Healthy lunchbox ideas

Children today spend at least seven hours a day at school.

School is physically and mentally challenging, thus good nutrition helps provide them with the energy and vitality to function effectively.

A healthy lunch keeps active kids alert and focused and gives them the nutrition they need.

No matter how healthy your child's lunchbox is, it won't provide any nutritional value if it doesn't get eaten.

If I could encourage parents to do one thing, it would be to take a little time to make some real food snacks for their children's lunchboxes.

Less packet food and more whole food makes a huge difference to kid's health.

1. Fruit kebabs. Use paddle pop sticks for younger children to avoid accidents with pointy skewers! If your kids are fussy, some fun shapes created with cookie cutters are a great idea.

2. Popcorn. It's a wholegrain and surprisingly healthy.

3. Trail mix. Have fun with the kids making up your own combos.

4. Who doesn't love a muffin? Make sure they are homemade though, to avoid all the nasties.

5. Apple slinkies. One of the best inventions ever! Why is fruit more appealing in a slinky shape?

6. Banana bread. Always a winner with my girls.

7. Boiled eggs. A perfect snack.

8. Leftovers from the previous night. These always gets the thumbs-up at my place, especially butter chicken and rice.

There's no need for your kids to open their lunchbox and be greeted by the sight of soggy sandwiches and processed foods. Take a bit of time and create some lunchbox envy.

Fatima Panju is a life coach with Chrysalis Coaching. Check out chrysaliscoaching.net.au.

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