Trying to conceive? Start with good nutrition

If you are planning a pregnancy, it is a very good idea to look after your nutrition as soon as possible.

Eating well before you get pregnant helps your body store up nutrients that are vital for a baby’s early development.

  • Start taking a supplement of 400 micrograms Folic Acid every day.
  • Eat a balanced diet with lots of fresh foods.
  • Try to have a healthy body mass index; being a healthy weight makes it easier to conceive and makes for a healthier pregnancy.
  • If you are underweight, eat more nourishing foods and be sure that you are not over-exercising to bring up your BMI (link to BMI calculator please) to within the healthy range of 18.5-25kg/m2. Aim to have a steady weight for about 3 months before you try to conceive.
  • If you are overweight, cut out foods high in fat & sugar eg crisps, sweets, fizzy drinks & takeaways, eat a regular balanced diet and increase your activity levels. Aim to lose at least 10% of your current weight before you try to conceive. Some areas offer a free dietitian-led 6 week weight management program.
  • Get advice from a dietitian or your doctor if you need it.
  • Talk to your doctor before trying to conceive if you have any health problems or conditions, especially diabetes or metabolic disorders. Some health conditions can reduce your fertility or affect your baby in the early weeks of pregnancy.

Main Clinical Nutrition & Dietetics page