Healthy packed lunches

Healthy Packed Lunch - Jill ChenMany students forget (or are too lazy) to bring packed lunches to University, and often end up eating processed, unhealthy lunches and snacks at the canteen or the local fast-food joint instead.

Students often blame busy mornings for their lack of packed lunches, but with my three P´s (preparation, planning and portions) you will not only save money and cut down on calories, but also keep your blood sugar levels stable throughout long lectures and evenings at the library, which will help your concentration and focus these last few weeks before the summer.

 

1. Preparation

In case you hit that snooze button a few times too many, it can be a good idea to have your lunch for the following day ready in the fridge. In addition to preparing your lunch the evening before, I also recommend you have several lunch boxes for your food, or a large one with separate sections to keep the food fresh throughout the day.

 2. Planning

If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. It´s as easy as that. Plan what you are going to have for lunch when you go grocery shopping, and preferably buy all the meat, vegetables, fruits and healthy fats (such as avocado, nuts and seeds) you will need for the whole week. By doing this you will always have ingredients available to throw together a healthy and delicious lunch whenever you need to.

3. Portions

To avoid spending hours at the kitchen every week preparing lunches, why not just make a double portion when you are making dinner? Chicken, meat and fish only need popping in the oven, as do vegetables, so just make a large batch while you´re at it, and keep in the fridge for easy lunch options. Also, instead of boiling 2 eggs, boil 6 and you have eggs for your next day’s lunch and a healthy snack the day after. The same goes for potatoes, rice, salads etc. Make loads and eat throughout the week. You get the picture.

To give you an understanding of how easy it can be, I have put together a sample menu for a week of healthy and nutritious lunches:

Monday

Lunch: Chicken, avocado, feta and butternut squash salad.

Snack: Cottage cheese with blueberries, almonds and cinnamon + 1 other fruit.

Tuesday

Lunch: Tuna salad with red peppers, sweetcorn and 2 boiled eggs.

Snack: Carrot sticks with hummus + 1 other fruit or some nuts

Wednesday

Lunch: Salmon with lemon pepper, served with rice/potatoes and vegetables.

Snack: Berries and fruit with quark or yoghurt + almonds.

Thursday

Lunch: Chicken, feta and vegetables in wholemeal pitta bread.

Snack: Rice cakes or crispbread with Philadelphia and turkey slices.

Friday

Lunch: Taco salad – taco spiced lean mince, avocado, sweetcorn, peppers, salad and salsa.

Snack: Cottage cheese or quark with chopped fruit and Goji berries + a sprinkle of some nuts or seeds. 

 

 

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Elisabeth Gjosund

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