Caffeine, Your Pregnancy and Yerba Maté
Updated: Apr 14, 2021
Coffee consumption is actually growing in the United States; Bloomberg reports that American consumption is expected to be up 1.5% this year alone! But as much as millions celebrate the energy boost they get from it, we know there are negative consequences to coffee consumption which include its impact on fertility.
When we talk about coffee negatively impacting fertility, we are talking about the caffeine in coffee. Although anything in moderation does not usually cause an issue, excessive use of caffeine (5-6 cups) has been shown to lower pregnancy rates for women using IVF.
According to Time Magazine, a 2002 study in human reproduction looked at 221 couples and concluded that failure to achieve a live birth after a cycle of in vitro fertilization (IVF) was associated with caffeine intake of more than 50 milligrams a day. Women who limited their caffeine intake to less than 50 milligrams had increased IVF pregnancy rates compared with women who consumed more (for reference, the average cup of home-brewed coffee has about 100 milligrams of caffeine).
It is generally accepted that women should decrease their caffeine intake while pregnant. But when it comes to Yerba Maté, science supports that the caffeine in Maté affects the body differently. In a Brazilian study published in the Journal of Nutrition in 2005, “Maté Drinking During Pregnancy and Risk of Preterm and Small for Gestational Birth,” it was concluded during a study of over 5000 women, over 70% of whom drunk Maté daily, that:
Prevalence of daily Maté drinking was high in pregnant women and, contrary to the hypothesis, no harmful effect on intrauterine growth or duration of pregnancy was detected. In fact, some of these women reported drinking up to 5 cups of Maté per day! I have heard it discussed that the caffeine in Maté is processed differently by the body.
And, although I am not certain of why or how that is, this study shows that the impact on fertility that we associate with coffee consumption simply doesn’t exist with Yerba Maté.
I’ve seen the first hand effects of Yerba Maté on a pregnancy; my daughter gave birth to her daughter 4 months ago and she drank Yerba Maté almost every day during her pregnancy. And, now that she’s a busy mom, Maté keeps her healthy, energized and focused on her baby girl in a way that coffee never could (or should), so I asked her to share her experience.
“I felt so tired and miserable throughout my first trimester. Unfortunately, I actually didn’t realize that Matè was safe to drink during pregnancy until about 9 weeks in. What a difference it made! I had energy again! I drank it every single day I could. Those days when I couldn’t get it on set or at work, I would substitute coffee and it really bogged me down. I just didn’t get that GOOD feeling I got with Matè. I began to realize how Matè was seriously changing my life. I was always in a good mood and being in a good mood really impacts your quality of life.My pregnancy had literally zero complications and I delivered a healthy baby at 8lbs, 3 ozs naturally. I continue to drink it daily while nursing and I feel almost prideful about giving the benefits of Oregon Yerba Matè to my baby! She’s so lucky to have them at such a young age.–H. Tighe
In a nutshell, if you’re pregnant or thinking of getting pregnant, do yourself a big favor and start drinking Yerba Maté instead of coffee. Not only will you feel better, but you’ll be supporting your baby’s development and lifelong health!
Yours in health!
Rachel Winkler, Owner
Oregon Yerba Maté