Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Parent to Parent: School Lunches
For many parents, back to school means back to making lunches everyday. So, how can you pack a healthy lunch that your kids won't toss out or give away? We get some tasty tips from a nutritionist in today's Parent to Parent.
WSVN -- You wouldn't send your kids off to class without their backpack full of school supplies, but what about what's inside their lunchbox?
Susan Shevlin: "I feel it's my job to direct them in the right path now because it's really important."
Susan Shevlin has three children's tastes to consider when packing school lunches. She always makes an effort to include healthy foods her kids will eat.
Jessica Shevlin: "Some days I had a sandwich, sometimes my mom packed me pasta and a salad."
South Florida nutritionist Ronni Julien says what you put in their lunchbox is important because what they eat can help them focus all day long.
Ronni Julien: "We want kids to have a regulated source of energy throughout the day, and that comes from giving them protein sources."
Start with lean meats like turkey or roast beef. Ronni says be creative, and your kids will be less likely to throw it out.
Ronni Julien: "Here's a wrap with your favorite cold cut. We have lean roast beef and a turkey pastrami, again with some lettuce and tomato, could be a little twist on your typical sandwich."
Cheese sticks and even edamame or soy beans are also high in protein, and they're fun foods kids like to eat.
Ronni Julien: "You can pop up some popcorn and send it along, sunflower seeds. Again, stick with a serving because nuts tend to be quite high in calories but back on the good list."
Also good and easy to pack, cherry tomatoes and carrot sticks. Parents, the good news is you don't have to deprive your child of something sweet.
Ronni Julien: "Those little 100 calorie packs are very cute. The other great thing about them is that they control the portion for you."
Susan Shevlin says packing school lunches everyday can be a challenge, but she knows how important it is to start healthy eating habits that will last a lifetime.
Susan Shevlin: "I think it's got to be a family change for everybody because what are you going to say, 'I can have it but you can't'?"
Lynn Martinez: "Ronni says, don't forget to have some protein every morning too. It will help boost your child's brain power for the day."