Blog post written by,
Yaneth Beltran, RD/LDN, CEDRD
Being in the COVID 19 pandemic has been one of the most challenging experiences for everybody. The pandemic has been affecting levels of anxiety and depression and putting students at a higher risk for mental distress which significantly affected people with eating disorders. After being at home and somehow adapting to the quarantine, it’s time to go back to school again and face challenges related to eating at school.
Here are some comments I have received from my clients:
“I prefer to have fun with my friends” or “the school line is so long” or “school choices are not good” “eating in front of others is difficult” or “I do not want to bring big meals and eat them in front of others.” I completely understand that! At times, it’s very stressful to take care of ourselves especially when stress and anxiety are present. This is the reason why I decided to put together some lunch ideas that will help facilitate the process of going back to school and eat simple, but nutritious meals.
1. Peanut butter and Jelly sandwich (PBJ) and a fruit:
Ingredients: 2sl of bread, 2 T peanut butter, 1 T jelly.
How to make it: Spread the peanut butter and jelly on each slice of bread. Then, cut the sandwich in half to facilitate biting into it.
You could also be creative and make your own original PBJ sandwich adding other ingredients like a banana or an apple. You could also have a fruit on the side.
This sandwich will provide all three macro-nutrients; proteins, carbs, and fats.
2. Turkey and cheese sandwich:
Ingredients: 2sl of bread, 3sl of turkey, 2sl of cheese, 1 T honey mustard dressing or mayonnaise, 2 slices of tomato, 2sl of lettuce.
How to make it: spread mayonnaise or dressing on one slice of bread, top with lettuce and tomato and then add the turkey and cheese. Then, close the sandwich with the other slice of bread.
This sandwich will provide all three macro-nutrients; proteins, carbs, and fats as well as vegetables.
Packing school lunch is very important especially because the brain uses more energy than any other part of your body. Thinking and learning are important activities that could be affected by not having enough nutrients. Also, there is a connection between nutrition and the onset, severity, and duration of depression and other mental illnesses.
Bottom line, let’s help our brain perform properly by having lunch at school/packing simple meals!
YANETH BELTRAN, RD/LDN, CEDRD
Eating Disorder and OCD Registered Dietitian
I take a holistic approach to wellness by providing nutritional counseling to clients that want to establish a healthy relationship with food. I am a compassionate person, who believes in the power of the therapeutic relationship between clients and professionals. For a FREE phone consultation and more information about nutritional counseling, please call me directly at 954.773.3139. Services available in English/Spanish and Online