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Are Energy Drinks Like Red Bull Safe When Breastfeeding?

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You did it! You got through the 40 body-draining weeks of pregnancy! Congratulations! 

Wait, what do you mean you are still tired? Surely carrying the baby is the hard part? 

Wrong!

You may hear the advice “sleep when the baby sleeps” and that is all well and good but we know that a mom’s job is never complete and that’s why we struggle to keep going even when our bodies are telling us to rest!

When we are this tired we often turn to quick fixes. Something that will boost our performance, make our tiredness more bearable, a magic potion that could give us wings? 

Are Energy Drinks Safe During Pregnancy?

Energy drinks seem to be a quick fix to gain more energy and feel more alert so you can carry out tedious daily tasks without feeling completely wiped out. But the worry many moms have when breastfeeding is that can the ingredients in an energy drink be harmful to their baby? 

If you are currently breastfeeding or have done so in the past you will understand exactly how draining it can be for the mom. It is like a zap and the energy that you built up and stored when you were asleep is drained like a flat battery.

Ingredients in energy drinks aren’t thought to pose too much risk during pregnancy as long as they are not consumed in large amounts.

However, when you are pregnant it is recommended that you do not consume more than 200mg of caffeine a day. It is a shock to the system when you realize how little this is compared to what you are used to consuming on a daily basis before you became pregnant. 

In one can of Red Bull, you would be consuming 80mg of caffeine. Pretty high for a small can right?

Also, the other ingredients like sugar, etc. are thought to be dangerous if a mom’s glucose levels were too high. Too much glucose can cause a spike in blood sugar which can cause its own complications.

This is why generally medical experts will always advise a mom to be to find an alternative drink other than energy drinks. 

Are you still thinking of reaching for the can?

Let’s look at the ingredients in energy drinks and whether they will have an effect while nursing. 

Ingredients In Energy Drinks

A nursing mother has to be mindful about what they are consuming because what nutrients they are putting into their bodies will end up in their breast milk and essentially transferred to their feeding baby. 

Caffeine

Consuming caffeine while nursing is deemed to be fairly common, providing it is in moderate amounts. The average mom can consume a cup of coffee whilst breastfeeding and not think twice about it.

Although it is advised that only 200mg should be consumed in one day. Too much caffeine in your diet could have side effects on your baby. They could become extra fuzzy, not sleep very well and have an increased heart rate.

If you notice that your baby has any of these symptoms or seems jittery at all then you may need to look at the caffeine in your diet or eliminate it altogether. 

In the first three months of age, it is thought that caffeine can last for up to 120 hours in your baby’s system. This alters as your baby grows so it is very important that you keep an eye on the first few months of nursing. 

Sugar

Carbonated energy drinks and sports drinks have a fairly high sugar content and many use artificial sweeteners. Consuming too many drinks high in sugar can make a nursing mom gain weight.

At present, there is no known side effect from the excess sugars that pass through breast milk. 

Taurine

This ingredient is an amino acid that the body already naturally produces and is already present in breast milk. It is used in energy drinks to boost the powers of caffeine.

If your baby is getting what they need from nursing and you are consuming more energy drinks, then it could have an impact on the baby’s metabolism, kidney function, and growth. 

Alternative Ways To Boost Energy Levels

Woman eating healthy dinner from lunch box

After looking at the research behind energy drinks while breastfeeding, it is fairly clear that even though they are safe in moderation, it is probably best not to consume them at all.

You can look at some alternatives to help with the fatigue that lends itself to becoming a new nursing mom. 

Coffee

A cup of coffee includes small amounts of caffeine that can help take the edge off when having a tired spell.

They do not contain as high levels of caffeine as there are in energy drinks it could become a better alternative but still, give you the kick you need. Check out what you can drink at Starbucks safely.

Balanced Diet

Yes, unfortunately, it is the one thing we all know that helps and works but we all struggle to maintain. Eating a healthy diet full of soups and natural juices will naturally boost the immune system and keep you hydrated – which is essential when nursing!

Rest up

Just like those early first trimester days where your body was running its own marathon, you were probably given the advice to rest and take time for yourself.

This is the same momma! You are producing milk to sustain a human! Taking regular power naps can help make you feel well-rested. 

The Final Thought

I sincerely hope that this article has shed some light on whether or not you want to consume energy drinks while nursing.

If in doubt always seek medical advice and remember it is your choice. People can advise you of the best course of action to take for you and your baby but you have to be happy!

If you still have questions with regard to breastfeeding why not check out our Breastfeeding: Ultimate Guide.

Medical Disclaimer. All content and media on the MomInformed Website is created and published online for informational purposes only. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice and should not be relied on as health or personal advice.

Hi, I'm Emma and I'm a mother to 5 beautiful children aged from 1 to 21 years old- life is hectic! I have learned so much along the way, not only from my own children but also through my professional life. In my positions as a Childminder and Teaching Assistant, I have studied Child Development and The Early Years Developing Practice. I wish to share all of this knowledge and help you with your own parenting journey!