It’s the beginning of a new school year and as we all know, it is quite a challenge to get back to the healthy eating program, especially when it comes to the kids, but we have a solution!
Have a look at our Creative Lunchbox ideas, compiled by Litchi Living. Healthy and exciting foods for everyday lunch. Yummy for kids (and grown-ups).
make sure you use different kinds of breads or wraps or tortillas or crackers. Try to make a sandwich with one slice brown bread and one slice white bread to teach them different tastes and textures. Keep one drawer in the kitchen for funny boxes, strings, stickers, labels to write messages on. When you need to wrap a sandwich everything is close by. You can even wrap your lunchbox the day before to save time.
Carbohydrate is needed on time for the brain and in the correct portion:
Kids need to eat carbohydrates every 2-3 hours to keep the blood glucose in the brain at a constant level. Examples of carbohydrates are avocado, pasta, bread, nuts, yoghurt, fruit and flavoured milk drinks. Meat and vegetables alone will deprive the brain of glucose and lower brain potential and output. Symptoms of a low blood glucose is headache, tiredness, dizziness and lack of concentration. Keep a carbohydrate portion for first break and second break. What out for an overload of carbohydrates in a cold drink or juice taken with bread at the same time!
Aim for 5 fruits and vegetables: Use ready mixed flapjack packets and add grated apples or carrots. Waffles can also be made from that mix and add leftover butternut to add nutrients and fibre. Spinach works very well in a chocolate brownie and you can add nuts to increase digestion time and therefore slow down the release of glucose to the brain. Add liquidised vegetables (mushrooms, peppers, carrots, onions and celery) to meatballs to give picky eaters their fair share of vegetables. Add oats in the meat for fibre!
Increase the fibre: Fibre slows down the digestive process and makes you feel satisfied and slows down the release of glucose from the meal to the brain. Add oat bran to banana bread and replace some of the oil in your cup cake recipe with liquidised butter beans to save on fats and increase the fibre. You can also add beetroot for colour in the cupcakes and for the boys use blueberries to colour in their healthy cup cake.Add popcorn for a snack or dried fruit squares instead of sweets.
Use fish often Fishfinger salad with cooked fishfingers on cucumber strips with lettuce and homemade tartare sauce on the side made with gherkins, white yoghurt and mayonnaise . Choose fish fingers high in Omega 3 to improve brain function. You can also make fish pizzas with pilchards in tomato sauce ( an excellent source of Omega 3) Take ready rolled dough and spread with minced pilchards and sauce. Add onions and green pepper and mushrooms and top with cheese. You can flavour with oreganum and even sneak in liquidised lentils on the base for more fibre! Roll up and cut in slices from one end of the roll. Bake at 180 for 10-15min
Use milk products in the lunch box: Containers with readymade custard or milk drinks can be frozen and taken out for second break. The calcium and low fat of all milk products can only benefit your child’s health. Foil packed cheese wedges with melba toast can also contribute to the milk ration
Use sugar sparingly: Rather give dried fruit sticks or fruit squares that do contain fibre as well as little sugar. Breakfast bars can also be a good idea but just check for the saturated fat ( <7g/100g) and total carbohydrates per portion ( not more than 30g ) What about bite size energy bars?
Drink water: Rather give a bottle of frozen water to school or dilute juice and cold drink 1:3 with water
Use meat products and legumes regularly in the lunchbox: Look for the packets of chicken with mayo available on the shelf or the packets of tuna that can be opened after school with crackers if the child needs to stay behind for sport.
Children can give their input Discuss the coming week with them and see what kind of lunch will work for each day. Listen to their preferences as well. Check out websites like Pinterest that give fabulous ideas on how to put everything together. You can even look at certain take away meals. Just make sure on the specific website about the fat and carbohydrate content. This will ensure quick, easy, brain friendly and moneywise lunchboxes for