While red wine has numerous health benefits, consumption of this drink during pregnancy has been debated. One school of thought says a small quantity of red wine is good for pregnant women, while the other disagrees. Opinions are divided. Let it be known, exposure to large quantities of alcohol can increase the risk of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders in children. This article discusses the pros and cons of red wine consumption while pregnant.
Conventional wisdom tells us a woman should abstain from alcohol when she is pregnant. However, not many women around the world seek refuge in conventional wisdom. While manybelieve that red wine in moderation does not pose any dangers at childbirth, many others are of the opinion consuming wine or any other alcoholic drink during pregnancy can harm health of the unborn baby. There is no doubt, if a woman consumes large amounts of red wine during pregnancy the fetus is at risk. However, there is no conclusive evidence that consumption of red wine or any other form of alcohol in moderation or low levels can put a woman’s unborn child in harm’s way.
Drinking Red Wine while pregnant- Pros and Cons
The problem with any alcoholic drink is drawing the line. A moderate amount of alcohol would vary in accordance with every person. A safe level of alcohol during pregnancy is not known, however the global unanimous voice through studies and research suggests, consuming two small glasses of red wine in a week poses no harm to the baby. Every person that consumes alcohol say’s “I know my limit”. However a few drinks down the line, spelling ’limit’ becomes a task in itself. Alcohol has the ability to trigger feel-good responses, which is why consumption increases, and this, during pregnancy is a big risk. Hence, every pregnant woman should take a decision in regard with wine consumption keeping their unborn child in mind. In the U.S. you seldom come across pregnant women having alcohol. In many other countries low levels of red wine consumption while pregnant is considered safe. Many pregnant women consume small amounts of wine because of the various health benefits associated with it. Furthermore, wine helps calm nerves and anxiety, which is why pregnant women consume the drink; to relax during the stressful stages of pregnancy. It is also believed that drinking red wine in small quantities…
- Helps stop early contractions
- Decreases behavioral problems in children
- Increases the survival rate of babies in case of preterm labor
The medical fraternity does not approve of the above benefits of red wine. Though there is no conclusive evidence that consuming low levels or moderate levels of red wine while pregnant is harmful, it is important that you give close thought at the risks involved to the unborn baby.
Red Wine and FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome)
Risk of acquiring FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome) is high if a woman while pregnant consumes large quantities of red wine or any other alcoholic drink. FAS can lead to complexities at a late stage of pregnancy. Facial deformities, development problems and central nervous system complications can take place. Research reveals anxiety, hyperactivity, impulse, behavioral disorders and attention span in kids have been related to FAS.
What needs to be considered is the misunderstood meaning of the word ‘harm’. The word harm is used in a blanket statement that warns women. In regard with pregnancy the word ‘harm’ can be used in various scenarios. There is a difference between being misinformed and being cautioned. Every region, culture, tries to spell guidelines for pregnant women. Why wine? For instance pregnant women are asked to refrain from dairy products, eggs, fish, raw oysters, meat chocolate, suntan lotion, avoid climbing stairs, and tons of other things; failure to do so can cause harm. The fact remains that it is easier to hand over a pregnant woman a list of do’s and don’ts than actually informing and educating a pregnant woman on’ why take precautionary measures’? This kind of information passed on can stem from being misinformed. Spreading a false sense of security is definitely not good for pregnant women. A cautionary warning is issued to stay away from something to ensure the unborn baby is not at risk. Exposure to heavy drinking while pregnant does pose the potential risk of FASDs (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders), however no study has been able to link or correlate birth defects to moderate drinking of red wine.