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Tired of pulling the same old sandwich out of that boring brown bag? It’s all too easy to get into a lunchtime rut that leaves you dreading what you have packed or heading out for overpriced and unhealthy fast food. If you are like most people, you are long past due for a brown bag makeover. Lunches can be nutritious, delicious, and quick and easy to make! Make lunch your favorite meal of the day with these easy ways to liven up lunch time.

  1. Go Bento! The Asian inspired bento box trend is an instant way to add variety to your lunchtime routine. By filling up the small compartments of a bento box, you pretty much guarantee variety in your lunch. If you don’t have an actual bento box (portable boxes with divided compartments), don’t worry, you can still have a bento style lunch. Simply pack several small containers with different items such as boiled eggs, edamame, fruit, and raw veggies with hummus. Not only is the variety of a bento lunch fun, it helps you get a wide array of nutrients.
  2. Recycle Dinner. It takes no extra work to double your dinner recipe. Try doubling your dinner recipes once or twice a week so you have some of those leftovers for lunch throughout the week. Pack leftovers in a mason jar or glass storage container with lid to make it easy to heat it up in the microwave without plastic’s chemicals. Just remember to be considerate of your office mates and stick to leftovers that are not so aromatic that they’ll leave an odor for the whole office!
  3. Layer the Right Way. Salads are often left off the lunchtime menu because they tend to get soggy by the time lunchtime rolls around. But the good news is that if you layer your salads the right way you can easily enjoy your favorite salads– no matter how late in the day your lunch is. All you need to do to make salads lunchtime friendly is layer the ingredients in the proper order. Using a glass jar or deep bowl with a lid, start with a layer of salad dressing followed by any other wet ingredients working your way from liquid ingredients on the bottom towards dry or crunchy ingredients at the top. When lunchtime rolls around just mix everything together for a delightful, crisp salad!
  4. Breakfast. Who said lunch can’t include your breakfast favorites? Break the lunchtime rules and fill your lunchbox with breakfast staples. Overnight oats, avocado on sprouted toast, and Greek yogurt parfaits are just a few of the examples of traditional breakfast foods that make for fantastic lunch options.
  5. Take Advantage of Technology. Even if you don’t have access to a microwave or fridge, the technology of double insulation can widen your options of what you can take to lunch! The double insulated mugs that have become so popular are good for more than just keeping your coffee hot. Try using one of these cups or mugs to keep soups or stews warm till lunch, or use one to keep a smoothie icy cold until lunch.

Now get out there and liven up those lunches!

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Dr. Candice Seti


California-licensed Clinical Psychologist, Certified Nutrition Coach, and Certified Personal Trainer

Dr. Candice Seti

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