Previously, I shared a few quick and easy breakfast options, and I hope you gave at least one of them a try. I wanted to come back to do the lunch edition because I have for sure noticed that when you actually make time to eat breakfast, your metabolism kicks in and by lunch time you are so hungry it becomes difficult to focus on your work. We normally make sure the students have a snack time and they definitely receive a lunch, but are you making sure to get that extra energy boost in to make it through the day?
Reminder: Not eating can lead too:
*Extreme Weight Loss
*High Blood Pressure
*Lowered Immune System
So, what can you eat for lunch that is quick, easy, and won't have you ready to curl up on that comfy flex seating?
I've organized a few meals that are not time consuming to prepare and will get your energy up for the second half of the day.
ENERGY BOOSTING LUNCHES
Tuna contains thiamin, niacin, riboflavin, pantothenic acid, folate, B12, and B6. These are all B vitamins that help your body convert food into energy. Culinary Envy has a recipe for the "Best Ever Tuna Salad", and I would have to agree! If there's a certain ingredient that you don't care for, feel free to leave it out. Many of her supporters did just that and some even added their own spin to it, but we all agree that this tuna salad is the best!
If you are worried about how this lunch will travel, there are a couple options you can take.
1. Pack the tuna salad and bread separately.
2. Include a layer of lettuce as a barrier between the tuna salad and bread.
3. Use lettuce instead of bread, and turn this into a lettuce wrap.
One word. TACOS!!!! This is a lunch idea from Sweet Peas and Saffron that you can definitely prep ahead and eat throughout the week, or, make tacos for dinner the night before and bring the leftovers to work. What I especially like about this recipe is that it includes brown rice. Brown rice is considered a SUPER FOOD for many different reasons. Combine the benefits of brown rice with the vitamin rich tomatoes and immunity boosting onions and you are all set for an amazing school day.
Benefits of Brown Rice:
*Manganese (mineral) produces energy from proteins and carbohydrates.
*Selenium (mineral) plays a major role in the prevention of cancer, heart disease, symptoms of asthma, and inflammation.
*Magnesium is helpful for reducing the severity of asthma, lowering high blood pressure, reducing the frequency of migraine headaches, and reducing the risk of heart attack and stroke. Magnesium helps regulate nerve and muscle tone by balancing the action of calcium.
*Find out more benefits at GrowingNaturals.com
3. Garlic Parmesan Zoodles (Vegan/Vegetarian)
What in the world is a Zoodle!? Zoodles are pasta made out of zucchini and used as a replacement to noodles. Using zoodles is an excellent way to cut calories and carbohydrates. Zucchini is another vegetable packed with vitamin B, which helps to boost energy. In other words, this pasta alternative is not going to leave you in a food coma! To turn this meal from vegetarian to vegan, just leave out the parmesan cheese.
When making this meal you can either use a spiralizer and make the zoodles yourself, or purchase them. Either way, pack a few mints because while this pasta from Inspired Taste might be "guilt free", your students will thank you for not giving them a humongous whiff of garlic breath, when you bend over to help them with a problem.
4. Shrimp and Vegetable Stir Fry
What is it about seafood that makes me feel like I'm fancy? I hope seafood is a treat to you as well, and if so, this Shrimp and Vegetable Stir Fry from Cookin Canuck will definitely help lift your spirits. Shrimp contains B12 and Omega-3 Fatty Acids which are great for boosting energy and mood. This recipe can be made with a variety of vegetables and you can also use a brown jasmine rice for extra super (teacher) powers. Nom Nom Nom!
Can we first just support this recipe because it came from another educator? Thanks. Secondly, I tend to be one that loves a sweeter salad, and this Honey Walnut Power Salad from Pinch of Yum does not disappoint my sweet teeth...I mean...tooth. Look at it in all its glory! You may be worried that a salad isn't going to be enough, but since the walnuts are packed with those good fats people are always talking about, it will help you stay full. Your main energy boosters are going to come from the grains, grapes, and honey. In this recipe, Lindsay uses bulgar (grain) which helps repair muscles, lower stress, and sustain energy levels. Grapes are not only delicious in a salad, but they are also rich in energy and water content. Last, but not least, honey is a carbohydrate that is rich due to its fructose and glucose content, which makes it a high-powered, natural energy snack.
And there you have it folks! I have to admit, lunch is not as easy to just grab and go as breakfast is. It can be easy to fall off track and start ordering takeout or running to the nearest fast food restaurant on your lunch break...which I'm not 100% sure is allowed, but we all have done it once or thirty times. (Don't judge!)
If you, or someone you know, is a chronic lunch forgetter...please share this article with them! Additionally, I'd love to know what you pack for lunch. Leave me a comment below. :)
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