Are you caffeine free throughout your pregnancy, to protect your baby's health? If you're anything like me, you may be dying for a nice espresso half an hour after giving birth. But how do coffee and breastfeeding combine?
Generally speaking, enjoying a cup of coffee in the morning is totally fine when you are breastfeeding. Many people even hold that drinking a small amount of coffee during pregnancy is fine but the risk in drinking coffee while you are expecting lies in the fact that most people don't know exactly how much coffee there is in a cup, so they can easily exceed the recommended upper limit. So, when it comes to nursing and drinking coffee, studies have found that moms who were coffee drinkers while the baby was still in the womb are less likely to have trouble when it comes to breastfeeding "while caffeinated".
If you are wondering how on earth you can tell whether your baby is sensitive to caffeine, rest assured... their reaction is much the same as in adults who've had too much coffee. Your baby may have trouble getting to sleep, will be hyperactive and wide-eyed. Of course, babies who don't sleep tend to get cranky real bad. If this happens to you, don't despair. You can try cutting down on coffee before giving it up altogether. And if that still doesn't work, you can attempt again a few months later. Sometimes, coffee agrees with your baby much better once they get just a little older.
Having said all that, drinking excessive amounts of coffee or anything else with caffeine in it is never a healthy idea. And like all nursing mothers, you will probably make healthy living and eating a priority while your baby depends on you for her nutrition. That should include drinking coffee only in moderation.