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Make a healthy lunch your child will eat!

August is "Kids Eat Right" month and school is just around the corner. If you are packing a lunch for your child, follow these tips for packing a nutritious lunch that your kids will actually eat!

  1. Let your child help: Let them pick out a fruit or vegetable at the grocery store that they want to try. You can also ask your child to help make or pack their lunch.
  2. Make it fun: Give a fruit or veggie a fun nickname. In one study, consumption of carrots in a cafeteria almost doubled when they were labeled as "x-ray vision carrots." If you're feeling ambitious you can use a cookie cutter to cut out fruits, vegetable or sandwiches.
  3. Finger foods: Finger foods break the meal down into manageable pieces. Fruits are far less likely to be wasted if they are chopped up into bite-sized pieces.
  4. Dips: Dips contain fats, which can help your child absorb vitamins from the vegetables they are eating. If you are faced with the choice of not eating a vegetable or eating vegetables with dip, we chose vegetables with dip!
  5. Balance: Include 3-5 foods groups, with at least 1 fruit or vegetable, to make a balanced meal. Refer to the chart below for ways build a healthy and delicious meal. Remember to include a beverage such as water, milk or 100% juice.
Whole wheat breadGuacamoleHamCarrotsApple slices
Soft and smooth whole grain breadMayonnaiseTurkeyBroccoli piecesStrawberries
Pita pocketsHummusMozzarella cheesePeppersBananas
English muffinsCream cheeseTunaLettucePineapple rings
MinibagelsYogurtCheddar cheeseCucumbersDried fruit
Whole wheat TortillasSalad dressingProvolone cheeseCherry tomatoesBlueberries
Whole-grain crackersApple butterChickenSnap peasSliced melon

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