Preparing a healthy school and uni lunch may have more benefits than you think. Skip your trip to the food court or canteen and reap the benefits of allocating a small portion of your day to making a nutritious and delicious meal!
Here are some benefits to preparing a delicious, healthy lunch to take to school and uni:
1. Controlled portion sizes
Many take-away shops will offer meals in portion sizes much larger and more calorie-dense than we require. At home, you can control how much goes in to each meal, reducing overeating.
2. Saves money
A standard lunch purchased at a take-away shop, food court, or canteen can range between $10 – $20 for a single meal. Over time, it really adds up! Stick to a shopping list with a versatile abundance of veggies and plant based foods. Cook in bulk and consume for dinner and enjoy the left-overs for lunch. Buying in bulk and not wasting good quality produce is a great way to stick to budget and save money, not to mention the nutritional benefits of increasing your vegetable intake!
3. Higher Quality Nutrition
When making foods from home, you know, and control what goes into your meals. Food outlets tend to sell products high in sodium, sugars and fats. Whilst these options may be convenient for us in the short term, long-term habits of choosing these nutrient-poor, energy-dense options may have poor implications towards our health. By controlling what goes into your lunch, you can maximise the amount of nutrients in each meal and reap the benefits of a healthy lunch!
Fuelling yourself with a delicious lunch can decrease temptations to reach for that “something extra” before dinner. Avoid hitting the 3pm slump and fuel your body with good quality carbohydrates, protein and fats to maximise your productivity and energy throughout the afternoon.
Tip For Making Your Own Healthy School and Uni Lunches:
Prep and Plan! Think ahead! Allocate a day, (often Sunday can work best) to sit and think about your meals for the week. Write down a shopping list of all ingredients you will need to make your lunches for the week. Whether you want 5 different meals, or 5 of the same, choose healthy options (veggies, legumes, beans, wholegrains) that can be used for multiple recipes to save some extra money and reduce food waste!
Healthy School and Uni Lunches with Recipes For A Whole Week
A healthy, delicious lunch does not have to cost a fortune, or take hours to prepare. Here are 5 recipes that cost under $5 a serve and take less than 20 minutes to prepare!
These recipes are lunch-box and school-friendly with no nuts or eggs!
Pre-planning your meals for the week can ensure you not only stay on top of your health goals, but it makes you feel so organised knowing you don’t have to think on the spot about what to eat for the day! Start today – create healthy habits and enjoy spending time in the kitchen to make delicious meals. Be sure to give these lunch ideas a try, as they are all so cheap, convenient and delicious! Make sure to take a photo and tag @nourish_naturally on Instagram so I can see your creations. 🙂
This article was co-written by student Nutritionist Tahlia Claringbold from the Nourish Naturally team.