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Pack a punch in their lunch

Packing a healthy and tasty lunchbox for your child is easier than you think, says Katie Trinh.

“You might start the year off strong, but after a term, run out of time or ideas,’’ adds Ms Trinh, who is a health promotion officer of the South Western Sydney Local Health District.

It’s important to keep packing a healthy lunch to give your child the energy to learn and play, especially after Easter, and Ms Trinh has some tips that could help parents.

“Instead of cutting a vegetable into sticks, try circles or using a peeler to make ribbons,’’ she says.

“This can help get your child more excited about vegetables and eating their five serves a day.’’

Ms Trinh also recommends adding some hummus or tzatziki as a dip for even more flavour.

“Tins of tuna, baked beans or rice cakes are great when your child wants something different for lunch,’’ she explains.

“They also last a long time in your pantry.

While a sandwich is the “go-to’’ lunch for many families, leftovers mixed with noodles or pasta are another easy option.

They can be kept cold and still taste great.

Finger foods like rice paper rolls are another idea.

“Mornings are a busy time, so packing the night before can also save you some stress,’’ suggests Ms Trinh.

“Get your child involved in packing their lunch by letting them choose between healthy options.

“They will be more likely to eat it all.

“Be a great role model by packing your lunch at the same time.’’

And one more thing: don’t forget during the warmer months to use an ice brick or frozen drink bottle to keep their food chilled.

If you would like more tips and advice, head online to healthykids.nsw.gov.au

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