Thursday, July 19th, 2012
Women who consume modest amounts of coffee while pregnant are not putting their children at risk for later hyperactivity issues due to the beverage’s caffeine content, a new Australian study has found. The Huffington Post reports:
Participants in the study (3,400 mothers) were asked how much coffee they consumed during pregnancy. When their children turned 5 or 6, the same women filled out questionnaires about their kids’ behavioral health -– teachers completed an identical survey. The authors concluded that mothers who drank caffeine during pregnancy did not put their kids at risk for “hyperactivity/inattention problems, emotional symptoms, conduct problems, peer relationship problems, overall problem behavior, or suboptimal prosocial behavior.”
This study follows a study published in the journal Pediatrics last April, which concluded that coffee intake during pregnancy does not lead to colic in infants.
Image: Pregnant woman drinking coffee, via Shutterstock
Monday, October 24th, 2011
Preliminary research into the effects of in-utero exposure to the chemical bisphenol-A (BPA) has correlated high levels of the compound with behavioral issues in 3-year-old girls, The Associated Press reports.
The study, published in the journal Pediatrics, found that preschool-aged girls whose mothers had high levels of BPA during pregnancy scored worse–though still within normal range–on behavioral measures including anxiety and hyperactivity. For every 10-fold increase in BPA in the mothers during pregnancy, the study found that girls scored 6 points worse on the behavioral questionnaire given at 3 years.
The results did not seem to be replicated in boys.
Nearly all Americans have measurable BPA levels in their bodies (the pregnant women were given urine tests). The chemical is found in some plastics and food can linings, though increasing numbers of companies are marketing “BPA-free” materials, especially in items intended for use by children.
Researchers called these results “preliminary” and called for further study of BPA’s effects on child health. This study was specifically faulted for not tracking other potential behavior-influencing factors, such as the mother’s prenatal eating habits.
Parents can consult the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services website for information on current research and advice on managing BPA levels in children.
(image via: http://onmybaby.com)