Did you know the following assumed “healthy” lunch box items actually contains loads of sugar, processed ingredients and often preservatives!? All of which can influence your child’s behaviour!
Here are the top 10 not so healthy lunch box items to avoid and find nourishing alternatives for:
1. Juice poppers
2. Flavoured milk
3. Muesli bars
4. LCM Bars and other sugar-filled snack bars
5. White bread
6. Flavoured yoghurt
7. Biscuits (even savoury ones can contain sugar)
9. Store bought banana bread
10. Processed cheese sticks
There’s no doubt that the food your child eats can influence their energy levels, how well they sleep, their moods, ability to concentrate and more. It’s important to make sure that we feed our kids healthy, nutritious meals and snacks that help them be their best selves without compromising their potential.
Food can influence your energy levels, how you sleep, your moods and your ability to concentrate.
– Live Love Nourish Tweet
So what do you pack for healthy school lunches?
Coming up with healthy ideas of what to pack in your children’s lunch box can seem daunting, especially if you might be used to the ‘grab and go’ packaged items you find at supermarkets.
However, I hope this article helps to give you some hints and tips to nourish your family!
Follow these six easy steps to a nourishing lunch box:
1. Get an awesome lunchbox! What’s inside your kids lunch will never be motivating to eat unless they love their lunchbox! Get your child to help choose a lunchbox that they love and label with their name. I love the back to school lunch box range from Biome Eco Stores.
2. Pick a main nourishing lunch box item that takes the place of a processed sandwich. Such as:
- Home-made Quinoa Sushi or Nori Wraps (sushi wrappers with protein, salad or vegetable fillings)
- Egg Rolls
- Frittata, egg muffins or fritters
- Patties such as veggie patties, tuna patties or salmon rissoles
- Healthy sandwiches using grain free bread or nut free bread
- Leftovers! Maybe your child might enjoy leftovers such as quinoa fried rice, leftover roast veggies, stir-fry or casserole
- Meatballs or chicken poppers (mini chicken mince balls) or rissoles
- Coconut wraps
- Taco or burrito bowl (a bowl of taco/burrito fillings such as cooked mince/diced chicken with salad greens, avocado and homemade salsa)
3. Add a piece of fruit (preferably low sugar fruits) such as:
- Strawberries, Blueberries, Raspberries or Blackberries
- Kiwi Fruit
- Honeydew melon
4. Add a savoury snack such as:
- Cold chicken drumsticks
- Cold lamb cutlets
- Guacamole with veggie sticks
- Hummus with veggie sticks
- Grain free crackers
- Homemade kale chips
- Homemade root vegetable crisps
- Fresh veggies cut into fun shapes such as cucumber, capsicum or carrot
- Boiled egg
- Avocado and tuna mash
- Cucumber sandwiches (cucumber rounds with filling of avocado, mashed salmon and avocado or mashed boiled egg with avocado)
- Homemade trail mix (minimising dried fruit or make sure you preservative free or organic dried fruit)
5. For an extra item add one a healthy “sweet treat” such as:
(These ideas also make great items for afternoon tea!)
- Pancakes/Pikelets made with almond flour or coconut flour such as these Coconut Pancakes with Sugar Free Strawberry Jam
- Coconut Banana Mini Muffins
- Healthy Sugar Free Banana Bread
- Apple Nut Butter Sandwiches (Slices of apple with 100% nut spread (or sunflower seed spread for a nut free option)
- Gluten Free Cookies
- Sugar Free Choc-Coconut Balls
- Homemade “bliss balls” using fresh dates, nuts or seeds and coconut
- Chia Seed Pods
6. Fluid! Making sure your child is hydrated is paramount to their vitality. Remember dehydration can lead to poor concentration, sleepiness and irritability. Make sure they have a water bootle they love to encourage them to drink lots of water throughout the day. I love the gorgeous kids range of BPA free water bottles at Biome Eco Stores.
Here are some healthy fluids to keep your child hydrated. Of course number one is water!
- Water! Water! Water!
- 100% Coconut water popper
- Unsweetened almond milk or make your own
- Unsweetened coconut milk or make your own
Fuelling your kids with healthy, whole food options is one of the greatest influences we can have on their little bodies.
Your added bonus! Feeding your kids with nutrient-rich, real food not only will support your child’s health and how they behave but will most likely save you money! Buying packaged food is expensive let alone the potential medical yearly medical bills that eating healthy might just keep down ?
Watch out for our kid-friendly recipes coming soon in the February 2015 edition of Yum Gluten Free Magazine! Did someone say healthy pizza shapes!?
Please share your healthy, gluten free, dairy free and sugar free lunch box ideas below in our comments!
A Nourished Body = A Nourished Mind
– Live Love Nourish Tweet