Fun School Lunch Ideas

Banana Burrito Ideas

 

PB & J

  • Whole-Wheat Tortilla
  • 2 Tbsps. Peanut Butter
  • Banana
  • 1 Tbsp. Jelly

 

Nutella and PB

  • Tortilla
  • 2 tbsp. Peanut Butter
  • Banana
  • 1 tbsp. Nutella 

 

Fluffer Nutter Roll-Up 

  • Tortilla
  • 2 tbsp. Peanut Butter
  • Banana
  • 1 tbsp. Marshmallow Fluff

 

Directions:

 

Spread peanut butter over the tortilla. Peel banana and put it at the edge of the tortilla.  Spread the banana with your optional topping (jelly, Nutella, marshmallow fluff) and then roll up the tortilla.  Fold the ends to hold all the ingredients inside. For a yummy alternative warm up the tortilla in the microwave for 10-15 seconds for an ooey gooey treat.

 

Pair with these items to make a delicious lunch your child will love.:

 

Fruit cup

Yogurt

Non-sugary drink like Water, Bai, or Crystal Light

 

Italian Sausage & Broccoli Egg Muffins

 

Ingredients:

 

  • 1 lb. Italian Sausage
  • 8 Large Eggs
  • 1 Cup Broccoli Florets
  • 1/2 Tbsp. Vegetable Oil
  • 1/4 Cup Milk
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Powder
  • Salt & Pepper to Taste
  • Freshly Grated Parmesan Cheese

 

Directions:

 

In a large pan, fry up the sausage until it’s no longer pink.  Remove from heat and add broccoli florets

 

In a medium bowl whisk together eggs, milk, oil, baking powder and salt and pepper.

 

Lightly spray a 12 cup muffin pan with oil. Spoon the sausage mixture evenly into each tin. Pour the egg mixture over the top and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

 

Bake for 15-20 minutes at 375 F

 

Refrigerate lunch portions overnight and add to lunch box in the morning. It’s portable and yummy!

 

Sides:

 

Jello with fruit at the bottom

Apple slices

Milk

 

Ham & Mozzarella Sticks

Ingredients:

  • 4 Ham Slices
  • 2 String Cheese Sticks
  • 2 Green Olives
  • 2 Toothpicks

Directions:

Take two ham slices and wrap around one cheese stick. Add the olive to the seam and secure with the toothpick. 

Serves: 1

Sides:

Red Seedless Grapes

Mini Pretzels

100% Real Juice Box

 

Mini Calzones

 

Ingredients :

 

  • 1 Roll Your Favorite Biscuits 
  • 1/2 Ricotta Cheese 
  • 2 Cups Shredded Mozzarella
  • 2 tsps. Grated Parmesan Cheese
  • Dash Salt 
  • Dash Garlic Powder

 

Directions:

 

Open the biscuits and roll each one out flat with a rolling pin. If the dough sticks to the rolling pin take a little bit of flour and sprinkle over the rolling pin. 

 

For each biscuit add a 1/4 tsp. of Parmesan cheese onto one half of the flattened biscuit. Then add 3 Tbsps. of mozzarella and a tsp. of ricotta. Sprinkle with a little salt and garlic powder. Fold the biscuit over on itself. Crimp with a fork. 

 

Cook at 350F for 14-17 minutes or until the biscuit is golden brown. 

 

Sides:

 

Spaghetti sauce for dipping

Green salad with dressing

Iced tea

 

Pizza Muffins

Ingredients:

  • 2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 Tbsp. Baking Powder
  • 1/2 tsp. Baking Soda
  • 1/4 Cup Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Each Salt and Dried Basil
  • 1 Cup Cheddar Cheese, cubed
  • 2 Eggs
  • 1 Cup Yogurt
  • 1/4 Cup Butter, melted
  • 1/4 Cup Pizza Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Mozzarella, shredded

Directions:

 

Line 12 muffin cups with paper liners. In a large bowl, combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, and basil. Stir in cheddar cubes.

 

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, yogurt and butter until smooth. Stir into flour mixture just until well combined and no dry spots remain. Add batter into muffin cups, dividing evenly. Spoon 1 tsp. pizza sauce on top of each muffin; sprinkle each with shredded mozzarella.

 

Bake at 400 F for 20 minutes or until golden and a toothpick inserted in center of one of middle muffins comes out clean. Let muffins cool in the pan for at least 5 minutes before removing, then let cool completely on a wire rack. (Freeze muffins in an airtight container for up to 1 month; defrost at room temperature.)

 

Sides:

 

Spinach salad with dressing

Fruit punch

The Health Benefits of Tea

Have you noticed lately that drinking tea is becoming very popular? Many health sites are promoting the benefits of drinking more tea and less coffee. Tea is a wonderful drink. It tastes great, there are lots of varieties available and many cultures have been drinking tea for centuries.  Just look at how much tea people in countries such as China, Japan, India and Europe drink. This trend is now spilling over into North America like crazy. 

Green tea has been around for a very long time and is one of the best teas that you can drink for your health. It is known for helping your body eliminate free radicals, it’s great for weight loss and contains anti-aging properties. 

Most of the health benefits of tea come from EGCG, [Epigallocatechin Gallate] which is a very powerful and natural antioxidant. As you know antioxidants work to remove all kinds of harmful radicals from your body. Those which can damage your cells, cause cancer and reduce your lifespan.  Free radicals are also connected to the aging process which is why it can be slowed down by drinking Green tea. Another benefit of EGCG is that it helps to speed up your metabolism so that it is easier for you to lose weight. Plus drinking lots of green tea just makes you feel better overall. 

Green tea does contain caffeine, but not as much as coffee does. It also contains an important amino acid L-theanine, which is able to cross the blood-brain barrier. This is important as L-theanine helps to increase activities in your brain which help to reduce anxiety. So drinking more green tea when you are feeling stressed out is a good thing. 

All tea comes from the same plants – green, black and Oolong teas. The difference between black and green tea is the process that it goes through. Green tea does not go through a fermentation process – this process removes the EGCG – which is why it retains its health benefits. 

Green tea can also help you fight tooth decay, fight off all kinds of bacteria and infections. Studies have shown that green tea is great at repairing your immune system and helps with preventing heart disease and other illnesses. It can be helpful at reducing your chances of developing breast and/or prostate cancer. The studies that were conducted looked at Japanese people who drank at least 5 cups of green tea per day. 

The benefits of drinking black tea include helping you to reduce bad cholesterol and to healing your blood cells. Plus it helps to keep your heart healthy. 

The major difference between green and black tea is the amount of antioxidants it contains. Green tea is highest on the list, with black and Oolong teas coming in next. 

If you don’t like the taste of green tea you may want to try a variety that includes some mint in it. Always look for teas that are natural and contain no hidden chemicals. It really is worth your while, and your health, to drink several cups of green tea each day. Try switching it out for your morning coffee. You may not miss it as much as you think and you might realize that you just want something warm to drink each morning. 

Remember that the health benefits of tea are numerous and it is definitely something that you should be including in your diet regularly.

How to Walk for Weight Loss

When it comes to losing weight, a simple approach is going to help you yield results that you actually want. While it is easy to be led astray by promises from weight loss supplements, fancy gym equipment and more. All you really need to lose weight is to start walking. Combine this with a sensible eating plan and you will be well on your way to success. As with any exercise, when you first start walking, start off slowly and work up the amount of time you spend walking and the distance you cover. 

If you have any type of health or joint issue, always consult your doctor before starting on any type of exercise program. This way your doctor can give you any extra advice that will only add to your success. 

So why choose walking? Well, walking is a great activity for anyone at any fitness level, or age. It’s perfect for those of you who are really out of shape, or overweight. Walking is easy on your joints, and you can increase your walks according to your ability. 

On the plus side you don’t require any special equipment for walking. You should invest in a good pair of walking shoes though. Otherwise you may find that your feet hurt. 

There are many places you can walk all year long. If you live in a colder climate you can walk indoors at your local mall during the winter. Many malls open early to accommodate walkers, plus it’s perfect for moms with stroller’s too. 

If you own a dog, become the official dog walker. You can walk with your grandkids or kids or invite friends and neighbours to walk with you. Hey, you could even start a local walking club. This would make walking fun for you, and if you are walking with a friend it provides you with motivation to meet them and walk – you wouldn’t want to let your friend down by not showing up! 

After a couple of weeks, you will notice that your fitness level start improving. This is a good signal that it’s now time to increase the intensity of your walks. Either walk a little faster, or go a little further. As you improve you may also want to add hand or ankle weights as well. 

Another great way to increase your walking is to find some hilly terrain to walk on. See if you can walk up some nearby hills!

With so many options and so many ways to make your walking more fun and get more benefit from the time you walk, it just makes sense to include walking into your overall fitness plan.

As we mentioned at the beginning of this article, you need to pay attention to the foods you are putting in your body. This will have a huge impact on your overall weight loss success. Be aware of what you are eating, and your portion sizes. 

Try to eat healthy, fresh foods as much as possible. Just staying away from fast food and packaged foods will help you knock off those pounds. Why not start looking for some new recipes to try? You can easily find recipes online these days. Look for ones that are heart healthy, low cholesterol and are low in carbohydrates. To save money try to find recipes that use foods that are in season. 

Walking for weight loss is the perfect way to get started on creating a healthy lifestyle for yourself and your family. Remember to start slowly and then increase the intensity as your fitness level increase. Believe me, you will feel better, lose weight and start sleeping better. Who doesn’t want that?

Tips to Make Juicing Part of Your Healthy Diet

Have you seen the commercials on television advertising the benefits of juicing? You can buy a blender or food processor and fill it with fruits and vegetables and with the press of a button have your daily recommended intake of fruits and vegetables conveniently in a smoothie-type concoction. Juicing can be an excellent way to get one’s daily vitamins and your recommended amounts of vegetables. 

Adding vegetables to your juice is a wonderful idea for getting more nutrients. Any type of leafy green is going to give you a stronger flavor; if you want to mask the taste of the veggies, try using cucumbers. You don’t even need to peel them before putting them through your juicer, and they won’t overpower the taste. I use it as a great way to increase my intake of veggies such as spinach, to me it tastes much better as a smoothie instead of served up on your dinner plate. 

Bananas and papayas do not seem to do well in a juicer. You can still use them with juice, but it is best to stick them in a blender. They are very thick, and tend to work better when making fruit smoothies or any type of frozen dessert that you make. Use bananas in a blender such as the Nutri Bullet, it works really well. 

You can also mix leafy green vegetables with something sweet. Leafy vegetables have a strong taste and may be too much for you to start with, on their own. Luckily, juicing is a great chance to mix your foods; so temper that strong vegetable taste with something sweeter like apples or carrots. Plain water might work as well. Or you might like to try adding milk, almond or coconut milk are great choices.

Are you diabetic? Juicing can still be for you! You can juice so many different items that you’ll always be able to have a selection that does not contain too many carbohydrates or a large dose of sugar. You can also include milk or yogurt in your drink to up your dairy intake. Use Greek yogurt if you want to increase your protein intake. 

 

To lose weight quickly but healthfully, try juicing. Simply replace one to two meals per day with fresh green juice. There are countless recipes available online, but you can make your own by mixing a green leafy vegetable with one or two fruits. You will be getting more vitamins and minerals than the average American, but fewer calories. 

Whipping up a smoothie is a great choice for a quick afternoon snack. It will provide you with enough energy to get you past that afternoon slump until dinner time. 

Juicing may not be for everyone but it is not a difficult habit to form. With one simple purchase of a blender or a food processor, anyone can become a juicing expert. The health benefits and the convenience of being able to juice any foods you want don’t require anything except the willingness to push a button on a food processor.