Back to school – breakfast and lunch-box tips

It’s that time of year when school-aged children are starting back for their new semester. Are you one of those parents rushing around getting new school uniform, shoe fittings, books, stationery and sewing on name tags? You’re making sure that they have everything they need to be happy and do well in class.

Feeding their bodies with good nutritious food helps them thrive at school too. That’s where using raw honey can help.

A good breakfast

Eating a healthy breakfast sustains a child until lunchtime meaning they can concentrate in class rather than being distracted by hunger. They are able to participate in physical activity too, and less likely to reach for unhealthy snacks, which helps maintain a healthy weight.

Slow release foods are best for this like whole grains and fresh fruit. Try to avoid sugary breakfast cereals which give a temporary sugar rush. When your children ask for a bit of sweetness, raw honey is the best solution. It’s the only natural sweetener with added nutrients and health-promoting enzymes (over 200) plus it provides slow-release energy to keep them going through the morning.

Healthy breakfast ideas:
  • Porridge with strawberries, blueberries and a drizzle of raw honey
  • Cream cheese and grapes with raw honey on slices of wholemeal toast
  • Breakfast smoothies – green breakfast smoothie, mixed berry smoothie with chia seeds and mango smoothie

Don’t forget to lead by example and have a good breakfast with your children.

Lunchbox ideas

Healthy lunches are important to keep your children going all afternoon. Studies have shown that kids that eat food high in salt, sugar and bad fats do worse in test scores. Eating a nutritious, balanced diet keeps them out of the office of the school nurse too. Making their packed lunch colourful, varied and vibrant in taste and texture means that they won’t be tempted by less healthy options. Again a bit of healthier sweetness from raw honey can help. Add a sweet treat but don’t overdo it in quantity.

Healthier sweet snack ideas with raw honey
  • Greek yoghurt with some raw honey stirred in
  • Bliss balls (nut-free) sweetened with raw honey
  • Whole fruit or fruit slices (like apple) with a little container of raw honey as a dip
  • Raw honey and peanut butter or cream cheese sandwiches, made with wholemeal or grain bread and cut into bite-sized cubes
  • Honey flapjacks (with fruit) – see recipe below

Raw honey and memory

Eating unrefined sugar and carbohydrates can lead to an immediate sugar rush followed by lack of concentration and sleepiness a short time afterwards. This ‘brain fog’ can definitely affect a child’s performance in class which is why a slow release source of sweetness, like raw honey, is so important. Like all sweet things it’s best not to overdo it though.

Raw honey also aids the body’s absorption of calcium which is vital for brain cells to function properly. It also contains magnesium, potassium and B vitamins that help brain health. Read more How Raw Honey Helps Memory and Cognitive Function

Healthier honey flapjacks

Makes 10-12 squares

  • 150g butter (or substitute with coconut butter)
  • 250g raw honey
  • 250g rolled or jumbo oats
  • pinch of sea salt
  1. Grease a 20 x 20cm baking tin lightly and line with baking paper.
  2. Put the butter and raw honey into a saucepan and heat gently until the butter has melted. Use a wooden spoon to mix together.
  3. Add the oats and salt and stir until combined well.
  4. Pour and scrape into the tin and cook in an oven preheated to 180C for 20-25 minutes until lightly, golden brown. Don't overcook – you want the flapjacks to be a bit gooey in the middle not dry and crumbly. Cool completely and cut into squares.

If you make this let us know on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

And we’ve got more raw honey recipes here too