What’s for lunch?

Kids across Australia have returned to school in the past few weeks, and it has been difficult to avoid the never ending ‘return to school’ advertising.  Everything from school bags, stationery, office furniture, hairstyles, uniforms, drink bottles and lunch boxes. Which brings me to school lunches.

A simple Google search of ‘school lunch’ returns over 509 million hits in less than a second. Parents are faced with balancing the trade-off between lunches which are quick, healthy, inexpensive, but won’t spoil in a lunch box on a 40 degree day, get traded, end up in the bin, fed to the dog or squashed in the bottom of a school bag.  Supermarkets have been adding to the confusion and advertising their suggestions for back to school lunch ideas in catalogues for weeks now.  Even department stores are getting in on the act.  You may have seen the Big W catalogue suggestions for after school snacks, and the ‘vegie smugglers‘ alternate suggestions.


Vegie Smugglers

Vegie Smugglers’ response to a Big W ad for after school snacks http://vegiesmugglers.com.au/

To help guide parents with their decision making and understanding of what constitutes a healthy lunch, a lot of money is spent by government and not-for-profit organisations in an endeavour to ensure our kids have healthy lunches and snacks to eat, at least while at school.  School ‘kitchen garden’ programs to further encourage and reinforce healthy eating are now common place across the country too.

So – it looks like we have the kids covered.  As adults we have access to countless ideas, options and support to plan healthy lunches and snacks for kids, but how well are we planning our own lunches and snacks?

Do you survive on coffee and the nearest vending machine, perhaps even gnawing at your desk when the 3pm ‘hangries’ strike? Do you leave your lunch options to chance, grab something from the local takeaway / cafe / cafeteria with little thought as to whether it is helping move you toward or away from your wellness goals.  If you are at home during the day, do you have any idea before hunger strikes what you intend to have for lunch, or do you graze all day picking at left overs and work your way through the biscuit tin?

Or do you head off to work each day with a well planned healthy lunch and some snack options to get you through the day.

Regardless of whether we have children or not, preparing healthy and nutritious lunches and snacks can not only us get through the day clear headed and with enough energy to avoid the 3pm ‘hangries’, but save us money, and time which could be spent moving further than the nearest vending machine during our lunch break.  Imagine too, finishing work at the end of the day and having the energy to go for a walk/swim/run/ride/frisbee/(*insert movement of choice here) with your kids/partner/best friend/fur-baby/(*insert companion of choice here)!

Work lunches needn’t be complicated, or worse, boring. In the coming weeks I will write more posts about some strategies you might find useful to make planning your lunches and snacks quick and easy whether you work in an office, outside, at home or away.  Until then, if you have any questions leava comment below or send me an email at joanne@lifesparkwellness.com.au


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