9 February, 2023
A Dietitian's Guide to Healthy Lunchboxes
What are the key things to consider when packing your kids' lunchboxes? Senior dietitian Carla shows her own daughter's packed lunchbox.
Key tips for packing lunchboxes
- Store in cooling bag in warmer weather. Use a frozen water bottle or a cool pack to keep the food from going bad during the day.
- Seasonal: In winter use warming foods like soup in a thermos and in the summer months, pack cooling foods like cucumbers.
- Pack the night before. You can be better planned and ensure you get all the food groups!
- Use a Bento box or use separate containers. This keeps the food from spoiling but also some kids get picky and it'll increase their chances of eating what you pack. Separating foods can also help to make it appear less overwhelming for some kids.
- Get variety: ensure that you use foods from across the food groups and think about key nutrients like calcium that are required for growing bodies! Carbs (bread, potatoes, pasta, etc) are generally easy but protein & healthy fats can be overlooked. Protein and healthy fats will keep your kid fuller for longer to help with learning.
- Pack for ease: pack serviettes, cutlery or whatever will be needed to enjoy their lunch.
Five Food Groups in a Lunchbox
About the Author
Carla Battaglia - Senior Paediatric Dietitian & Nutritionist
With only 6% of Aussie kids meeting their dietary requirements, Accredited Practicing Dietitian Carla is passionate about changing this statistic. Carla has completed post-graduate training in paediatric health & nutrition. She sees kids and families with gut conditions, allergies / intolerances, fussy eating and weight management.