While it may seem simple enough to pack a nutritious work lunch, all too often, time-poor office workers fall in to the trap of buying treats like burgers, sushi and ‘healthy’ salads.
And for those who do make the effort to prepare lunch, in many cases what they have packed contains only a small portion of the nutrients and energy requirements they need for optimal functioning.
So, to help break down the process and make it a little easier, Sydney-based dietitian Susie Burrell has shared her foolproof five step formula for packing the perfect lunch every time.
‘The meals and snacks we purchase on the go contain up to double the calories of a meal we would prepare at home,’ Susie told FEMAIL.
‘So to put it most simply, one of the easiest and most powerful things we can do for our health is to get into the habit of packing lunch. And this simple formula will ensure that you get the right balance nutritionally every single time.’
Sydney-based dietitian Susie Burrell has shared her foolproof five step formula for packing the perfect lunch every time
1. PROTEIN RICH MAIN
‘Your preference may be for leftovers; a wholegrain wrap, some brown rice and veges or a jumbo sized salad but whatever your preferred lunch is the key is to make sure it contains at least a palm sized serve of lean protein,’ Susie said.
‘Salmon, tuna, chicken or turkey will help keep you full for several hours.
‘Leftovers work especially well as you will find a hot lunch will keep you full and satisfied for a much longer period than a few pieces of sushi or a simple salad.’
‘I use wraps to make a brekky wrap on the go or as a light early lunch with turkey, cheese and salad for just 22g of carbs & not crumbly like some wraps,’ Susie said
‘Fresh fruit is a source of fibre, natural sweetness and plenty of vitamins and minerals,’ Susie said.
‘With gorgeous fresh fruit in season now, adding a container of berries, melon or a small apple or banana offer the perfect low calorie snack to enjoy with lunch or as an energy top up in between meals.’
‘Planning is the key to dietary success and Sunday is the best day of the week to prep, plan & take control of your nutrition for a big week ahead,’ Susie said
3. PROTEIN RICH SNACK
Susie said that even if you do not need a morning snack, chances are by mid-afternoon you will be feeling peckish between 3pm and 4pm.
‘The key is to aim for snacks that contains at least five to 10 grams of protein as well as some good quality carbs to keep you satisfied until dinner,’ Susie said.
‘Good options include a couple of BOUNCE Bites, cheese and crackers or a BOUNCE Energy ball that contains up to 8g of protein and is a perfect pre-workout option.’
Susie said that even if you do not need a morning snack, chances are by mid-afternoon you will be feeling peckish between 3pm and 4pm
4. HANDFUL OF NUTS
‘We can all benefit from an extra serve of the good fats found in nuts, but the issue for many of us is controlling our portions,’ Susie said.
‘Pre-packing our nut serves is an easy way to get the benefits of nuts without overeating.
‘Another option is to choose a BOUNCE Plant Power Energy Ball which contain at least 30 per cent nuts and will combine the benefits of adding nuts into your diet as well as a serve of plant based protein.’
‘We can all benefit from an extra serve of the good fats found in nuts, but the issue for many of us is controlling our portions,’ Susie said
5. DRINK WATER
‘Simply taking a bottle of water with you and keeping it handy will increase your water consumption on a daily basis,’ Susie said.
‘Keeping well hydrated is crucial for energy regulation and weight control and we all need to drink more, especially in summer.’