Packing Healthy Lunches
School lunches are notorious for high calorie and fat contents. A better solution for many people is to bring a lunch from home. If you know the right things to pack, these can be nutritious and delicious! Here are a few tips to get you started:
Say No to Soda and Energy Drinks
Soda and energy drinks are tasty, but filled with sugar and empty calories. They give you a short burst of energy followed by mid-afternoon energy crash. Go with water or 100% fruit juice instead.
Balance the Food Groups
Try to have a little something from each of the main food groups in your lunch. Breads and cereals are good sources of carbohydrates and meat and nuts contain a lot of protein. Add fruit, veggies, and dairy for a boost of vitamins and minerals.
Watch Portion Sizes
Nutrition labels only show the calories and nutrients for one serving of food, usually much less than what it in the container. Do the math and find out how much you are really putting into your lunchbox.
Make Easy Switches
Little changes can have a big effect on the nutritional value of your lunch. Replace white bread with whole wheat in your sandwich. Pack light or low-fat yogurt instead of the regular version. Yes, they taste a little different, but the nutritional benefits are worth it.
Be Smart about Dessert
Everyone wants a treat to look forward to during lunch! You can have one, just make sure it’s small and low-calorie. A piece of fun-size Halloween candy or a pack of fruit gummies are good examples. Cookies, brownies, and other sugar rich snacks shouldn’t be brought on a regular basis.