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Healthy Lunch Options

Although breakfast is the most important meal of the day, most people choose to skip it completely, mainly due to time constraints. Because of the usual rush in the morning, it is also very rare to see people carry their lunch from home. Therefore, in case you end up making a trip to a fast food joint or a vending machine for snacks, at lunch time, you are not alone. Thousands of men, women and children living across the United States have no choice but to eat fast food, fried food or processed food for lunch. However, all these foods are bound to take their toll on your body, as they could trigger off several health problems, some of which include high blood pressure, cholesterol problems, diabetes and obesity, just to name a few.
In order to avoid such health problems, it is important to watch what you eat at every meal. This means that you should start looking at a few healthy lunch options, like salads, sandwiches, soup, all of which are served by most eating joints. Unfortunately, there is no way for you to monitor the ingredients that are used in foods prepared by restaurants. Therefore, you may want to use these healthy lunch recipes and options, to pack your own lunch at home.  

Preparing healthy lunches for work or school is one of the best ways in which you can maximize your family’s overall well being. In addition to that, you could also save yourself a lot of money, just by making use of various healthy lunch ideas at home.  Many people get bored of eating the same foods every day and you too need not restrict your healthy lunch options to soup, salad and sandwiches. You could modify some of your favorite foods, like pizzas, burgers, pastas, wraps, and so on, to increase its nutritional content, before packing it for lunch. Fortunately, not all healthy lunch options take a lot of time to execute; there are several easy healthy recipes that can be prepared in less than an hour. These quick and healthy food recipes are easily available through cooking books as well as online resources. Given below is an example of one of the healthy lunch recipes that can be used for people of all ages:

Chicken Wraps:

  • Skinless chicken breast, which has been cooked: 1 Piece
  • Soft flour tortillas: 4 Pieces
  • Cucumber, chopped finely: ¼ Piece
  • Black pepper, ground: A pinch
  • Lettuce, shredded: 4 Leaves
  • Soft low fat cheese: 4 Tablespoons
  • Salt: To taste
  • Sweet corn, boiled: 100 Grams
  • Unflavored yogurt: 4 Tablespoons
  • In a medium sized bowl, add the low fat cheese and the unflavored yogurt.  Mix both the ingredients, until the form a smooth paste. Sprinkle the salt and pepper and stir them in.  
  • Cut the chicken breast into chunks and add them to the bowl, with the cheese and yogurt dip. Add the cucumber and the corn to the bowl and stir all the ingredients in together to make the filling of the wraps
  • Spoon an equal amount of filling on to each tortilla. Sprinkle some lettuce over the filling
  • Roll up each wrap tightly and then cut them in half, before wrapping them in cling film. 

Healthy Lunch Options for Work

Working men, women and teenagers need to eat foods that are light, but still provide the body with adequate energy. Given below are a few healthy lunch options for working people:
  • Mexican salad, with beans, olives, corn, cucumbers, onions and salsa sauce, along with organic corn chips
  • Cheese and ham Panini, with pesto sauce and vegetables
  • Crusty brown rolls, stuffed with turkey slices, cheese and vegetables
  • Homemade pizza on English muffins with pizza sauce, mozzarella cheese and vegetables
  • Bagels stuffed with hummus and fresh vegetables and cold cuts
  • Whole wheat pasta salad, with peas, corn, olives, mushrooms and sausages.

Healthy Lunch Options for School

While little children prefer to carry finger foods to school, healthy lunch options for older children can be a bit more varied. Though children are known to be picky eaters, they usually show a willingness to try foods that look interesting. Hence, given below are a few healthy lunch options for children:
  • Muffins, prepared with different ingredients, which could include spinach and corn, bacon and cheese or mixed vegetables.
  • Pizzas on whole wheat bread, topped with fresh tomato sauce and vegetables
  • Pinwheels made with tortillas, some mild sauce and meats such as salmon slices, turkey, bacon or ham
  • Whole wheat sandwiches made with eggs, meat or vegetables, cut into tiny squares or triangles
  • Finger foods like homemade fish fingers, chicken bites, steamed baby corn and carrot sticks
While most of the health lunch options mentioned above are quite safe, it is best for people to consult a dietician before adding any of them to their daily diets. This is all the more important in case of people who suffer from allergies, food intolerance or any other preexisting medical condition.
Submitted on January 16, 2014