Get your children involved by letting them help make school lunches!
We all know that lunch and recess are the best time of day for kids during school. However, the cafeteria at school can be a trap for bad calories.
Teach your kids good eating habits by getting them involved with packing lunches.
I got a chance to chat with nutrition expert Mitzi Dulan. Mitzi is a mother of two and understands the challenges that we face as mothers and caregivers to our children. Here are her top five tips for making great lunches that kids will eat instead of trading or tossing.
1. Drink up
Mitzi recommends avoiding high calorie drinks to pack in the lunchbox. She recommends 1% organic milk or even chocolate milk. Water is always a good option and flavored waters can offer up some fun too.
2. Team Up
It's a good idea to get your kids involved with the experience. Take them with you to the grocery store and have them pick out the fruits or vegetables they'd like to add to their lunches. Ownership can help create confidence and will help them understand how to create a healthy lunch. This can also lead to having them get involved in meal planning for the entire family.
3. Plan Ahead
Mitzi says that morning isn't the best time for packing lunches. With the rush of morning dress up, clean up, and gathering homework, there's not enough time to prepare food. If lunches are made the night before, it will save time and frustration for everyone. Also, make sure your cabinets are stocked with healthy options.
4. Pre-Mixed Snacks
Good snacks can include dried fruits and nuts that kids can put together themselves. Almonds are a good choice because they provide fiber along with a source of plant protein.
5. Whole Wheat Wonder
Mitzi is quite passionate about giving kids whole wheat bread from the start instead of white. Using 100 percent whole wheat sandwich bread is a good source of whole grains and fiber, which children and adults need. She also explains that telling children better messaging like, "These foods will help you run fast, get stronger and provide energy" instead of telling them, "It's good for you," makes a difference as well.
About Mitzi Dulan
Mitzi has inspired millions to lose weight and get fit. She is currently the team nutritionist for the Kansas City Royals Baseball Team and co-author of "The All-Pro Diet: Lose Fat, Build Muscle, and Live Like a Champion" with NFL future Hall-of-Famer Tony Gonzalez. Together, they're helping people learn how to eat clean to get lean.
Don't let your kids develop bad eating habits early on. It's hard to break a bad habit once it's started. Teach them to grow up to be healthy-minded adults from a young age!