With the start of the school year just days away, that means it’s time for parents to start thinking about what their kids will be eating for lunch.
Rebecca Denison is a Registered Dietitian at GBMC. She says when it comes to your child’s lunch, having a well-balanced diet is key.
"You need to eat healthy foods so that we nourish our bodies and our brains,” said Denison. “If we're not getting healthy foods, the kids are not going to be learning as well.”
Denison suggests kids eat a combination of different food groups like fruits and vegetables as well as whole grains and protein. She also recommends parents read food labels when grocery shopping.
"It starts at the grocery store,” said Denison. “You have to have healthy food in your house to be able to pack the lunch.”
She says you should avoid trans fats and pay attention to the amount of sugar in what you’re eating. Denison recommends getting items with no added sugar or as little as possible.
"We want to minimize the junk and maximize our health,” said Denison.
Skipping meals shouldn’t be an option. Denison says it does more harm than good.
"We don't want to skip meals because when we skip meals we tend to eat more junk food,” said Denison. “Junk food is not fueling our body.”
Whether you’re packing lunch or allowing your child to buy it at school, making healthy choices are important for your child’s success in the classroom.
"Teaching the kids what's healthy and what's not healthy and why they need to eat it, when they need to eat it, those things will carry over into the day at school"
Here are some more tips:
Pack lunch the night before to help make the mornings easier
Snacks can help get your child through a long school day
Mix food groups to help get kids full faster
Sneak some fun into meals to get kids to eat healthier
Try new fruits and vegetables every week or every month to help keep things interesting.