I firmly believe that packing a lunch is both an art and a science. I get hangry really easily – my family can testify – so I always make sure to have food on the go for whenever I get hungry, which is about every 23 minutes. I always make my lunch and prepare my snackage the day before so that it is in the fridge ready to go the next morning, and it is so much easier to chop up some extra vegetables while making dinner than it is to do it in the morning.
I take a lot of fruits and vegetables with me to snack on throughout the day and some of my favourite go-to’s are bananas, apples, pears, bell peppers, cucumbers, carrot sticks, and sugar snap peas. I find they don’t get squished as easily as things like nectarines and don’t start smelling funny after sitting in my bag for a while like broccoli does.
One of the best parts about packing a bunch of healthy food with me is that I am rarely tempted to stop and buy food that is probably not as good for me as my container of hummus and my whole wheat pita sticks. If I do stop somewhere to buy food, whether it is on my university campus or around my work, I hit up Subway for a delicious sandwich or salad. I find it is one of the best places to get healthy food for a reasonable price.
Grapes are an awesome fruit to take with you… just make sure to take them in a container so they won’t get squished. Nothing ruins your morning class more than opening up your bag anticipating delicious grapes and realizing that a plastic bag won’t exactly keep them safe around your textbooks. I am not speaking from experience of course, I have just heard this is what happens. I clearly have the common sense to put my grapes in a container in the first place.
Don’t buy pre-packaged “100-calorie” snacks. Ever. Not only are random chemicals added to them when they are packaged like that but is it really that hard to portion out 14 almonds if you only want to eat 100 calories worth? No, it is not. The best perfectly wrapped hundred calorie snack that is portable, great tasting, and full of energy is this bad boy… the original 100-calorie snack.
I have go-to meals and snacks that I pack and usually I include some type of nut or seed to give me a crunchy and energy-packed snack that is amazing with some sort of fruit in the morning or afternoon. One problem… which nut to choose?
Yum. These decisions make my life so tough. Another one of my favourite snacks that I only eat every once and a while because they taste like dessert are Clif bars! I have Clif bars in the glove compartment of the car, in my backpack, in my purse, and in my gym bag… hey, you never know when your blood sugar is going to dip to a moderately hangry level and you need some Chocolate Almond Fudge goodness ASAP.
I don’t only take snacks to work and school, I definitely pack meals too. Here are some of my favourite meal foods:
- Crackers, cheese, and turkey or chicken.
- Egg whites and salsa.
- Salad – with any and every possible combination of toppings on a bed of romaine, spinach, kale, iceberg, or broccoli slaw.
- Cottage cheese and fruit.
- Greek yogurt + fruit + nuts or granola to assemble into a yogurt parfait.
- Vegetable, peanut butter, ham, or turkey sandwiches.
- Pita and hummus and vegetable sticks.
- Quinoa, chickpea, or couscous salad.
- Baked goods (this is even better when your mom makes them for you!)
- Cereal or oatmeal.