Making School Lunch Nutrition Work For You

by Arica on July 31, 2012

Achieving or maintaining a healthy body weight can be challenging even if you are fortunate enough to have genetics, age, or other factors on your side. Even under the best set of circumstances, you may feel that the odds of losing weight are stacked against you, as work schedules, time constraints and personal commitments make eating properly rather difficult. Far from being a highlight in terms of eating well each day, the school lunch nutrition routine may even support packing on unwanted fat and calories. The combination of convenient but unhealthy food choices, having little time for exercise, and the seemingly insurmountable school lunch nutrition statistics may make you feel that your weight loss situation is virtually hopeless. The good news is that with a few simple and consistent substitutions, you can make progress in your quest to achieve an ideal weight.

Questionable school lunch nutrition standards along with an increasingly sedentary lifestyle may seem like the perfect setup for poor health and obesity. While opting for a convenient midday meal may seem economical or smart in light of your daily schedule, choosing food that is overly processed and low on genuine nutritional value will likely hurt you in the long run. A little planning and creative thinking, however, can turn this typically challenging time of day into an opportunity to nourish your body, cut calories, and even chip away at unwanted fat. You may even turn the tide in terms of school lunch nutrition by substituting one or two items at a time as you promote healthy eating as an important daily activity. Reducing your usual amount of cookies or brownies and adding a few apple slices or orange sections, for example, can reduce your fat intake without completely depriving you from enjoying a favorite sweet treat.

While learning about school lunch nutrition facts may tempt to you to make radical changes right away or even forgo lunch altogether, it is highly unlikely that these options will enhance your fitness and health. Drinking a glass of water with your lunch as opposed to a can of soda or having a few carrot sticks in place of French fries may not seem like much, but these modest dietary changes can have a major impact on your metabolism, energy level, and weight. Making small but consistent substitutions that eliminate fat and calories from your midday meal will likely support your weight loss goals, even if you are working to overcome genetics or environmental factors that may be making weight loss difficult for you.

Just because school lunch nutrition requirements are perhaps not what they should be, you can take control whether you buy what is offered or create meals on your own. You can take cues from what is offered in lunchroom settings, and your subtle changes may translate into a major dietary improvement. A little investigation may uncover mealtime choices that still provide needed protein, for example, but that are better for you in terms of fat and calories. Your usual midday meal consisting of a fatty sandwich and fries may be replaced with lean meat and cheese on healthy bread, crunchy raw vegetables, and crackers made with healthier ingredients. Stocking up on food items that offer real nutritional value and devoting a few minutes to preparing a nutritious lunch may be quick, economical, and surprisingly easy.

Things like prepared meals and snack foods like chips or cheese crackers are often readily available, but they may provide more fat sodium than you need. Even if you start each day with a good breakfast, your weight loss goals may be stalled if your usual lunchtime choice adds an overabundance of calories and fat to your diet. For those days when you simply find eating right to be nearly impossible, you can make better choices by opting for a smaller order of fries or making your side order raw fruit or vegetables as opposed to something that has been heavily sweetened, salted, or fried. You may even find that a glass of pure fruit juice satisfies your taste for something sweet, making it much easier to resist a dessert that is loaded with unneeded calories.

School lunch nutrition may translate into consuming a lot of saturated fat and cholesterol, but only if you let it. There may be many healthful alternatives, and you can take control by resisting the urge to take what may be the easiest mealtime route. Celebrating your seemingly small victories such as taking a brief stroll when you can after a meal, cutting back on sugary drinks, or devising your own healthy lunch are likely to keep you motivated at mealtimes as well. Quick workouts, healthier food choices, and remembering that your health and fitness are most important may be the perfect formula for achieving real and lasting weight loss.

Arica

Arica

Head of Vendor Training at Creative Bioscience
Arica brings the passion for quality communication. She works daily with vendors to make sure our customers get the most accurate information on product benefits. Arica’s favorite product is African Mango 1200
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