by Kathleen Daelemans
I was recently invited to do a segment on NBC's Today in conjunction with Prevention Magazine. The topic; Back to School Lunches, something that comes up this time every year. We all talked about how everyone in television was covering the topic and how our segment absolutely had to serve the right-now needs of our audience.
We guessed that no matter who was doing the grocery shopping and lunch box assembling, they were shorter on time than ever. We wanted our school lunches to be quick to put together, we wanted our lunch boxes to come home empty or mostly empty anyway, and we wanted our lunch menus to do more than entertain kids. Making kids smile when they're away from home is paramount, especially when they're little, but keeping their energy up is even more important.
NBC Today Kids...Healthier Than All The Rest!
We wanted our kids to feel better in school, to be more alert, to perform better on their tests over all and we wanted them to want to be at school. High hopes for bologna and cheese sandwiches but they didn't make the cut this go-round.
"Kathleen spent time in the trenches. She interviewed real kids and real Moms, in real lunch rooms across the country. She talked to them about their very real experiences with school lunches and about their hopes for great tasting lunches for the coming school year ahead."
"After art, lunch is the best part of the day", says Maya Gorelick aged 7, "I get to play with my friend Reese".
"If I don't like what my Mom's put in my lunch box, I don't get to eat again until 4:30 p.m." says Christopher Craig a High School student in Farmington Hills, Michigan.
No Cooking Required!
Hopefully, parents will find these school lunches are incredibly easy to shop for, that most of the ingredients can be purchased with coupons and that even the little ones can assist with the assembling. "Our children depend on us to put serious thought into the foods they eat for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
They deserve the very best. We all do. But so many parents are working two and three jobs these days. There are lots of single parents out there too. I'm a single Auntie. We're tired. It's hard to get healthy meals on the table. Or we perceive it to be. "Hopefully, people will see it's not as hard as they think to get healthy lunch boxes packed and out the door.
You might as well double up on the ingredients because these lunches are perfect for adults too", Daelemans says. "Especially if you're looking to drop a few pounds without feeling hungry all the time. I promise you, you won't leave the lunch room feeling like you need to find a bun and some ketchup for the table legs.
These lunches are fill-you-up super scrumptious! My favorite is the tiny eater. I love eating super clean like that, and going from one taste and texture sensation to the next. It's like eating fashion. What could be better. Yum!"