Important notice to customers — product packaging changesLearn More

NEW FOOD PACKAGING IN STORE NOW

From August 2018, customers will notice our rebranded food packaging start to appear on shelf in all major stockists.

  • CURRENT Packaging
  • new Packaging

We are excited to announce our new packaging will start to appear on shelf from August 2018. This transition to new packaging will occur over a number of months. During this time there will be a mix of current and new packaging on shelf.

There are no major changes to these products, in some instances there is a small name change or slight recipe improvement, see below for the full details.

Products purchased via the website will be delivered to customers in our old packaging until the end of October. From November, products ordered from the website will be delivered in the new packaging.

Please note, our Infant Formula packaging will not be rebranded until later in 2019.

For any questions, connect with our team of accredited practising Dietitians on +61 3 6332 9200

Product name changes

  • Cereal Name Changes
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Baby Rice
  • NEW Packaging Organic Rice with Prebiotic (GOS) Note: Our Baby Rice recipe has been upgraded to now include GOS Prebiotic
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Vanilla Rice Custard
  • NEW Packaging Organic Milk & Vanilla Baby Rice
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Apple & Cinnamon Porridge
  • NEW Packaging Organic Apple & Cinnamon Baby Porridge
  • Ready To Serve Name Changes
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Banana, Pear & Mango
  • New Packaging Organic Banana, Pear, Apple & Mango
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Mango, Blueberry & Apple
  • New Packaging Organic Blueberry, Mango & Apple
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Peach & Apple
  • New Packaging Organic Grape, Apple & Peach
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Pumpkin & Tomato Risotto
  • New Packaging Organic Pumpkin, Sweet Potato & Tomato
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Broccoli, Beef & Brown Rice
  • New Packaging Organic Beef & Vegetables
  • Note: We have also upgraded some of our RTS recipes to remove added sugars and to remove some of the more complex ingredients that are not required for young children such as Tamari.
  • RUSKS NAME CHANGES
  • CURRENT Packaging Organic Milk Rusks Toothiepegs
  • New Packaging Organic Milk Rusks
Home/Nutrition & Recipes/Articles/Nutrition for Mums/What to Eat During Pregnancy/A Guide To Good Eating During Pregnancy – First Trimester

A Guide To Good Eating During Pregnancy – First Trimester

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When it comes to food choices the early stages of pregnancy can be a challenging time. Nausea is common and many women lose their appetite. While you do not need extra calories there are a number of key nutrients to focus on which are crucial for maternal health and the health of a developing foetus.

1. Healthy eating, important nutrients and supplementation

Healthy eating

A healthy and balanced diet during your first trimester is particularly important to ensure you are consuming all the nutrients you and your growing baby need. A healthy and balanced diet includes three main meals and a range of healthy snacks where required. Extra snacking is not required during this period. A healthy diet includes:

  • Fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Wholegrains, cereals and bread
  • Dairy – milk or milk alternative that contains added calcium, cheese and yoghurt
  • Lean meat, poultry and fish and/or alternatives such as legumes and tofu

Supplementation

Supplementation is recommended in conjunction with a healthy and balanced diet to support the increased nutritional demands during pregnancy. A pregnancy supplement should be taken prior to pregnancy and for at least the first 3 months of pregnancy. Consult with your doctor to find the right supplement for you. You may have to correct any underlying nutritional deficiencies before conceiving such as Vitamin D, Calcium and Iron.

Important nutrients to consume pregnancy

There are several important nutrients that should be consumed during pregnancy through diet and supplementation. These include:

NutrientFunctionFoods
Omega 3 DHASupports normal development of a baby’s brain, nervous system and eyesightOily fish such as salmon, trout, and sardines
Folate and Folic acid (synthetic form of folate)Reduces the risk of neural tube defects in infants

Energy metabolism

Green leafy vegetables, wholegrain cereals, legumes
IronImportant for baby’s brain development and may support energy requirements during pregnancyRed meat, spinach, eggs, legumes
IodineEssential for a baby’s brain development, visual motor skills and hearingFish, seaweed and dairy products
Vitamin DSupports bone and teeth developmentFatty fish such as salmon, egg yolks and cheese
CholineSupports a baby’s brain and eye developmentEggs, poultry, fish and dairy
Calcium Bone health, heart and muscle functionMilk, cheese, yoghurt, broccoli, sesame seeds

Folate

An adequate intake of folate – found in leafy green vegetables, wholegrain cereals and legumes – is crucial during the early stages of pregnancy and assists in preventing neutral tube defects. Folate also helps cellular metabolism and red blood cell development which play key roles in energy metabolism. While pregnancy supplements often meet daily folate requirements in pregnancy, maintaining an optimal dietary intake should always be the primary goal. This is as we receive much more than just nutrients when we consume folate via natural foods. Even if you are not consuming a significant amount of food at this time, a serve of leafy green vegetables, an orange, some avocado and a fortified cereal will tick the box for dietary folate during the early stages of your pregnancy.

Iodine

Iodine is a nutrient less frequently spoken about – yet it is a nutrient that up to 50% of pregnant and breastfeeding women are deficient in. Iodine plays a crucial role in the functioning of the thyroid gland and low levels over time – from a low dietary intake – can result in fertility issues, mental retardation, lower infant IQ and miscarriage. For these reasons ensure both supplements and diet include iodine. Foods rich in iodine include seaweed, salmon, eggs, iodised salt with smaller amounts in milk and bread made using iodised salt.

Iron

Iron deficiency in women of child bearing age is common – with 20% of adult women reporting low iron or low iron stores. Low iron levels can leave you feeling exhausted and when coupled with the added pressures of pregnancy can exacerbate feelings of fatigue.

If you are a red meat eater – it is important to consume small servings of iron rich lean red meat at least 2-3 times per week. A small serve of lean mince, a lamb cutlet or a small piece of steak is all you need to ensure your rapidly increasing blood volume has access to adequate iron to transport oxygen around the body.

2. Healthy weight gain during pregnancy

Unless a woman is underweight at conception, it is recommended that no more than 2kg weight gain is achieved in the 1st trimester. Ideally, this gain should be attributable to fluid gain. Once you reach the 2nd – 3rd trimesters, you can expect to gain weight which will be dependent on your BMI before becoming pregnant. Below provides a guide on the recommendations for weight gain in pregnancy and the rate of weight gain recommended in the 2nd an 3rd trimesters based on pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI).

Source: NHMRC 2013 based on IOM 2009

3. How to manage nausea otherwise known as “Morning Sickness”

During the early weeks of pregnancy, 70-80% of women experience morning sickness. Of these women, half will experience vomiting and retching. Thinking about the food you’re putting into your body when you feel sick is no easy task, but what you eat can make a big difference to the way you feel. Some strategies to assist with nausea include:

  • Eat small meals frequently to help manage feelings of nausea
  • Try not to skip meals or go for long periods of time without eating
  • Milk based drinks, soups, frittatas and small amounts of minced meat are all nutrient rich ways to get your key nutrients and are relatively plain and simple foods
  • Avoid foods without a strong odour and flavour
  • Increase intake of Vitamin B6. Foods rich in Vitamin B6 include Fish, Milk, Eggs, Beef, Spinach and Carrot. Vitamin B6 coupled with ginger has shown to help reduce or relieve symptoms of nausea.

4. Foods to avoid during pregnancy

Pregnancy can be a challenging time when it comes to your nutrition. Not only are there many foods that you simply do not feel like eating—but there are also foods we should avoid both for the health of the mum-to-be and unborn baby. So, if you are newly pregnant, here are the foods you need to be careful with, or even avoid completely.

Sugars, Fats and Salt

  • It is recommended that during your pregnancy, to avoid foods that contain added sugar such as confectionery, cakes and soft drink. This will help to not only manage healthy weight gain, but will prevent consumption of less nutritious foods. The best sources of natural sugar include fresh fruit.
  • The best sources of fats include unsaturated fats from avocado, vegetable oils such as extra virgin olive oil, nuts, seeds and oily fish such as salmon. Try to avoid deep fried foods such as pastries, doughnuts and chips and opt for baked goods such as healthy fruit and nut muffins and homemade baked sweet potato chips.
  • Limit the amount of added salt you consume in your diet. Adding extra salt to the diet may impact on blood pressure. You can substitute salt for various herbs and spices which add a boost of flavour to your main meals.

Can I drink caffeine containing beverages?

Some pregnant women avoid coffee and tea completely, others may limit their intake and many do not feel like it at all. However, the key concern with drinking coffee during pregnancy is that coffee is a stimulant for your body. As is the case with many foods and drinks, a small amount is unlikely to be an issue, but significant amounts of coffee are not advised. A controlled caffeine intake during pregnancy is defined as one cup of coffee, along with a cup or two of tea each day. And, if you want to be particularly strict you can swap to decaf coffee and tea.

Can I eat fish?

During pregnancy, breastfeeding and even in early childhood, it is important to minimise foods which may be at risk of high mercury contamination such as fish. Despite some fish having higher levels of mercury, the Australian dietary guidelines recommend 2-3 serves (1 serve 150g) of any fish or seafood per week. During pregnancy and breastfeeding the following recommendations apply:

  • 2 – 3 serves per week of any fish and seafood not listed below or
  • 1 serve per week of Orange Roughy (Sea Perch) or Catfish and no other fish that week or
  • 1 serve per fortnight of Shark (Flake), Bluefin Tuna or Billfish (Swordfish / Broadbill and Marlin) and no other fish that fortnight

There is always a risk when eating raw fish, such as sashimi, that it may contain listeria. As listeria can cause miscarriages it is advised that pregnant women avoid all raw fish.

Can I eat salad?

While homemade fresh salad is no issue, caution should be taken with premade salads from supermarkets and food courts. These salads often sit out in unregulated temperatures for hours at a time. And, raw produce like this will have the risk of carrying listeria and is best avoided during pregnancy.

Can I eat cheese?

Any cheese that is unpasteurised (or uncooked) is a high-risk food for pregnant women. Such products including raw milk, goat’s cheese and soft cheese, like Brie, can contain bacteria that can be harmful during pregnancy. For this reason, these products are best avoided completely during pregnancy.

Can I eat leftover food?

For many of us, leftovers are enjoyed up to two or three days after meal preparation. During pregnancy, you need to be careful as the internal temperatures of these foods can cause the growth of harmful bacteria. For this reason, avoid reheating premade meal options altogether, especially when they are takeaway meals that have previously been reheated.

Summary: During the first trimester, a lot of changes begin to happen in the body which may impact on your energy levels and may result in some nausea. It is important to maintain a healthy diet and limit foods which may impact on the healthy of your growing baby. Ensure you seek medical advice around the best supplement to consume during your pregnancy to ensure you meet the nutritional needs for you and your baby.

General Tips:

  1. During your first trimester aim to have a healthy balanced meal that includes a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, dairy, meat or meat alternatives and wholegrains
  2. Managing nausea can be achieved by consuming smaller, frequent meals which don’t have a strong odour or taste
  3. Whilst a healthy and balanced meal will provide a range of necessary nutrients, a supplement is recommended at conception and for at least the first 3 months of your pregnancy
  4. Limit your consumption of added sugars, salts and saturated fats in your diet and opt for natural alternatives
  5. Try and avoid raw and unpasteurised foods and excessive fish consumption during your pregnancy

Disclaimer: The content of this document is solely for educational purposes and should not be substituted for medical advice. You are solely responsible for forming your own opinions and conclusions on such matters and for making your own independent assessment of the information. Please consult your doctor if you are concerned about your baby’s health.

About the author

Marisa Nastasi is an Accredited Practising Dietitian for Bellamy’s Organic. She specialises in children's nutrition and has recently completed further studies in paediatric dietetics. She has worked in the industry for 8 years and has developed a strong working knowledge on how good quality diets can benefit the health of children so that they can develop to their full potential.

Important Notice to Parents and Guardians

  • The World Health Organisation recommends that breastfeeding is best for your baby.
  • Having a balanced diet when breastfeeding is also important. Infant Formulas should only be used after you’ve sought advice from a doctor or health practitioner.
  • A decision not to breastfeed can be difficult to reverse and introducing partial bottle feeding may reduce the supply of breast milk. It is also wise to consider the cost of infant formula.
  • If you use infant formula, all preparation and feeding instructions must be followed as per the manufacturer’s instructions. This is important for your baby’s health.