Healthy living

Food safety for breastfeeding

Breastfeeding women should eat a balanced and varied diet in line with the Australian Dietary Guidelines (external site).

Pregnant and breastfeeding women should avoid fish that may contain high levels of mercury. 

Food Standards Australia New Zealand recommend consuming no more than: 

  • one serve (100g cooked) per fortnight of shark/flake, marlin or broadbill/ swordfish, and no other fish that fortnight; 
  • or one serve (100g cooked) per week of orange roughy (deep sea perch) or catfish and no other fish that week.

Breastfeeding women can eat the foods they avoided because of listeria risk during pregnancy. 

The risk of transmitting listeria to a newborn baby from breastfeeding is extremely low and outweighed by the significant benefits of breastfeeding.

If you are ill or taking any medications talk to your health professional. 

Where to get help


Information reproduced with the permission of the NSW Food Authority

This publication is provided for education and information purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical care. Information about a therapy, service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace advice from your healthcare professional. Readers should note that over time currency and completeness of the information may change. All users should seek advice from a qualified healthcare professional for a diagnosis and answers to their medical questions.

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