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Nov 21, 2015 10:41 AM EST

Pregnant women can indulge in moderate coffee drinking

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According to a new study, an occasional cup of coffee taken by pregnant women does not affect the intelligence or behavior of children in the long run, the Columbus dispatch reports.

The study, done by researchers at Nationwide Children's Hospital, was published in the American Journal of Epidemiology.

The study revealed that moderate caffeine intake during pregnancy does not lead to reduced IQ or increased behavioral problems later in childhood.

For the study, the researchers studied the blood samples of 2000 expectant mothers taken between 1959 and 1975.

"These results provide at least some reassurance that caffeine, at the amounts that most people would be drinking, is not likely to have an important impact on the development of their children," said Dr. Mark Klebanoff, principal investigator in the Center for Perinatal Research.

The results of the study showed there were no link found between a mother's caffeine intake and the development and behavior of their children at the age of 4 and 7, Klebanoff said.

The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists says that moderate caffeine consumption does not contribute to miscarriage or preterm birth.

Dr. Mona Prasad, a maternal and fetal medicine specialist for Mount Carmel Health System said that many pregnant women limit caffeine because of a perceived risk, but don't give it up completely.

"They don't want to admit to (consuming caffeine) necessarily," she said. "It still happens, but they're less likely to discuss it with their physicians."

Klebanoff said that pregnant women should indulge in moderate coffee drinking. Women should drink no more than about two 8-ounce cups of coffee per day, he said.

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