A Healthy Lunch BoxLunch is an important meal for everyone. Many people like to prepare a lunch box for their children to take to school and lunch for themselves to take to work. Balance is the key to preparing a healthy lunch box. It is essential to choose a range of foods that will provide you with the energy you’ll need throughout the day.
Try the following to put together a healthy lunch box:
One portion of a wholegrain food such as wholemeal, rye or whole wheat bread, wholemeal pasta or wholemeal rice.
One portion of lean meat, chicken, tuna, egg or legumes.
Plenty of fruit and vegetables such as apples, fruit salad, tomatoes, carrot slices, and a small amount of raisins, dried apricots and dried figs.
One portion of milk or of a dairy product such as low-fat cheese or yogurt.
For a drink, choose water or semi-skimmed or low-fat milk (1 percent), ayran, or sugar-free fruit juice.
Healthy Lunch Box SuggestionsNutritional variety is essential to staying healthy. No one wants to eat the same sandwich every day. Healthy lunch box alternatives:
- Try different kinds of bread or other grains such as couscous, pasta or potato salads.
- Add an assortment of flavors to your lunch box with tomatoes, green and red peppers, carrots and cucumbers.
- Prepare your own fruit salad by chopping your favorite fruits into easy-to-eat sizes.
- Select from different kinds of drinks, including freshly squeezed homemade fruit juices, semi-skimmed milk, low-fat yogurt drinks and kefir.
Having a healthy lunch box does not mean giving up all your favorite foods. Foods like fruit cake or biscuits can be occasionally included for variety.
Food Safety and HygieneIf left out at room temperature, harmful bacteria may develop and foods may go bad. It’s hard for children to find a fridge to put their lunch box in at school. Therefore, food safety must be taken into consideration when preparing and storing a lunch box. Keep your lunch box fresh by doing the following:
Put frozen drinks in your lunch box next to the foods you’ve made to keep them cold.
Before both preparing and eating food, clean all surfaces and wash your hands.
If possible, keep your lunch in a fridge.
British Nutrition Foundation