Packing a Healthy Lunchbox

Image of a plastic lunchbox and a banana

Well-balanced, healthy lunches and snacks are important for active and growing children. Nutritious lunches and snacks help children concentrate and learn. Most children require three meals a day and two to three snacks to meet their daily requirements. Remember that children have small stomachs, so are likely eating every three hours or so.

The Australian Guide to Healthy Eating helps us to choose a well-balanced diet filled with a variety of foods from each food group. It’s important to offer your child variety and something from all food groups. Please refer to the images below for guidelines and fantastic alternatives.

A more in-depth list of items you can place in healthy lunchbox

Children often forget to drink. Remember it is important to develop habits of drinking water even when not thirsty, especially when playing sport or in warmer months. If children are returning home from school cranky and tired, they may be dehydrated. Water and milk are the best drinks for children. They can be frozen to help keep foods in the lunchbox cool. There’s no need to supply your child with juicy, energy, sports or carbonated drinks. These drinks can increase tooth decay and are displacing other more important food or drink options in the lunchbox.

  • Keep it simple
  • Keep serves small
  • Ensure foods can be opened easily
  • Ice bricks are great to keep lunches fresh and cool
  • Keep offering your child less-preferred foods, as children learn to eat what is familiar to them through repetition
  • Foods such as sandwiches can be prepared the night before or on the weekend.

For additional info LiveLighter has a guide for constructing a healthy, balanced lunchbox.

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