You may prefer to provide your child with a well-balanced packed lunch. Research shows that approximately half of all school children take a packed lunch to school, and it accounts for a third of the child's daily food intake (Source: Healthylunch.org.uk).
The UK Government recently produced packed lunch guidance in support of the implementation of new school food standards. The guidelines recommend that a packed lunch should include:
- One portion of fruit or vegetables each day
- Meat, fish or another source of non-dairy protein each day (e.g. lentils, beans, pulses, falafel)
- A starchy food each day e.g. rice, potatoes, pasta, noodles, cous cous, cereals
- A dairy food each day e.g. milk, cheese, yoghurt, fromage frais
- An oily fish at least once every three weeks
For more Government advice on healthier lunches for children, click here.
Nutritionist Resource, an independent UK organisation, provides access to lots of nutrition advice and guidance, and has some helpful suggestions on creating 'Loveable Lunchboxes'.