School lunches are the beginning of the end of nutrition for our kids. Once they start eating at school, we have less control of what they eat. The government tries to help with required side dishes and limiting calories and whatever else they're trying to do, thinking they're helping. But kids will eat what they want to eat. Healthy choices start at home.
These old sayings and quotes are honest to goodness truths...
An apple a day keeps the doctor away.
You are what you eat.
If you can’t pronounce it, don’t eat it.
True healthcare reform starts in your kitchen, not in Washington (source)
Eat to live, not live to eat. - Socrates (source)
Garbage in garbage out. - George Fuechsel (source)
The only way to keep your health is to eat what you don't want, drink what you don't like, and do what you'd rather not. - Mark Twain (from brainy quotes)
In general, mankind, since the improvement of cookery, eats twice as much as nature requires. - Ben Franklin (from brainy quotes)
The doctor of the future will no longer treat the human frame with drugs, but rather will cure and prevent disease with nutrition. - Thomas Edison (source)
Today, more than 95% of all chronic disease is caused by food choice, toxic food ingredients, nutritional deficiencies and lack of physical exercise. - Mike Adams (source)
To get our kids to eat better in life, we must do it ourselves at home first with as much natural foods as possible and keep the artificial, processed foods to a minimum. I'm totally guilty of taking advantage of time-saving pre-packaged goodies to pack lunches with. But I try to balance those with more healthy options.
So here are my tips for packing healthy lunches:
- nature has plenty of pre-packaged, serving-size foods, take advantage of them!
- and for the bigger or harder to manage fruits and veg, pre-cut and prepackage them yourself - this is also great for grabbing a quick snack!
- try to keep a ratio of at least 4 out of 5 healthy choices
- the main dish - pbj or pbb(anana) sandwiches on white wheat bread are my boys' staples
- at least one fresh fruit or veg - my bigger boys need more food, so they get two or three
- a healthy side - nuts, granola bars, pretzels, whole grain crackers
- a low-cal drink - they make low-cal juice pouches, and sometimes water is what they choose - everyone should drink more water!
- a sweet - this is my clinker, but as long as you have all the rest and you don't go overboard, everyone deserves a little dessert, and there are healthy choices here too.