Can Drinking Soda During Pregnancy Increase Your Child’s Chance of Obesity?

Can Drinking Soda During Pregnancy Increase Your Child’s Chance of Obesity?

For many expecting mothers, pregnancy can come with a lot of questions. As a mom-to-be, you want to make sure that you are doing everything that you can to keep yourself and your growing baby as healthy as possible. One of the many concerns that expecting moms tend to have during this time has to do with their diet and what they are putting in their bodies during pregnancy.

However, as most pregnant women know, pregnancy often comes with major food cravings, especially for anything sugary and sweet. But will giving in to sweet cravings such as sugar harm your growing baby?

Studies are suggesting that drinking soda during pregnancy may in fact put children at risk for being overweight.

This eye-opening new study looked at moms who drank at least two sweet drinks a day in their second trimester of pregnancy. The research found that the participating 8-year-olds were about two pounds heavier if their moms drank two or more sugar-sweetened beverages per day during this time in their pregnancy.

Researchers found no link between the mother’s beverage intake in the first trimester and their child’s weight. According to the study, the second-trimester is when fetal fat accumulates.

The study went on to find that it was the mother’s consumption of sugary drinks that made the difference in the child’s weight, not the child’s diet.

A similar study was done on mothers with gestational diabetes. It found that mothers with this condition who drank artificially sweetened sugary drinks once a day nearly doubled their child’s risk of becoming obese by the age of seven. Mothers with this condition who drank only water during their pregnancy, decreased their chances of their child being obese by 17 percent.

The study also found that sugar-free, artificially sweetened beverages were no better for women than sugar drinks. In addition to increasing the child’s chances of obesity later on, the children in this study were also 60 percent more likely to have a high birth weight, compared to women who drank only water.

There is still a lot of follow-ups to be done on these studies, but the early parallels should shine a light on a serious topic for pregnant women. If you are expecting, make sure that you take the time to pay close attention to what you are putting in your body. While sugary drinks and sodas may satisfy those pregnancy cravings in the moment, they may be doing far more harm to your child than you realized.

Here at Continuum, we are always happy to help all of our expecting mothers get the insight they need to stay as healthy as possible all pregnancy long.

I always tell parents, the first rule of my office,  “no mom-guilt allowed!” so this study shows what we already know, gestational diabetes and other conditions a fetus is exposed to in the womb, can have effects on a child later in years. If you cant cut the Cokes, talk to your OB about what your risks specifically are, if this study is relevant to your pregnancy specifically, and what other alternatives may help you with the sugar cravings.