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5 tips to packing a healthy lunch box

5 Tips to Packing a Healthy Lunch Box
5th February 2018

Packing lunches for your toddlers is no easy task. It takes time and planning, and as many of you may have experienced, it often comes back home untouched.

Every parent knows that just because you pack it, doesn’t guarantee your kids will actually eat it.

To make this process easier for you and to improve the odds of your snacks being eaten, here are 5 tips to packing a healthy lunch box:

 

1. Get the kids involved

  • Take your children grocery shopping with you
  • Turn shopping into a fun activity, let them help you count, choose the fruits and vegetables. You can talk about what shapes, colors and tastes they love
  • Add their healthy favorites to the lunch box
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2. Keep it practical

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  • There are lots of lunch boxes in the market, try to find a thermal one that will help keep your child’s lunch warm
  • Buy lunch boxes with compartments – when children see a variety of food packed for them in different containers or compartments, it makes eating more fun!

3. Healthy Food, Fun Food

  • Use creative names; very few kids would get excited about pumpkin chia seed muffins … but they most certainly would get excited about “superhero muffins that gives you energy”
  • Use cookie cutters to shape their sliced bread sandwiches into fun shapes or characters. Children will look forward to finding surprises in their lunch boxes
  • Offer a variety of healthy and colorful snacks to your children. Try to avoid foods that are deep fried, and/or high in sugar and salt
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4. Food Pyramid choices

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  • Make sure your balanced diet includes all the food groups:
    • Fruits: apples, bananas, strawberries, pears, grapes (cut in half vertically, not horizontally)…
    • Vegetables: peppers, carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, broccoli…
    • Carbs: rice, pasta, noodles, bread…
    • Proteins: eggs, beans, stews, chicken, meat…
    • Dairy Products: milk, yogurt, cheese… 

Examples of a full healthy lunch box for snack and lunch includes:

  • For Morning Snack:
    • Apples, berries and grapes
    • Cheese sandwich with cucumber and tomatoes
  • For Lunch:
    • Spinach stew with meat and rice
  • For Afternoon Snack:
    • Carrot and pepper sticks with labneh dip

5. Stay Hydrated

  • Let your child choose his/her favorite bottle
  • Make sure it’s easy to open and close so that they’re able to drink on their own
  • Talk to them about the benefits of drinking lots of water
  • Children need to drink 6 to 8 cups of water a day. Ask your teacher to make sure the students in her class have easy access to their water bottles and are encouraged to drink between activities
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At Little Stream Nursery, we promote healthy eating habits and work closely with parents to make sure that their children are eating right. We follow a strict NO NUTS and NO CHOCOLATE policy so that every child in our care is safe, well fed, and taken care of. Healthy lunches and snacks are incredibly important for a child’s well-being and build a foundation for their relationship with food in the future. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to ask your pediatrician for guidance or advice. Happy eating!