Proper nutrition is crucial to maintain good oral health. Nutritious and healthy foods provide the vitamins and minerals needed to maintain the health of teeth and gums. A healthy lunch is a very important part of your child’s day. Inspire your children to eat nutritious foods by providing them with fun and healthy school lunches.
Suggestions and Tips for Healthy School Lunches:
- Involve your child in planning and preparing their school lunch. Children who feel that they have had a part in making their lunches will feel a sense of pride and will be more likely to eat their own lunch and less likely to trade with their friends.
- When packing a new food item, offer it with a familiar food. Let your child pick out five or six lunch items they really like and build on those. Encourage and reward adventurous eating.
- To add interest, cut foods in various ways. For example, carrot sticks could be packed one day and carrot coins another day. Use a cookie cutter to make your child’s sandwich a fun shape.
- Use fresh foods whenever possible. Stay away from processed, packaged, or sugary foods.
- Keep things simple. Most kids will pass on foods that take a lot of effort to eat.
- Use insulated lunch bags in place of brown paper bags. Insulated bags will keep your child’s lunch safe, fresh, and at the proper temperature.
- Include a short, thoughtful note with your child’s lunch.
- To ensure a balanced diet, aim to include items from at least three of the food groups in your child’s school lunch.
- Pack a healthy drink, such as water or 100% fruit juice. Avoid soda and carbonated beverages which can wear down tooth enamel.
For additional strategies and tips on how to encourage healthy eating habits, or to make an appointment for your child’s next dental visit, call any one of Burg Children’s Dentistry’s awesome locations in Utah.