During pregnancy, it is recommended to a pregnant woman not to eat any raw or semi-cooked food such as meat, fish, cold meats and certain types of cheese. And above all, smoking and drinking alcohol should be stopped.

Can you drink alcohol free beer when you're pregnant

Being pregnant can be a real dilemma for women who love good beer. However, in recent years, the brewing market has seen the development of a whole range of beers named "alcohol-free beer". There are many questions about this, including whether this type of beer avoids the dangers of alcohol during pregnancy.

The dangers of alcohol during pregnancy

Drinking alcohol during pregnancy can lead to complications and health problems for the fetus. Stunted growth, malformations, damage to the nervous system, and in the worst case Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, are all consequences that alcohol can cause.

Alcohol consumption during pregnancy is still one of the leading causes of non-genetic mental handicap in children. However, no study today allows to define the threshold of alcohol consumption below which the risks for the baby would be null. This is why the health authorities recommend, as a precaution, to refrain completely from drinking any alcoholic beverages during pregnancy.

For the good of their baby, mothers-to-be are therefore looking for alternatives to continue to enjoy the taste of beer without endangering the health of their little one. Alcohol-free beer is representative of a possible solution to this problem. However, to be sure that a pregnant woman can consume it, it must be ensured that alcohol-free beer does not contain any alcohol at all.

Is there alcohol in alcohol free beer ?

It’s important to understand the definitions and nuances of the term “alcohol-free beer”. It’s a beer with a low percentage of alcohol, for which the regulations of each country fix the maximum volume. Under English law, a beer can be called "alcohol-free beer" if its alcoholic strength is 0.05% or less. This is an insignificant amount, but it can still be present. Moreover, an alcohol-free beer is brewed in the traditional way and then de-alcoholised. It is therefore not surprising if some alcohol traces remain.

So a pregnant woman can't completely rely upon the name alcohol-free beer, because this type of beer may contain a small amount of alcohol in its composition.

Can you drink alcohol free beer during pregnancy and breastfeeding?

Drink alcohol free beer pregnant

Alcohol-free beer tastes similar to traditional beer and often has an alcohol content close to zero. However, there are several disadvantages for pregnant women:

  • First of all, even if a beer is labelled alcohol-free, it may contain a small percentage of alcohol, which doesn't rule out the danger to the foetus.
  • Many alcohol-free beer brewing techniques tend to degrade the taste. In order to improve the taste, brewers often add sugar to their mash, so that an alcohol-free beer contains on average twice as many carbohydrates as a traditional beer. This high level of glucose is particularly bad for pregnant women with gestational diabetes.

Therefore, for all these reasons, we don't recommend that pregnant women drink alcohol-free beer. In order to preserve the health of the baby, it is best to avoid drinking any type of beer throughout the pregnancy.

What about breastfeeding?

Unfortunately, the same applies to breastfeeding! Even though your baby has been born, it is still advisable not to drink alcohol if you are breastfeeding. This is because everything you drink contributes to the production of your breast milk and alcohol isn't the odd out one.

Moreover, alcohol can have adverse effects on your lactation and the development of your baby:

  • Decrease milk production
  • Change the taste of the milk
  • Decrease the quantity of milk the baby drinks
  • Problems with your baby's development
  • Impact on baby's sleep

In addition, although the baby receives only a small amount of alcohol, his body is more sensitive and has more difficulty in eliminating toxins. We are sure that you want the best for your baby, which is why we recommend that you do not drink alcohol (including alcohol-free beer) while breastfeeding.