Everyone remembers the mystery cafeteria food from elementary and middle school, the different colors of glop supposed to represent different food groups; green for vegetables, pink for deserts. Of course, cafeterias today are now serving pizza and cake, maybe a couple carrots. The alternative choice, for those trying to keep their slender shape by not eating all that, is the vending machine, filled with chips and candy, a child's dream meal. The money you give your kids for lunch, magically turns into snacks and junk, making them often struggle with their health and weight. This is why giving your child a packed lunch, one good enough to make your child eat it rather than trade it off, is so important.
Creating a delicious packed lunched is an art. There are three important parts of the packed meal:
These three elements are the formula to a perfect lunch for your child. Your child expects and wants these things; it is your job to them as healthy as possible, giving your child a leg up in their lives.
The main course is typically a sandwich. Sandwiches are as healthy as you make them, but they can get boring with the same old peanut butter and jelly blueprint. Use whole wheat bread for a change, use cheese and meat, and buy some low-fat mayonnaise. Instead of a sandwich why not pack a hard boiled egg for protein, some string cheese, and some rice cakes. By surprising your child, you can make their lunch an exciting part of their day that they look forward to.
Usually, chips make up the second aspect of lunch. Part of the reason kids like chips is because they are crunchy and fun to eat. However, you can compete with the fun and crunchy food by adding some of your own. Some good substitutes include baked chips, dried banana, strawberry, or apple chips, low calorie popcorn, pretzels, or carrots. Give your kid something to get their teeth into.
And last, the most delicious (in the eyes of most children) is the sweet desert that they have been waiting for and which will get them through the day. Some good alternatives to candy are low-fat puddings and yogurt, pineapple chunks, a couple mini-candy bars, or graham crackers.
If you would like more information on packing a health lunch for your child or would like more ways to prepare healthy meals for your family, visit www.cdkitchen.com today!