By Walpole Pediatric Associates
February 20, 2018
Category: Pediatric Nutrition
Are you always packing your kid’s lunchbox with the same old boring foods? When it comes to your child’s school life, you may be concerned with your child’s eating habits. In order to help your child eat better and feel better, your pediatrician offers helpful tips for packing healthy lunches for your kids to take to school. Now is the time to branch out with new ingredients for healthy foods so that your children always eat well at lunch—help them be the envy of every child’s lunch.
By preparing lunch at home for your child, it helps to ensure that your child eats food with nutrients that are crucial to growing normally and thriving, mentally as well as physically. When it comes to packing your child’s next lunch, your pediatrician urges you to remember that variety is key.
Your child’s lunch should contain a variety of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and heart-healthy fat. Some examples of foods that are rich in these nutrients and ideal for home-packed school lunches include:
- Two to three ounces of lean protein for muscle and tissue development. This can include chicken, turkey or tuna on a whole grain mini-bagel. Pair this with chickpeas or a hardboiled egg and your child will receive the lean protein they need at lunch.
- Heart healthy oils for heart and brain health might include two tablespoons of natural peanut butter on several whole grain crackers.
- Fruits such as grapes, mandarin oranges, pears and berries provide fiber and micronutrients. You can also include vegetables such as broccoli or grape tomatoes, or even whole grains, including whole grain bread, bagels, pasta, quinoa and brown rice.
- Calcium rich food is very important for bone development. These foods include low-fat cheese or six to eight ounces of low fat milk or yogurt.
And for a drink, don’t forget the water! Your pediatrician places a strong emphasis on including water because proper hydration is important to your child’s health. Water is also a much better alternative to sodas or fruit drinks.
What your child eats at lunch as well as breakfast and dinner can influence his or her ability to earn good grades and helps in reducing obesity. Talk to your pediatrician for more information on how you can pack a better lunch for your child to improve their health and overall well-being.