Research has shown that students can learn better when they are well-nourished, and eating healthy foods for student is associated with higher grades, better memory and alertness, and faster information processing.
One reason is that foods rich in fiber, protein, and healthy fats, such as eggs, yogurt, apples, and oatmeal, keep you full longer and provide enough energy to focus and stay alert throughout the day.
As a student or parent, how do you find time to pack lunches that are healthy, delicious, and don’t take hours to prepare? A straightforward way to make sure your student has enough of the nutritious foods they need is to pack foods in every color of the rainbow.
Eat a rainbow of healthy foods
Naturally colorful foods like blueberries and red peppers contain antioxidants, vitamins, fiber, and many other nutrients that promote healthy growth and help prevent problems like obesity, tooth decay, iron deficiency, and osteoporosis. For example, yellow and orange fruits and vegetables are rich in vitamins C and A, which prevent cell damage, promote healthy joints and vision, and lower cholesterol. Green fruits and vegetables such as spinach, asparagus, and avocado are high in vitamins K, B, and E, which improve digestion and promote healthy bones.
Check out the list below for meal and snack ideas from every rainbow color that will satisfy even picky eaters and provide the nutritional value you need! Raw versions of fruits and vegetables usually contain the most vitamins and minerals.
Sliced strawberries, cherries, apple slices with natural peanut butter or almond butter, raspberries, watermelon slices, boiled sweet potato slices with cinnamon, cranberry juice, tomato slices with salt and pepper, pepper slices
ORANGE AND YELLOW foods
Pineapple slices, watermelon balls, baby carrots with ranch dip, peaches, dried mango slices, oranges, yellow bell pepper, lightly salted pumpkin seeds, roasted pumpkin, fresh papaya
Sugar chips, kiwi, celery sticks with peanut butter, honey slices, avocado slices with salt, green grapes, cucumber salad with tomatoes and Italian dressing, peas, zucchini slices, broccoli, kale or spinach salads, sauteed bok choy
BLUE AND PURPLE foods
Blueberries, blackberries with low-fat yogurt, prunes, grapes, eggplant, parmesan, raisins, pomegranate juice, baked whipped cream
Banana slices with peanut butter, roasted cauliflower, pear slices, white peaches, hummus dip, sautéed mushrooms, white bean dip with wheat crackers, hard-boiled eggs, and coleslaw.