You send your children off to school thinking that the school has their best interest in heart- but when it comes to lunch time, the food they are offered actually really hurts them. I’ll explain why it’s so important to pack your child’s lunch and the easiest way to do it. Stay tuned!
I know first hand how crazy life can be trying to juggle everything as a mom. Mornings and evenings are often chaotic and you’re just flying by the seat of your pants trying to get things done.
So much to do, so little time.
Trying to plan for the next day seems like an extra task that would be nice, but not absolutely necessary.
But when it comes to planning for your child, it is probably one of the most important things you can do. Specifically when it comes to packing their lunch for school.
Here are 3 reasons why packing your child’s lunch is critical for good health
1. Researches found a link between eating school lunch and childhood obesity
A study published by the New York Times identified a link between children who regularly eat school lunches and childhood obesity.
Studying over 1,000 six-graders, the results showed that children who eat school lunch on a regular basis were more than 29% more likely to be obese than children who packed lunch.
It is largely due to the fact that the food offered in schools are high-calorie, low-nutrient foods because they are cheaper. The hamburgers, pizza, french fries, and milk are strategically placed right in front of them and the fruits and vegetables are made harder to find.
I don’t know about you but 29% makes me uncomfortable! I don’t want my kids eating heavy greasy foods for lunch. In a better world they should be learning the importance of nutrition and be offered healthy choices at lunch. Children need to be eating a nutrient rich lunch that will fuel their body and brain to help them excel.
2. Home-made lunches are nutritious
Only you can provide a wholesome nutritious lunch for your child.
A packed lunch will ensure that they are eating healthier alternatives than what is being provided to them. Make sure to include a majority of whole foods and less meat and dairy will provide them with the energy and nourishment that their growing-selves need to get them through their day healthily!
Not only will they be eating a great lunch but it was made special by mom or dad with lots of love. What’s better than that!
3. Packing your child’s will establish healthy eating for the future
Teaching your children the importance of nutrition and eating healthy at a young age will help them to make good food choices all the way into adulthood. What happens when your children grow up and become more independent? You want them to be the best equipped they can be right!? Of course we do, that’s why starting them off on a good foot is so important!
Teach them all you can about the value of health and nutrition, and then do even better by showing them! You know the saying “kids don’t do as we say, they do as we do.” You are the best example your child has, so do your best, because this one really counts!
But what if I don’t have time?
You always have time to create a nutritious lunch for your kids. It takes much less time than you think and having pre-planned lunch ideas that you can throw together quickly and easily makes it a breeze.
You want to know my secret!?
I pack lunches while I am cooking dinner. Sometimes one or two days ahead of time if I’m feeling it. It makes preparing for the next day so easy since I am already in the kitchen preparing dinner.
Peanut butter and jelly sandwich
Cooked pasta with veggies
Grilled vegan cheese with soup
Rice salad (rice with veggies)
Vegan chicken nuggets
Incorporate plenty of fruits and vegetables and encourage flavored water instead of juice. If you need help making great plant based meals for your kids check out our FREE More Plants on the Plate guide
Be sure to give your children a few options to choose from. It will make them feel like they were involved in the decision and enjoy it even more.
In this article we discussed why packing your child’s lunch is so very important, how to find the time, and plenty of home-made lunch ideas.