar through other food and beverages, so your body might not need this extra dose of sugar.
  • Zero nutritional value- Soft drinks might be incredibly delectable but they add no nutritional value to your body. This wouldn’t have been an issue if they didn’t have so many harmful effects. All they do is add on calories without providing any nutrition to you and your baby.

If your love for soft drinks still has you confused about this issue, here is some advice – try and avoid soft drinks during your pregnancy if you don’t want complications during pregnancy.

****All the information provided is only for informational purposes and should not be considered as medical or professional advice. Should you have any concerns or questions, please consult your doctor or physician.

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