Who needs some Lunchbox Lessons?
Mom and Dad, do you feel like you are running a restaurant? Are your kids constantly demanding to eat? School may not be in session but that doesn’t mean kids can’t learn some ways to make their own healthy lunches.
It doesn’t to be this hard. I am going to take you through 4 lunchbox lessons that will focus on building a healthy lunch box for kids.
Armed with new ideas, your kids will be making their own lunches and maybe even yours.
Print out Lunchbox Lessons for Kids to make lunchbox ideas for kids even easier!
Lunchbox Lesson 1: Pack Up Protein
Protein is a macronutrient that our bodies need. Your body needs it for your muscles, bones, blood, cartilage, skin, hormones, enzymes, and vitamins. Iron, found in protein foods, is essential in blood production. Other important vitamins and minerals found in protein foods are B vitamins, Vitamin E, zinc, and magnesium.
What foods contain protein?
- Meats, such as beef, poultry, pork
- Dairy Products such as milk, cheese and yogurt
- Soy Products
How much protein do kids need?
Lunchbox Lesson 2: Fuel Up with Whole Grains
Whole grains are a source of carbohydrates that includes the entire grain seed. Carbohydrates are important to fuel our brains and body. Fueling kids with whole grains gives them energy, fiber, and health benefits. The fiber they contain helps people stay regular and reduce their risk of constipation. It may also help reduce the risk for heart disease and can aid in weight management.
What counts as a serving of whole grains?
- 1 slice of bread
- 5-7 crackers
- 1/2 cup cooked oatmeal
- 1 mini bagel
- 3 cups of popcorn, popped
- 1 small tortilla
- 1/2 cup rice
- 1 (4 inch) pancake
- 1/2 English muffin
How much do children need?
Lunchbox Lesson 3: Load Up with Fruits and Vegetables
Make half of the lunchbox fruits and vegetables that your child likes!
Why should we eat more fruits and vegetables?
- Filled with vitamins and minerals
- Helps protect against disease
- Contains fiber that can help keep you full
- Low in calories
- Provides texture and variety
How many fruits and vegetables do kids need a day?
Ages 2-8: 1 – 1.5 cups a day
Ages 9-18: 1.5-2 cups a day
Ages 2-8: 1 – 1.5 cups a day
Ages 9-18: 2-3 cups a day
Lunchbox Lesson 4: Fill Up with Fluids
Did you know kids may not be performing their best because they are not adequately hydrated?
Water is needed by the body for temperature regulation, waste, metabolism, and circulation.
A Harvard study published in the American Journal of Public Health found that more than half of children and adolescents are not adequately hydrated. A result of poor hydration can cognitively and physically impact students.
- Reduced cognitive functioning / inability to concentrate
- Poor physical performance
How much fluid do kids need?
Need some more inspiration? Don’t miss my 40+ Books That Teach Kids About Food.
Author: Betsy Ramirez
Betsy is a registered dietitian/nutritionist, homeschool mom, & fairy tale junkie, who loves getting crafty. Being on my bike and lifting weights are my therapy. Thinking outside the box is my jam!