Easy swaps for a healthier lunch

Where a good breakfast sets you up for the day, it’s a healthy lunch that will carry you through. If you’re looking to kick start your way to a healthier lifestyle, making a couple of simple changes to your midday meal will make a big the difference. A nourishing lunch will help you by keeping you full and energized throughout the afternoon. That means no more afternoon cravings or post-lunch slump! Here are three quick and easy ideas to help you eat healthier at lunchtime.

1. Switch up your sandwiches

The good old sandwich is a solid lunchtime staple, but you can definitely make it healthier with your choice of filling and the type of bread you choose. By simply switching to whole grain bread you will have instantly added more protein and fibre to your day. If you’re feeling a bit fancy, try a Tuna Sushi-style Sandwich. Filled with silky cream cheese and with a wonderful crunch from the cucumber and carrot, these tasty little morsels will cause major food envy at lunchtime.

Alternatively, you could roll up your favourite sandwich fillings in a wholemeal wrap. Don’t forget to load it up with crisp layers of salad greens like cos lettuce and cucumber. And try swapping your margarine spread or butter for creamy hummus, which is packed with protein. If you’re not a fan of sandwiches then Cruskits, Ryvita crackers, or brown rice cakes are the perfect base to load up with avocado, hummus, tomato, cottage cheese or tuna. It’s so easy to get creative!

2. Tips for a healthier salad

Salads are the go-to option for a healthy lunch. But if a green salad leaves you feeling a little unsatisfied all you need to do is add a couple of extra ingredients to help you power through the rest of your day. The key is to add a mixture of protein, complex carbs and good fats. You can add things like quinoa or chickpeas to keep you feeling full for longer, and sprinkle through nuts and seeds for good fats and an extra dose of protein.

If you're roasting vegetables for dinner a simple time-saving hack is make a few extra (or save some!) and use in a salad next day. Just add some baby spinach and crumble through some feta for extra greens and protein. This Lamb, Tomato and Beetroot salad is a tasty option if you need a bit of inspiration to get started. With seared slices of lamb paired with juicy beetroot and pops of cherry tomatoes, this colourful salad is packed with nutrients and flavour.

3. Snack time

When you’re trying to make healthier decisions snacking where we often get tripped up. Having snacks on hand that tick the right nutritional boxes will help to curb those cravings and keep you feeling alert in the afternoon. Try whipping up this Muesli Bar Slice and store in an airtight container to enjoy throughout the week. It’s so easy to make and keep you feeling satisfied between meals.

Nuts are an easy snack and are perfect for when you’re on the go. It’s best to go for the unsalted varieties and try portioning some out into a container and only taking that. Fresh fruit is an underrated snack and is a rich source of vitamins and fibre.

Hard boiled eggs are another great way to get a dose of protein. They can be prepared a few days in advance and kept in the fridge, making them ideal for those busy days.  Seaweed snacks are a tasty alternative to chips and are also a source of iodine, which is an essential mineral for a healthy metabolism.