Avoid School Lunch Fails!
By Sara Butler
When you’re a parent, you have your work cut out for you in more ways than one. One of the biggest hurdles to get over is the school lunch. Mornings are usually crazy, and that ensuing craziness doesn’t lend itself to carefully crafted artisanal lunches that have the best of each food group to nourish your child! Lack of inspiration and time can be a real lunchbox nutritional killer, so we’ve come up with a few tips to help you up your school lunch game.
Make a Plan
A great way to avoid crunch time in the morning is to plan ahead. Discuss the lunch plan the night before or even sit down at the beginning of the week and talk it through for the whole week. This will provide a healthier lunch for your child full of foods they actually want to eat and will save you the stress of early morning lunch packing.
Spread the Wealth
Many times, a child’s lunch will include several servings of foods from the same food group. Of course, you pack the string cheese and yogurt (along with a milk!) because you know they’ll eat it, but you should rethink your plan here. Overloading of a specific food group means you’re leaving other options out.
The solution for this is to aim for balance. Send just one serving of dairy along with some whole grain crackers or chopped up vegetables. Use lunch as an opportunity to introduce them to a wider variety of foods during the week.
Watch the Temperature
No one wants to eat cold macaroni and cheese or a hot cup of mandarin oranges -- you child included. Take a few easy steps to keep the cold foods cold and the hot foods hot. It’ll help the food to taste better and keep your little one safe from foodborne illness. Invest in a high-quality icepack or thermos to keep your child’s lunch at the right temperature.
Don’t Overdo the Carbohydrates!
Another pitfall of many children’s lunchboxes is carbohydrate overload. Kids love carbs -- and it’s hard to blame them. But resist the temptation to load them up. Try to substitute fresh vegetables or fruit for carbs where you can. Perhaps carrot sticks or cut up peppers they can dip instead of chips!
Your child's lunch can be a great source of healthy foods -- so work to find things they'll enjoy together and plan it out!
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in South Jordan, Utah.