Do you suffer from ‘lunchbox guilt’? According to new research released by Golden Circle, 71 per cent of Aussie parents admit to having a general feeling of guilt when it comes to their kids lunches, due to the pressure of nutritional concerns, their kids friends and of keeping their lunch interesting.
To beat the lunchbox guilt, dietitian Susie Burrell shares her 6 easy lunchbox swaps.
1. Swap staples. Swapping staples such as white bread, snack bars and high sugar fruit drinks for more nutritious options including wholemeal bread, wholegrain snack bars and low sugar drink options as an occasional treat, makes for a more balanced nutritional lunchbox, whilst being something kids can get excited about.
2. Mix it up. One of the easiest ways to make any lunchbox more appealing is to mix up as many shapes and colours as you can – think brightly coloured veg sticks, chopped fruit, cubes of cheese, sandwiches cut into different shapes and a couple of different snacks rather than whole packets.
3. Let kids have a choice. Getting children involved with their lunchbox, by asking them to pick a special inclusion each week, or to choose their weekly fruit or snack of choice will help to create lunches that are not only healthier but also more likely to be eaten.
4. Get decorating. Get your little ones excited about lunch by decorating and customising their lunchbox with stickers and art. Better yet, get them to design their own lunch box! The coolest and most exciting lunchbox they can think of! Does it have an esky compartment? Does it have wheels and is it remote control operated? Now describe it in 25 words or less at goldencircle.com.au/lunchboxcompetition for your chance to get it made in real life.
5. Bake at home. One of the most budget friendly snack options is home baking – trying making a batch of fruit mini muffins or banana bread every few weeks and freeze so you always have a yummy, nutritious, budget friendly lunchbox snack ready to go.
6. Follow the formula. Follow the simple lunchbox formula of a wholegrain sandwich or wrap; a fruit; a vegetable, a dairy and you will always be on the right track with a tasty and nutritionally balanced lunchbox. Throw in an occasional treat such as a low sugar drink, which can go a long way to get kids excited.