A controversial new book is giving pregnant moms a lot more leeway when it comes to what they can indulge in while they’re expecting, and it’s causing quite a stir.
Emily Oster is not a physician, but she is a mom to 2-year-old daughter Penelope, an economist, and an associate professor at the University of Chicago Business School. Oster thought some of the guidelines given to mothers-to-be were questionable, and she wanted to further explore some of the claims about what women are typically told to avoid while pregnant.
During the course of her research, she contends that some of the items doctors usually tell pregnant women to avoid while pregnant — such as deli meats, coffee, and wine — have either inconclusive or almost no evidence of ill health effects to expecting women.
According to Oster, research supports that it’s ok to indulge in light drinking, which consists of up to two glasses of wine a week in the first trimester and up to a glass a day in the second and third trimesters. Also back on the menu: caffeine. Oster’s book says three to four cups per day are also fine.
In an interview with Today, Oster says that her book was never meant to dispense medical advice, and that it’s merely an attempt to clear up some of the confusing and often conflicting information widely available about what’s okay to eat or drink and what’s not during pregnancy.
Not surprisingly, there’s already been a lot of backlash over Oster’s theories. Melanie Abrahams, a blogger and editor for The Parents Perspective, called the book’s opinions “dangerous,” and referred to Oster’s book as “biased.”
Before using Oster’s book as a license to indulge, we suggest checking in with your doctor regarding the best guidelines for a healthy pregnancy.