A packed lunch box for the day is the most efficient and economical way to get those nutrients kids need in their body to get through the school day. Without a healthy and tasty lunch, your child’s brain is going to shut off after midday and miss out on important learning opportunities during the afternoon. While kids need a healthy lunch box, they also need enjoyable and appealing food and snacks in their lunchbox so that they are actually inclined to eat. Remember that to an eight year old, an apple is the most boring and undesirable thing.
So there needs to be a balance between nutrition, and appetite appeal for your children. The problem with foods that appeal to young kids is that they often come jam-packed with sugar and unnecessary calories. While you want your kids to eat through the school day, you don’t want the consuming excess calories. With these handy tips, you can reduce calories in your kid’s lunchbox while still making sure they enjoy the food in there.
- Pack some carbohydrates for energy, such as a wholegrain bread sandwich or crackers, which will leave your child’s belly feeling fuller for longer and less likely to crave other calories.
- Ensure there is some fruit in there for fibre. Present the fruit in fun ways, such as an apple slinky or fruit stick kebabs so that your child will look forward to eating it.
- Give your kid some protein with vegetables, either raw or cooked. Sometimes carrot and celery sticks can be a really great snack for kids because they are easy to eat and hassle free. Combined with a low calorie dip such as tzatziki or hummus, this is the perfect thing for kids to nibble on at morning tea without loading up on unhealthy calories.
- Put in a treat snack, such as a chocolate bar or something sweet. Something small like this, while it does have many calories, is ok during the school day. Kids burn a lot of calories from all the energy they use in the classroom and playground, so a small tasty treat is fine. Just remember it needs to be in moderation with fruit and vegetables.
- Include a fruit juice or milk drink, but not fizzy soft drink. The sugars in fruit juice are healthy calories that your child will burn through easily. The sugar is necessary to keep blood sugar levels in check through the day and stop your child from feeling dizzy or faint. Why not making your juice at home by useing your fruits which you didn’t eat yesterday? Also remember to ensure your child has a water bottle, and should be refilling it at least two or three times a day to stay hydrated.