"Healthy eating from the start!"

A health promotion programme for pregnant and breastfeeding women and children up to 3 years of age

Partners: Federal Ministry of Health, Main Association of Austrian Social Security Institutions, Austrian Agency for Health and Food Safety (AGES)


A well balanced diet and good eating habits are of great importance during pregnancy, lactation and the early years of life due to their health-promoting and preventive potentials. The increasing prevalence of nutrition- and lifestyle-associated diseases, especially overweight and obesity in childhood and adolescence highlight the necessity of target-group-specific and environment-oriented measures as well as creating an environment where the target finds appropriate conditions to live healthily. For this purpose, tailored actions and activities are suggested to be implemented on three levels: macro (social and legal regulations), meso (setting, environment and communities) and micro (families and individuals).

Aims and methods

This health promotion programme aims to improve the dietary habits as well as the food environment of pregnant and breastfeeding women and children up to the age of 3 years. Therefore, an Austrian wide action plan was designed based on national and international models of good practice and appropriate intervention strategies were formed for the implementation of health-promoting measures. The latest scientific knowledge in the field of infant/child nutrition and nutrition during pregnancy and lactation are provided for the public and experts and put into practice in a target-group-specific way. In ongoing efforts, programme leaders are collating and synthesising the expert knowledge of relevant stakeholders, and are strengthening the information exchange between national and international projects.

Examples for implementation

Scientific research/publications for experts:

  • Systematic review on health effects of cow´s milk consumption in infants up to 3 years of age
  • Evaluation of the labelling of complementary food products
  • Austrian guidelines on complementary feeding
  • Guidelines on nutrition of 1- to 3-year-old toddlers

Publications for the target-groups:

  • Brochure on complementary feeding intended for parents and other carers, also available in Turkish and Bosnian-Croatian-Serb language
  • Information graphics on infant nutrition in the first year of life


  • Train the trainer programmes (dieticians, nutritionists, doctors, midwives)
  • Workshops on nutrition in pregnancy and lactation and workshops on complementary feeding - implemented successfully Austrian wide.
    Here you can find detailed information on the cost-free workshops (in German language) as well as current workshop dates (in all Austrian states).


For further information, the main programme website (in German language) offers a broad insight into the ongoing proceedings of the programme and lists all programme-related publications.

Contact details:

Birgit Dieminger, PhD (strategic project leader)

Phone: +43 (0)5 0555-25731

Melanie Bruckmüller, MSc (operative project leader)

Phone: +43 (0)5 0555-25736

E-Mail: team@richtigessenvonanfangan.at