When it comes to school lunches, traditional sandwiches might not be as healthy as you think. That is why so many parents are now rethinking the ingredients that they put in their children's sandwiches. Here are a few tips and tricks you can use to make your child's lunch as healthy as possible without sacrificing any flavor.
Skip the Cured and Smoked Meats
We now know that most cured and smoked meats contain carcinogens, and that means they will increase one's risk of developing cancer when they are consumed regularly. As an alternative to traditional lunch meats, you and your family might want to try fresh meats that contain no additives or preservatives. Roasted chicken and turkey are not only two of the healthiest options, but they also have an incredible amount of flavor.
Stack the Veggies High
Another simple way to make a sandwich healthier is to use produce as an alternative to dairy products, jams, and preserves. Instead of using flavored jam on a peanut butter sandwich, you might want to tray slices of bananas, strawberries, or peaches. As for meat sandwiches, firm vegetables will improve the mouthfeel of every bite. Some of the most nutrient-dense vegetables include bell peppers, leafy greens, and tomatoes,
Skip the Traditional Bread
Replacing thicker slices of bread with an alternative such as flatbread or a tortilla is an easy way to reduce the total amount of calories in the sandwich. Many people even prefer the texture of unleavened bread after they have gotten used to it. Some companies, like Klosterman Baking Company, realize that if your children are fussy eaters, then you can try lightly toasting the flatbread before constructing the sandwich to give it a different taste and texture.
Use Condiments Sparingly
Mayonnaise is an extremely popular ingredient for sandwiches, but this condiment is generally packed with calories, cholesterol, and processed sugar. You might be surprised to find out that your children don't even notice the difference when you replace mayonnaise with healthier options like mustard, Greek yogurt, or hummus. A splash of oil and vinegar is another easy way to improve the flavor of a sandwich without adding too many calories.
Sandwiches might not be the only unhealthy thing that your child is eating every day, and that is why you should take a closer look at all of their meals and snacks. While the occasional treat is perfectly fine, the vast majority of food that they eat should be fresh produce, lean protein, and complex carbohydrates.
Rachelle Wilber is a freelance writer living in the San Diego, California area. She graduated from San Diego State University with her Bachelor's Degree in Journalism and Media Studies. She tries to find an interest in all topics and themes, which prompts her writing. When she isn't on her porch writing in the sun, you can find her shopping, at the beach, or at the gym. Follow her on Twitter @RachelleWilber