A new school year is right around the corner and will be here before you know it. With its arrival also comes the challenge to have your kids continue the healthy eating habits you practice at home. Packing a great tasting school lunch is an excellent way to ensure that your kids are getting nutritious foods that have been prepared according to your healthy standards.
Healthy eating for kids doesn’t have to mean a battle of wills or generate full-scale combat, complete with hair pulling, eye gouging, and gnashing of teeth. By using these simple tips and suggestions, you can send your kids to school secure that your lunch efforts won’t end up in file thirteen.
Use Their Favorites
No one knows better than you do what your kids will eat or what they like to eat. Use that knowledge to create healthy lunch alternatives that they will truly enjoy. Does your daughter love to eat crunchy cucumbers or other raw veggies dipped in dressing? Stock her pack with snack size favorites, along with wheat crackers and protein rich cheeses and yogurt.
On the other hand, does your son ONLY eat chicken? Try sending chicken wraps or fun-size sandwiches using meat that you’ve prepared the day before. Throw in his favorite nutrient rich fruits either whole, or peeled and cut into handy pieces to create a balanced meal. (If you do cut the fruit, toss the pieces in a little fresh lemon juice to prevent browning.) Lunch is a wonderful time to utilize leftover meats that have been cooked at home without excess fats or processing preservatives.
Make It Fun!
Cutting sandwiches into fun shapes is a great start, but kids love to “fix their own”; why not try including the ingredients for wraps or cracker stacks, along with tangy sauces for spreading or dipping? This provides kids the chance to make their own decisions and create their own flavor combinations.
Adding notes or a daily trivia question tied to a sugar free mint or another similar treat is an interesting way to end the meal. You could award weekly prizes for correct answers, or other fun ideas.
Try New Things
Often kids will ask for the same things repeatedly, but lunch is a fantastic opportunity to introduce healthy eating for kids that include a variety of tastes. Maybe each week or every other day you could add in a small container of flavorful bean salad or fruit salsa with tortilla chips. Try adding in a small amount of an alternative meat choice or an exotic dipping sauce; you may be pleasantly surprised by the results.
Healthy eating for kids doesn’t just mean packing a nutritious lunch, it also means getting your kids to look forward to what they will have, and then actually eating it. By trying new things, you’ll be able to promote healthy eating habits while engaging their curiosity and sense of adventure.
Making the choice to prepare daily lunches for your kids is a worthwhile commitment to your healthy living lifestyle. Your 360 Cookware provides the tools you need to cook healthy meals for your family and develop school lunches that promote healthy eating for kids as well.