Healthy Lunch Ideas For Kids: How to pack a bento box
How to Pack a Healthy Lunch (for Adults)
Our modern, fast-paced lifestyle leaves us with little time to eat, much less prepare nutritious food for ourselves. Consequently, we often find ourselves grabbing things on the go without giving much thought to whether the food even contains nutrients (nachos, anyone?). Eating poorly can have negative affects not only your own individual health but also on the health of our society. For example, the growing trend of obesity has much to do with a lack of proper nutrition and a diet of fattening foods such as what you would find at a fast food restaurant. Yet when you start to pack a healthy lunch, you will feel much more energetic for rest of the day, have a positive attitude, and decrease your chances of diseases due to poor nutrition. How can you stay healthy, remain professionally active, and set a good example for your kids? How can you make sure that every lunch you eat is healthy? Follow these steps!
Find out which foods are healthy.For example, whole wheat bread is better than white bread because processing white bread requires removing the natural nutrients contained in wheat. Whole wheat products are also better for your digestion.
- The definition of nutritious food is: Food that is a significant source of fiber, vitamins, and (preferably) organic substances. Organic and whole foods are more nutritious than processed foods. Processed foods have been stripped of their nutrients, leaving them unhealthy to eat.
Make a list of healthy foods versus unhealthy foods.You might want to put this on your refrigerator as a reminder.
- Avoid food with saturated or trans fats. Low-sodium foods are also more healthy. Look for . Eating less sugar is also important.
Shop for food at stores that give you healthy alternatives.This may be:
- a store solely devoted to whole foods
- a local produce market (You can support local farmers, too!)
- certain sections in your supermarket that stock dairy, whole grain/wheat products, and organic fruit and vegetables.
Keep your kitchen stocked with staples such as whole grain bread, brown rice, grains, butter, low-fat cheese, lean lunch meat (ham, turkey, roast beef), fruit, vegetables, nuts (if you are not allergic), low-fat yogurt, juice, and filtered water.
- You can find a helpful shopping checklist .
Vary the kinds of lunches you pack on a daily basis so that you don’t get bored.Change things up by packing a sandwich one day, a salad on another day, or even leftovers from last night’s dinner (be sure that it is healthy).
If you like to end your lunch with something sweet, include items such as low-fat yogurt, fruit rolls, or trail mix.For some healthy alternatives to sugary delights, go to .
Make sure you have reusable containers and lunch bags on hand.You might also want to purchase insulated bags so that your lunch stays fresh.
If you are not used to bringing your own lunch, schedule a regular time in your daily routine to make your meal ahead of time.Treat it like a ritual. This will help you get into the habit of bringing your own healthy lunch. Soon you will find yourself uninterested in going out for a more expensive lunch or eating less healthy food.
- Some people do this right after dinner or before bed. Morning people might want to prepare things during or after morning coffee or tea.
If you have children, have them prepare lunch with you.This way they will "learn by doing," be able to bring a nutritious lunch to school, and get into the habit of eating well, too.
- If you stray from your healthy diet and succumb to a fast-food burger, fried food, or an ice cream sundae, do not worry too much. Just start again the next day. Everyone weakens once in a while, and you are probably no exception.
- When shopping for food, be sure to read the labels carefully. You never know about the food’s nutritious value until you do a “label check.” It is important to know what is and isn’t healthy for you. If you don’t know, how do you know whether you’re packing a healthy lunch? Look for the calorie count per serving size, the amount of sodium, whether the food item contains saturated or trans fats, and if the food contains chemicals.
- Often you will see “all natural” written on a package or box of food. When you read the label, however, you might find cane sugar as one of the main ingredients. Just because sugar is “natural” does not mean it is healthy. Looks can be deceiving!
Video: Motivation Minute - How to Pack a Healthy Lunch
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