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"Street of the Good Kids" translated from French. All kids are good kids.

The Essentials On How To Pack a Healthy School Lunch

Mary Brighton is participating in a four-week dietetic training program until mid February 2013. She hopes to complete the French government’s dietetic requirements to have the right to practice the dietetic profession in France. Wish her luck! In the meantime, over the next month she brings you highlights of articles published during the first year of BrightonYourHealth. Happy reading and please feel free to add your opinion in the “Leave a Reply” section below the article.
Another Pink Bento for Hubby

What a beautiful and healthy lunch!

My favorite essentials for a healthy packed school lunch

1.  Variety –  Different foods = Different vitamins and minerals.  Putting different foods in your kid’s packed lunches ensures that they have a better chance to meet their vitamin and mineral requirements.  Planning out lunches with a weekly menu may help make this job easier.

2.  Whole grains –Substituting whole grain breads, brown rice and whole wheat pasta for simple grains is a easy way to increase the amount of fiber in your child’s diet.

3.  Fresh fruit and vegetables –Providing fresh fruit and/or vegetables in each packed lunch helps to meet the “5 a Day” fruit and vegetable goal.

4.  Food Safety-A good insulated lunchbox is important to keep food at the right temperature.  If your child’s packed lunch will stay outside the refrigerator for extended periods of time, the foods inside the lunchbox should be a good temperature, with cold foods staying cold and hot foods staying hot.  This may mean putting a blue ice in the lunchbox or hot foods in a special insulated container.

5.  Taste- Providing healthy foods that your kids will eat is just as important as selecting healthy choices.  Involve your children in what foods to pack in their lunches by asking them what foods they like to eat.  If you put new foods in the lunchbox inquire if your kids actually ate them.

6.  Water to drink Water is the best drink for kid, but if your child refuses to drink water, other drink options are 100% juice or milk. Here is an article on why water for kids is the best drink for their overall health.

7.  Healthy desserts and snacks-Save the chips and packaged sugary desserts for other occasions. Provide your kids with healthy alternatives such as a granola bars, yogurt, applesauce, or even just a small piece of good chocolate (like the French do!).

8.  Keeping close to the earth as possible- Avoid over-processed foods and prepackaged lunch items such as lunchables.  Provide foods that come as close to the earth as possible, like a piece of fresh fruit instead of low sugared applesauce.

Bon Appetit!

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One Response to The Essentials On How To Pack a Healthy School Lunch

  1. ~ The Lady in Red ~ February 12, 2013 at 14:43 #

    Manda loves bento boxes for lunch! Ever since she was a toddler she always preferred different finger foods over a sandwich. Lunch definitely doesn’t mean just packing a sandwich. Sometimes I’ll give her leftover cut up chicken, a sliced hard boiled egg, and some celery sticks with cream cheese on the side, or some portable fruit like grapes or blueberries. She thinks her lunch if “fun” this way and likes the variety in a little box.

    To keep things like yogurt or other perishables cool, I take a rubber band and actually wrap it around both the ice pack and the food item that must be kept cold – together – so they are “attached” in her insulated lunch bag. It helps for a few hours until she gets to eat.

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