by Kelly Hoffmann HHC
Getting back tomother_kid_vegetables.jpg a school schedule can be daunting after a carefree summer.  Starting the day with a nutritious breakfast followed by a healthy lunch can help
 jump start your child’s body and brain and provide the fuel needed to maintain attention throughout the long school day.
Many parents find packing a healthy lunch to be challenging, especially for picky eaters.  What do kids need in their lunch boxes to succeed?  Kelly Hoffmann, HHC offers this advice: “Try to avoid anything made with corn, white flour and processed sugar and you will see your children thrive.”
Below are some of Kelly’s lunch tips to fuel your child for success:
  • Skip the fruit drinks. Try replacing them with water, whole fat milk or add some fruit to the water and let it infuse overnight. (Best option is pineapple, watermelon and/or peaches). It’s sweet and delicious and tastes great.
  • Pack healthy carbs.  Apples, bananas, brown rice, quinoa, whole grain wraps are great choices.
  • Opt for lean proteins.  Bake (not fry) a batch of homemade chicken nuggets (get Kelly’s recipe here).  Other lean protein ideas: All natural peanut butter (if no allergy); full-fat Greek yogurt (with a piece of fruit to make it more appealing); fish sticks (seasoned to their liking).
  • Replace cookies with apple chips with some dark or milk chocolate; sprinkle apples with cinnamon; pack fresh blueberries, raspberries, strawberries or cherries; cut pineapple chunks or nectarines into shapes or cubes to make it fun and easier to pack.
  • Swap out chips for carrot sticks with a dip of their choosing.  Other good snack choices are yogurt, hummus, peanut butter, homemade ranch dressing, and herb mix (my son loves a herb mix of salt, pepper and garlic).
  • Pack pumpkin and sunflower seeds – they’re great sources of healthy protein and are always fun to eat!
Introduce these foods at home and make it fun for the kids…let them season their own food (although if my kids had it their way they would use the whole bottle of salt and garlic!)