There are only a few days left until a new school year begins, and it is also the opportunity to start new habits, including eating better. Children can also learn if we know how to put together a healthy lunch box.
But what exactly does a healthy lunch box have to carry? To begin with, it must be very balanced with nutritious foods and, of course, that they taste delicious so that our children will enjoy eating them.
Here we leave you a practical guide to build a healthy lunch box for your children. Take note!
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Water is a basic element in the body; only the composition of the brain is 75% water, so doctors always recommend drinking it. In addition, children are more physically active than an adult and therefore tend to dehydrate faster.
Avoid adding sweetened waters, sodas or juices, as they generally contain high amounts of sugar and eventually lead to overweight. To make fun waters, you can freeze fruit like strawberries or grapes and put them in the water bottle, so at recess it will be fresh and flavored.
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Quality protein: calcium and iron
Lunch is ideal to include protein that can be of animal or vegetable origin; the first is found in eggs, poultry, fish, meat and dairy products, and the second in nuts, mushrooms and legumes.
These foods are also high in iron and in dairy you will find the most important source of calcium.
Protein is responsible for muscle building, while dairy provides the necessary calcium to create strong bones and prevent fractures, as well as to create reserves of this element for adulthood.
During the school stage, especially in preschool and primary school, iron should not be lacking in the daily diet of children, mainly because it prevents anemia but also because it helps to strengthen the brain.
To include protein, calcium and iron, you can put turkey ham rolls, pieces of panela cheese, or make a sandwich with whole wheat bread and change the content every day.
For example, start with turkey ham one day, follow the next with egg with mushrooms or tuna with a little mayonnaise and vegetables or beans with panela cheese.
Always try to keep meat products low in fat and sodium, so avoid cold cuts because they contain these elements in high quantity.
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Colorful fruits and vegetables
The best sugar that your children can consume is the one that comes from fruits that, in addition to being sweet, provide vitamins A, C and E, which help strengthen the immune system and prevent diseases, as well as fiber that helps digestion.
The great advantage of the variety of fruits is that you can choose a different one for each day and thus vary the content of the lunch box.
A practical solution is to choose grapes, strawberries, apples, pears, peaches, Dominican bananas or guavas because they do not require refrigeration, and you will also save time by not peeling or chopping them.
Remember to include seasonal fruit, which in addition to being cheaper is coupled to the type of climate.
For hot days, you can also put cucumber, jicama and carrot combined with lemon and a little chili pepper. So that the rush doesn’t wreak havoc on your lunchbox, try to chop the ingredients a day before and store them in the refrigerator in sealed bags so they stay fresh.
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Be careful with the sweets!
Make sure the lunch box is made up mostly of the foods that we have mentioned before and if your child asks for a treat, give him options such as fruit or a combination of peanuts and blueberries in a small portion.
If the strategies do not work, look for the mini versions of the product that you ask for, but if there are only large packages, ration in small portions for the week.
Let your little one know that he is not going to consume these types of treats on a daily basis, and never use them as a reward, because that will encourage him to ask for them more often.
If you are going to include a type of cereal in your lunch box, choose whole grain or whole grain bread or crackers because they contain vitamin B, some minerals such as iron, magnesium and fiber; the latter helps to feel full.
He prefers cookies without additional cream, which in addition to being high in sugar are also high in fat.
Work together with your kids to create the lunch box menu. Planning it in advance will help you have everything at hand, it can also be a very fun moment of conviviality.
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