It’s often easier to pack a healthy lunch than it is to find a restaurant that serves one. It’s also far more budget friendly. For parents, a healthy lunch isn’t always found in the school cafeteria, regardless of what the new directive is. It’s important to have the proper nutrition to create a healthy eating plan. Having all the macronutrients, like protein, healthy fat, and complex carbohydrates, such as fruit and vegetables, plus water for hydration rather than juice boxes, cola or fruit drinks that only add calories.
A quality protein should be at the top of the list.
Protein is one of the body’s building blocks for bones, cartilage, skin, blood and muscle tissue. It’s also part of the chemical processes that keep your body functioning properly. It doesn’t matter whether you’re a vegan or omnivore, protein should be part of your lunch. Vegetarian source of protein include nuts, tofu, lentils and nut butters, while other sources include cheese, hard boiled eggs, lean meat and even ham. Protein fills you up and keeps your feeling full longer.
Healthy fat won’t make you fat.
There’s become a hysteria surrounding fat and it’s wrong. Not all fat is bad. Transfat is bad, but you definitely need other types of fat. Healthy fat is necessary to absorb fat soluble vitamins, like K, D, E and A. It comes from food like avocado, whole eggs, salmon, pumpkin seeds and cheese. Not only does fat make you feel full, it’s necessary for proper brain, nerve and heart functioning. It also helps build cells throughout the entire body.
Don’t worry about carbs, just include the right type.
If you’re counting carbs, you know that you need a certain amount to be healthy. They should come from complex carbohydrates, not simple ones that includes sugar and fructose and put on pounds. Complex carbs contain fiber that keep you feeling fuller longer. They include fruits, vegetables, whole grain, beans and even sweet potatoes. You need carbs for quicker energy.
- Create a veggie wrap with a slice of cheese for a quick lunch that doesn’t require utensils to eat. Roll-ups, like a chicken avocado salad roll-up are good for anyone’s lunch, child or adult.
- You need to include fruits and vegetables in your lunch to make sure you get at least five to thirteen servings each day, based on weight and age.
- Whether you’re making lunch for yourself or your child, there’s nothing better than a mini quiche muffin that has vegetables or other creative way to add more vegetables to the mix.
- As a time saver, you can make a week’s worth of lunches and freeze them or put leftovers from dinners in trays for lunch. Take them out of the freezer the morning you’ll use them. It’s best for people who have a microwave available to reheat the meal.