Pregnant Women Can't Eat Cold Cuts, But a Gin & Tonic Is OK?

Pregnant womanIf you're pregnant, you shouldn't drink, right?

Some people will say that a little won't hurt you or your baby, but no one is going to tell you it might be a good thing if you throw back a couple.

Until now ...

A new study found children of women who had one or two drinks per week performed just as well on cognitive tests when they were 5 as their peers whose mothers didn't drink in pregnancy.

And in some areas -- they even did even better. It also found that children of "light drinkers" were 30 percent less likely to have social or emotional difficulties than those whose mothers didn't drink at all.



The study's authors are clear that it doesn't mean pregnant women should start drinking, and they found children of women who had more than two drinks a week performed worse on tests.

But there seems to be a fine line between what's potentially harmful and helpful, and this study blurs that line a bit ... especially for those who have problems with alcohol.

When a door is shut firmly, you can't just nudge it open. But when it has been opened, even the tiniest crack, it's easy to just push right through.

According to the March of Dimes, already 1 in 12 women drink some alcohol during pregnancy, and 1 in 30 report binge drinking (more than five drinks per occasion). It doesn't seem women need any more motivation to imbibe.

And like with all the many, many studies out there, there's always another one to come along and contradict it. The danger is in women clinging to the ones they like best and using them to justify their actions: "I can't eat that cold ham sandwich, but could you please make me a martini?"

Then there's the whole matter of what constitutes a drink. There are some pretty big wine glasses out there, and many other factors like how much you weigh and what's actually in your glass that provide further room for justifications and boundaries being pushed.

While it's a decision each woman has to make for herself and her baby, it would still seem that erring on the side of caution and not drinking alcohol is the safest option.

Does this study make you reconsider your stance on pregnancy and alcohol intake?

Image via spaceodissey/Flickr

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