Whether you send your kids off to
indoctrination centers school or keep them at home, it’s wise to keep their blood sugar levels low. Hence why kids should have low-carb lunches instead of addictive junk food.
Low-Carb Lunches for Kids
Everyone benefits from reducing their sugar, processed carbs, and junk food.
Many critics are confused and think when we say low-carb kids we mean NO carbs kids. It is also a myth that eating low-carb is restrictive, difficult, and lacking in nutrition.
Simply going back to real whole foods is what we are suggesting. It’s a great option for both you and your children. Quality protein, healthy fats, and nutrient-dense carbs from vegetables, nuts, seeds, berries, and low-sugar fruits.
You will notice from the images below, that some of the lunchboxes contain items that are higher carb than you and I may have in our day, but my emphasis is on whole food that is lower in carbs.
Whilst most children live off a diet of bread, juice, chocolate, granola bars, fruit yogurt, goldfish, crisps, and sugary drinks, the lunch boxes below are a far cry from that and are based on unprocessed food with nutrition, quality protein, and healthy fats.
THE EFFECT OF SUGAR ON OUR KIDDOS
When children aren’t on the sugar roller coaster, concentration is more sustained, behavior improved and their nutrition is phenomenal.
There are so many hidden sugars in foods these days (see below), especially ‘health’ foods. Sauces, cereals, muesli bars, dried fruit, and all the other “standard choices” are high sugar sources.
The World Health Organisation recommends no more than 12g sugar a day (3 tsp) for children, but this is exceeded each morning on cereal or toast alone, let alone toppings you might add.
It is the accumulation of sugars throughout the day that are concerning experts. Diet has a huge impact on brain development. Not only do we not realize how much sugar our children are consuming, but the effect it will cause is still unknown.
HOW MUCH HIDDEN-SUGAR IS IN YOUR CHILDREN’S LUNCH BOX?
These fabulous graphics are from “That Sugar Film”. One man embarks on a journey of high sugar diet by eating “healthy foods” but are actually laden with hidden sugar such as low-fat yogurt, muesli bars, juices, and cereals.
We buy low-fat healthy products in the belief they are better for us, but take a look at the label of some health products and prepare to be amazed.
Healthy options of juice and smoothies are also laden with sugar. Fruit juice contains as much sugar as fizzy drinks.
I know parents already have enough on their plate, so my goal with these low-carb lunches for kids is to make healthy eating extra-simple.
Always check labels fr hidden sugars such as dried apple syrup, honey, coconut sugar, corn syrup, concentrated fruit juice, dried fruit, fructose powder, HFCS.
In fact, there are more than 50 names for sugar.
THE BEST ITEMS IN LOW-CARB LUNCHES FOR KIDS
These low-carb kid-friendly meals are easy to put together. You can even mix and match items from the list below to create a bento box of sorts.
I always pack the protein in my children’s lunch boxes first. It makes up the majority of their lunch box then I plan and pack the other vegetables, fruit, and snacks next.
- cherry tomatoes
- carrot sticks
TOP TIP: Try to cut your veggies in different ways. Your children might just love carrot sticks, but not carrot slices. Or how about shredded carrots instead? Cucumber sliced or sticks. Cherry tomatoes whole or halved.
- Frozen berries
- small apple
- small pear
TOP TIP: grapes and tropical fruit such as pineapple and mango are much higher in naturals sugars. So be mindful of how much your children are eating. Sugar is sugar.
ADDITIONAL TIPS AND TRICKS:
- Leftovers are KING!!! Try and make double dinners, or put a tray of chicken strips or sausages in the oven when the oven is on, then lunch is sorted for the next few days.
- I often use meat as a wrap with the filling inside. My children have started to love huge slices of lettuce for the ‘bread’ with cheese or ham inside.
- Processed meat – there is a lot of controversy regarding processed meat. There are many studies that are for/against nitrates/nitrites found in meat. We eat meat that has been processed as little as possible. Buy ham off the bone rather than the shaped luncheon slices, buy bacon with no preservatives and sugar, and buy meat as close to nature intended it.
- How low-carb you want to go depends on what your goals are. Those who are diabetic will restrict their carbs more strictly. Those who want to help their child lose weight or other health issues will set their own goals and limits. It’s all about being “carb appropriate”.
- Nut allergies – remember to check if your school has a nut-free policy. My 8-year-old is at Primary School so is not allowed to take nuts, whereas for my 11 and 13 yr old it is permitted. The lunch boxes above are from all 3 children and abide by their school policies (I wish there were a sugar-free policy).