Diet Soda and Pregnancy Don't Mix

Sasha Brown-Worsham

Researchers in Europe have found a link between the amount of diet soda a woman drinks and an increased risk of premature birth.

The study suggests that sweeteners, such as aspartame, can carry dangers for the unborn child.

Some British public health experts are now advising expectant mothers to avoid food and drink containing the chemicals. 

It's rare for a mother-to-be to give birth before 37 weeks of a normal pregnancy.

But the EU research suggests this low risk was increased by 38 percent if the woman was drinking, on average, one can of diet drink a day.

This study is a little odd to me because, well, duh.

It isn't that I knew the specifics -- that artificial sweeteners use methanol, a known nerve toxin, which can form formic acid in the body -- I just happened to know that the combination of caffeine (in many diet sodas) and artificial sweetener is bad in pregnancy. 

I didn't know that it caused premature birth; I just knew if it wasn't natural and wasn't recommended for people who aren't pregnant, then it definitely wasn't a great plan for someone carrying a vulnerable fetus.

Do you find this news surprising?

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