Lunchbox advice for pupils and college students

Health, Beauty and Lifestyle with Denise McNamara

As that nation’s offspring prepare to head back to routine, it’s an apt time of the year to focus on how to help create nutritious and enjoyable lunchboxes. Joana da Silva, Chief Specialist in Nutrition at Safefood, emphasises the positive impact of well-balanced school lunches on children’s concentration and learning abilities.

Here she shares Safefood’s top five tips for preparing healthy and exciting lunchboxes this school year:

  1. Include all the food groups

Aim to incorporate a wide variety of foods from each food group. Ensure your child’s lunch consists of fruits and vegetables, foods like bread, pasta, and rice, proteins such as meat, beans, pulses, fish, and eggs, and dairy products like milk, yogurt, and cheese. This diversity promotes a balanced diet and establishes healthy eating habits for life.

  1. Vary the kinds of bread

Try experimenting with different types of bread. Instead of using plain sliced bread every day, introduce brown bread, pittas, bagels, or wraps for added variety. Keeping a stock of different bread options in the freezer helps reduce food waste.

  1. Stay hydrated

Keeping hydrated throughout the day is great for your child’s well-being. Given this, they should aim to drink at least 8 cups of fluid daily. Milk and plain water are the best drink options. We understand that getting children to drink water can be challenging so perhaps try to infuse it with slices of fruits like lemon, cucumber, or berries for a burst of flavour. Another idea is to consider using brightly coloured bottles or fun containers to make plain water more appealing and interesting.


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