If thereâ€™s one meal that tends to be particularly unhealthy, itâ€™s the lunch we eat at work. Most of us donâ€™t bring our lunches to work because we feel weâ€™re far too busy to prepare and pack a lunch. And with time restrictions on your lunch break, you have to go out to eat somewhere thatâ€™s fast and convenient. More times than not, this means a greasy, unhealthy fast food lunch. Â Instead, why not read more to find some healthy lunch ideas for work.
When you combine unhealthy fast food with the sedentary lifestyle of the typical workplace (sitting at your desk for hours on end), you can start to pack on the pounds. More importantly, your health can begin to decline unless you do something fast.
Whatâ€™s the solution? The solution is to start bringing lunch with you to work. Now, I know what youâ€™re saying: I donâ€™t have time to make a lunch for work! These healthy lunch ideas all require either very little or no preparation at all, so anyone can find time to pack these lunches.
6 Healthy Lunches for Work
- Soup and a sandwichâ€”Okay, this lunch should only take you a few minutes to prepare. Just make the sandwich of your choice (ham and cheese, tuna fish, turkey, etc.), and bring a soup with you. They even have those microwave-in-a-can soups now that you just pop the lid off, stick in the microwave, and drink from. This makes for a nice, light lunch that fills you up without robbing you of energy.
- Peanut butter and banana sandwichâ€”Speaking of sandwiches, this is a bit of a different twist. Try a peanut butter and banana sandwich on wheat bread. If youâ€™ve never had peanut butter and bananas before, it might sound a little weird at first, but itâ€™s a surprisingly tasty combination. Itâ€™s also a very healthy and filling lunch. Again, this only takes minutes to prepare.
- Cheese quesadilla and chipsâ€”Cheese quesadillas are actually really easy to make. Itâ€™s basically like making a grilled cheese sandwich using a tortilla. Just heat up a skillet, and place a tortilla on it. Fill one half of the tortilla with cheese, and fold the tortilla in half. Heat until the cheese melts, and you have a quesadilla. It only takes a few minutes to make, and you can reheat it in the microwave at work.
- Leftoversâ€”Leftovers are the most affordable and convenient lunch option. Most of us have leftovers whenever we cook dinner at home. Rather than throwing them out, pack them up and take them to work with you. If you donâ€™t typically have leftovers, just cook a larger dinner so you have something extra to take with you to work.
- Frozen mealsâ€”Despite the negative stigma attached to them, there really are some great frozen meal options to choose from at your grocery store. You can get a good frozen meal for just a couple of bucks, making it a cheap and convenient lunch for work. Just make sure you read the nutritional information on the meals so you know they really are healthy.
- Saladâ€”You have all different types of salads you can prepare or purchase. You can make an all veggie salad, or you can add in some grilled chicken to make it a little more of a complete meal. Just be careful with the dressings. These can be very fatty. Also, avoid salads at fast food joints as they tend to have just as many calories as the burgers!
Lunch Ideas for DiningÂ Out?
There may be time where you donâ€™t have anything on hand to pack a good lunch or you want to go out for lunch with your co-workers. Here are some tips to make going out to lunch a little healthier.
- Try to avoid fast food whenever possible.
- Watch your portion intake. Many restaurants give you enough for two meals.
- If the restaurant is close enough, walk to it so you can burn calories.
- Avoid drinking sugary beverages with your lunch such as soda pop–especially if they have free refills.Â Â Drink water, oolong or green tea instead.
Do you bring lunch with you to work?
Here are some more ideas for food to pack with you to work:
- BBCGoodFood: Â Various options including recipes!
- EatRightOntario: Â Snack ideas to pack for school.
- Shape.com: Â Quick Brown Bag Lunch Ideas!
- Health Canada: Â Government website, but the ideas aren’t as boring as you’d image.