Life, right? Getting out of bed every morning is enough responsibility alone – most of us also have to feed a crowd and shuffle everyone off to school on time. And then the adorable bento box craze goes viral and making lunch just became a full-scale art competition.
Okay. We admit a slight addiction to ogling Instagram feeds full of animal faces and monsters made of cheese and grapes – but who has the time? Instead we’d rather spend those precious few moments of free time in the morning pressing the snooze button one last time or simply spending a minute or two sitting (yes, sitting) with our family at the breakfast table.
Here’s the good news: a lovingly packed healthy lunch does not have to be hard! (And after all, carving a crocodile face out of bread wastes at least 25% of the slice of bread.) Actually, the most important thing in your child’s lunch box isn’t a clever face made of food, but a well-balanced meal that powers a growing mind and a healthy body.
Organic Valley® knows two things – healthy, delicious dairy and how to make life simpler. School lunches are no different, whether you’re looking to pack a milk box or string cheese. Their dairy products are crafted on family farms and ready to dress up even a drab brown paper bag into a balanced lunch. (And for the busy parents out there, check out their new Organic Balance™ breakfast protein shakes!)
Here are the basics of a simple, healthy lunch:
- Protein, essential for growing bodies and minds, can be found in a variety of sources, including dairy, meats, and even grains.
- Plants provide vital phytonutrients, including vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, and protein. Mix things up with cut fruit and veggies, or sauces like guacamole.
- Fats are important (yes, important!) to provide a source of sustained energy. Dairy, nuts, and even avocados provide healthy fats.
- Fiber is critical to a balanced diet and the body’s ability to process food. The good news is that if you’ve included plants, you’ve taken care of the fiber component!
Bonus: If you’re packing dairy into your child’s lunch, then you’ve covered both protein and healthy fats. That was easy. Some of our favorite lunch box staples include Organic Valley Stringles® and Organic Valley Single-Serve Milks. Stringles® are available in cheddar, Colby Jack, and mozzarella, and provide 7 grams of organic protein and 20 percent of daily calcium in one serving. (Plus, it’s the addictively appealing string cheese that we all know and love – just better!) And the Single-Serve Milks are shelf stable and available in lowfat milk, whole milk, and lowfat chocolate milk. These perfect-for-lunch milk boxes pack 7 grams of organic protein, 25 percent of daily calcium, and 20 percent of daily Vitamin D.
So, the next time you feel compelled to stress over an adorably packed, Instagram-worthy lunch… pause and take a breath. Instead, pack a few healthy lunch staples and spend those few extra minutes peeling away at your own Organic Valley Stringles®.
Organic Valley is America’s pioneering cooperative of more than 2,000 organic family farms in 36 states. Which means there’s a farm nearby, everywhere. Since 1988 Organic Valley has grown their mission to make OMG-delicious food for you so that they can continue to nurture the soils, waters and communities everyone shares. Whether it’s milk, cheese, butter, yogurt, cream, eggs, produce, or soy, organic is all they ever do because Organic Valley is always bringing the good.