How to Prepare a Healthy Lunch Box


If you want to eat healthy or lose weight, you can try to prepare your own lunch 3 times a week. This can help you reduce the intake of fat, cholesterol, sodium and calories.

Healthy lunch box tips:

  1. Choose whole grain bread, for example: 100% wheat or rye. You can also choose different types of bread, such as bagels, tortillas, English muffins, sandwiches thin etc.

  2. Choose low-fat meats or meat substitutes, such as eggs, legumes, beans and soy products.

  3. Consume at least 4 cups of different colored vegetables and fruits every day.

  4. Limit seasonings or condiments that are high in fat, such as mayonnaise, butter and cream sauces. Try using vegetables as seasonings, such as roasted peppers or eggplant. You can also add lean meats to your vegetable dish to make a mixed dish.

  5. Try to avoid chips with sandwiches. Use baked chips or pretzels instead. The best is adding a fruit or a yogurt instead.

  6. Bring water or tea to avoid sugary drinks.

  7. At the supermarket, choose pre-cut or individual packaged foods, such as Salad or apple slices or string cheese.

  8. Always have a variety of healthy foods available at home to make preparation quick and easy.

  9. If you do not have refrigerator at work, use ice-pack for storage.

  10. Heart healthy lunch - tuna and salmon are good sources of omega-3 fats which benefits heart health and makes your lunch more fun!

Shopping List Ideas

Fruits • Apples • Bananas • Berries (blueberries/raspberries) • Dried fruit (apricots, cranberries, dates, figs, prunes, raisins, or fruit leather made with 100% real fruit, etc.) • Grapes • Kiwi • Mangoes • Melon (cantaloupe/ honeydew/watermelon) • Oranges (or clementines/tangerines) • Peaches • Pears • Plums • Strawberries • 100% fruit juice

Vegetables • Bell peppers (green, red, orange, yellow) • Broccoli • Carrots (and baby carrots) • Cauliflower • Celery • Corn • Cucumber • Green beans • Peas • Potatoes • Salad (romaine, kale, spinach) • Sugar snap peas • Sweet potatoes • Tomatoes (sliced, cherry or grape) • Zucchini • 100% vegetable juice

Grains

• 100% whole grain bread (bread, rolls, bagels) • 100% whole grain crackers • Brown rice (or quinoa, barley) • Whole wheat pasta • Popcorn • Tortillas (corn tortillas or 100% whole wheat tortillas)

Protein

• Fish and shellfish (tuna) • Poultry (chicken or turkey with white meat, no skin) • Lean meats (>95% lean ground beef, lean pork, lean beef trimmed of fat) • Lean deli meats • Eggs (hard-boiled, egg salad, etc.) • Soy (soybeans, tofu, or edamame) • Beans (black, garbanzo, kidney, pinto, etc.), • Other legumes, lentils, hummus • Nuts and nut butters (almonds, cashews, peanuts, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, peanut butter, sunbutter, etc.)

Dairy

• Milk (fat-free or low-fat milk, soy milk, almond milk) • Yogurt (low-fat, Greek) • Reduced-fat cheeses (made with 2% or less fat milk); string cheese • Low-fat cottage cheese

Interested in learning about weight goal and nutrition needs? Schedule a free body weight and fat% analysis with Hazel at 626-283-5128 or email to hazel@smarteater.net.

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