Dr. Janice Johnston recently wrote an article for the Ahwatukee Foothills News and East Valley Tribune, outlining ways parents can make healthy meals for their children during the school year. In the article, the Arrowhead Health Centers’ Medical Director and family practice physician suggests the benefits of parents taking a little extra time to improve their children’s nutrition are endless. Its important to start with a healthy breakfast each morning and pack a full lunch instead of a few snacks that are quick and easy to prepare. She includes some healthy school lunch ideas to get you started.
Healthy School Lunch Ideas
Eating healthy throughout the day helps children maintain energy and focus. As any teacher will tell you, a well fed student is an attentive student. Dr Johnston recommends that balanced meals consist of a fiber (leafy greens, beans, and celery), protein (chicken, eggs, Greek yogurt), and healthy fat (almonds, avocados, coconut milk).
For example, a parent could take sliced turkey, cheese, and avocado and roll it in a whole wheat wrap.
Another great wrap combination she suggests is chicken, grapes, and Greek yogurt.
These healthy school lunch ideas will help make your child have energy throughout the day, not crashing quickly after a meal loaded with sugars and simple carbohydrates.
Don’t Forget About Breakfast
The belief of breakfast being the most important meal of the day isn’t just a cliche’ but a well held opinion of many physicians and nutritional experts. After sleeping all night and not consuming any calories while we are sleeping, our bodies need to refuel so they can provide us with the energy needed to get through the day.
Kids who don’t eat breakfast are often tired and irritable, which is not a great way to start a school day.
For breakfast, Dr. Johnston recommends fresh fruits, oatmeal, whole grain toast with nut butter, or healthy smoothies like chocolate peanut butter, and milk.
Innovating Health with Preventative and Proactive Care
At Arrowhead Health Centers, our physicians not only focus on sickness and disease, but we often lend preventative care expertise to our patients. Dr. Johnston is one of many physicians the media turns to for such expertise and credibility. To schedule an appointment with one of our family care physicians, contact us today. To read the whole article by Dr. Johnston, East Valley Tribune.