Essential information to rememberDrink often, especially water, to stay well hydrated. For an original touch, feel free to add some flavouring.

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During pregnancy, your fluid needs increase by about 50%. Drink often, especially water, to stay well hydrated. Proper hydration helps your intestines do their job and reduces the risk of constipation, fatigue, and headaches.

Water and nutritious drinks

Water is the ideal drink when you’re thirsty. It’s easier to make it your drink of choice when you have it close at hand, e.g., in a water bottle you always carry with you. For an original touch, feel free to add some fruit, herbs or cucumber slices to give it some flavour.

You can also opt for nutritious beverages such as milk or fortified soy beverages. Not only do they help you stay hydrated, they also provide nutrients like protein, calcium, and vitamin D.

Nutritious drinks like these are practical when you’re not feeling very hungry. You can also use them to make smoothies. Just add yogurt and some fruit.

Coffee and caffeinated beverages

Information to which special attention should be paid

Energy drinks are not recommended during pregnancy. They can contain as much caffeine as coffee, and sometimes a lot more.

They also contain products such as ginseng and taurine, which have not been proven safe for pregnant women.

During pregnancy, you are advised not to exceed 300 mg of caffeine per day. That means no more than two cups of coffee (one cup equals 237 ml or 8 oz.) or three espressos of approximatively 30 ml/1 oz. each, provided you don’t get any caffeine from other sources. Caffeine is also found in tea, iced coffee and tea, chocolate, and some soft drinks and medications.

Decaffeinated products are safe for consumption during pregnancy.

For more information, go to www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/pregnancy/caffeine.html.

Herbal teas

Information to which special attention should be paid

Some mixed teas and herbal teas contain ingredients that are not recommended during pregnancy. Pay special attention to the ingredients when you buy such products.

Certain plant-based products can have a negative effect on pregnant women, by triggering contractions, for example. For others, there isn’t enough scientific evidence to determine whether they are safe for pregnant women.

According to Health Canada, the following herbal teas are generally safe when consumed in moderation (no more than two or three cups a day): orange or other citrus peel, ginger and rosehip.

Vary your herbal teas rather than drinking the same kind every day. Another tasty option is to add lemon juice or ginger slices to hot water.

Artificial sweeteners

To reduce their sugar intake, some people prefer to use artificial sweeteners or opt for “diet” foods and drinks containing artificial sweeteners, such as certain yogurts, beverages, jams, and chewing gum.

Sweeteners (e.g. aspartame, sucralose, sorbitol) found in processed foods or used for cooking are considered safe by Health Canada, even during pregnancy.

Cyclamate (e.g. Sugar Twin brand), a sweetener sold only in individual packets, should not be used unless recommended by a doctor.

Nutrients: Components of food, including vitamins, minerals, proteins, sugars, and fats.