Health and Wellness – School lunches and food allergies

At the beginning of the school year I received a list of peanut free “healthy” snacks that I was allowed to pack for my children’s’ snack time or lunch. Of course, I lost the original list so I went to their school today and asked for another copy. When I picked it up I was astounded by the poor nutritional choices that were offered on the list. This motivated me to create a better peanut-free snack list for parents — and of course, all of you!

This is an important part of my life because my son Jonah suffers from a severe peanut allergy. I want him armed with the best knowledge about foods that he can eat safely; parents and also their children with allergies need to be aware of foods and snacks that are suitable and which are not.

When packing food for myself and my children, it is important to me that it is “real food”. I consider real food to be: 100% whole grain, made from natural sugars, fresh fruits and vegetables, dairy products, seeds, dried fruit, and more a product of nature than a product of manufacturing.

When you are choosing snacks for yourself or for your children, please keep these important tips in mind: More tips and recipes click here

  • Stay away from low-fat and fat-free foods (they are usually filled with more sugar and chemicals to enhance the flavor).
  • If you don’t know what an ingredient is, don’t eat it.
  • Sprouted grains are the best because they are less heavily-processed.
  • Read labels carefully and make sure that foods are truly 100% whole grain; often times white flour is labeled wheat flour.
  • Just because it’s organic doesn’t mean it’s not junk food.

Here is a list of Peanut-Free Snacks:

  • Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (any are good and remember to get 5 servings in a day)
  • Cheese
  • Plain Greek Yogurt
  • Plain Yogurt
  • Hard Boiled Eggs
  • Honey
  • Unsweetened raisins
  • Dried Fruit (check to make sure it is not processed in a factory with nuts)
  • Sun Butter (Sunflower butter)
  • Hummus (be sure it doesn’t contain pine nuts)

And if you missed it, here’s a link to our video about food allergies.

 

Sarah Kuretzky, M.A., CPT, CHHC

 

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