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Old 01-07-2008, 06:18 AM   #1  
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Default So I've been doing really well the past 2 weeks...

But now that school's back from winter break, I don't know what to do for lunches.
The lunches served at my school are very high calories/fat/and everything else unhealthy.
I'd bring my own lunch, but I have last lunch, so whatever I bring will be too cold/warm and squished. (My locker's jammed and nobody's doing anything about it, no matter how many times I pester the custodians...)
I borrowed my friend's thermos, but she's only letting me use it today.

At least I'll have some of my minestrone today. =D
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Old 01-07-2008, 06:42 AM   #2  
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Hey! You can still stay close to your plan. Regarding lunch in the cafeteria, you might be able to exercise portion control there--choose the best of the foods they offer, but smaller portions. E.g., if they are serving mac and cheese, ask for "half a serving" instead of the whole scoop or spoon, or whatever. Can you find salad that you can add dressing to, instead of already dressed? What vegetables do they have? For example, creamed spinach can be high in calories--again, ask for half a serving.

For bringing your own foods, you could get yourself a supply of those food containers--like Glad or Ziploc make. That could help solve the squishing problem when your food is in your pack. And fruits like apples, oranges, clementines--they do pretty well. And how about buying a thermos for your soup? They are not very expensive.

Of course, you have to plan ahead...

Good luck!

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Old 01-07-2008, 09:54 AM   #3  
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I'd definitely go with brown-bagging it. Even with portion control, school cafeterias aren't generally known for their low-fat food prep techniques, not to mention all the sodium in the prepared/cold-plated food.

Get yourself a decent lunch bag that won't squish your food (ie. don't literally use a brown bag!), you can get good insulated cloth ones, some of them even have a semi-hard shell to protect the contents. Invest in your own thermos, (go for the stainless steel one - costs a little more, but they work better, and never break - I've got one that we've used for 7 years now, so it was a great $20 investment), and get a few of those little re-usable ice-packs to keep your food cold. I pack 2-3 school lunches a day, and manage to send pretty healthy lunches, with hot/cold stuff. My kids and I like wraps made with whole-grain wraps and low fat cold cuts, like turkey. Homemade soup is great, whole wheat pasta, leftover casseroles, etc. You can even take a big bowl of salad if you use a size/shape of container that will fit in your lunch bag.

Might be time to make a bit more of a stink about the locker issue. If pestering the custodian isn't working, it's time to go over his head. Maybe your folks could call the principal, and request that either your locker gets fixed post-haste, or you get a new one assigned. Where the heck are you supposed to keep your coat and books if you can't get into you locker?
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Old 01-07-2008, 09:55 AM   #4  
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and the storage problem - get a couple of freezer packs - the small ones - and tuck them into your lunch bag [you DO have an insulated lunch bag, right?]. make sure that whatever you put in there is cold, along with the freezer packs, and you should be good to go!

also, things like small cans or bags of tuna don't need to be refrig.

and i'm TOTALLY agreeing with JayEll's food container suggestion. one of these companies [i think it's Ziploc] makes 1-cup containers. i have a HUGE stash of them. glad [i think] USED to make 1/2 cup containers, but i can't find them anymore.

in fact, right now, i have my insulated lunch bag packed with a 2-cup container of salad, two small pieces of roasted chicken, 1/2 cup yogurt and berries, 1 c roasted zucchini.
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Old 01-07-2008, 12:09 PM   #5  
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I third and fourth brown bagging it...fill up a bunch of ziplocs and pull them out! Put them in a lunch bag, and clip it to your backpack. You may have to get creative (add some bars, maybe, or go with sturdier fruits) but you can totally do this!

On days when you just can't pack anything, though, I bet the cafeteria has at least SOMETHING healthier...I was never aware of it at my school, because no one ordered it, but ours had salads and even grilled chicken sandwiches...so just like in a fast food restaurant, there are better choices to be made. Just don't, whatever you do, go WITHOUT lunch...you'll come home starving and might eat more than you really want to.
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Old 01-08-2008, 12:01 PM   #6  
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I totally feel your pain in terms of lunches being too cold/warm. I'm incredibly neurotic, I think, I tend not to enjoy room-temperature meals; even if I just have a sandwich I usually stick it in the microwave. And I'm in university, I bet I know what your cafeteria is like! (French fries as far as the eye can see?)

What I usually try to do is work with what they've got. Things like.. grab an un-breaded chicken burger and just toss the white flour bun so I have something hot and fresh that feels like a MEAL to me. Then bring a handful of almonds and some fruit and or veggies and water or sugar-free juice from home (or whatever you like to eat!).

Also, at my high school they had a little area with healthy foods in it, but I tended to turn up my nose at a lot of it since it didn't seem very fresh. But if your school has a little fridge with veggies/salads/decent stuff, try to find something you enjoy from there that would be less fattening than the grease-soaked regular foods.

Good luck, and congrats on the 14 lbs darling!!

Last edited by Jelbb; 01-08-2008 at 12:34 PM.
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Old 01-08-2008, 12:34 PM   #7  
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Everyone has made such great suggestions, so I will just say I agree with them...I just wanted to say that there are some things that you can get that don't need to be refrigerated e.g. the Starkist tuna kits. They are about 310 cals (I think) and come with tuna, crackers, lowfat mayo and relish. There are also things like unsweetened applesauce and lowfat/nonfat puddings. Don't forget things like Fiber One bars too. Good luck!
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Old 01-08-2008, 12:47 PM   #8  
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Do you have a microwave? You could get some of the microwavable soup bowls. I don't know if you're in high school or college. At my high school, there was no microwave in the cafeteria, but I was friends with a few teachers and they'd let me use the one in the teacher's lounge. And my husband's college has a microwave in a different building than the cafeteria.

It was already mentioned, but those lunch packs that don't require refrigeration are a good choice, too. Try pop top fruit cup cans or the sandwich-in-a-can kits (I used to see them at Wal-Mart).
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Old 01-09-2008, 07:42 PM   #9  
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Definitely invest in a thermos. Most of them have 2 containers inside so you can use 1 for soup with lots of veges in it and one for a hot entree. Sometimes if you don't have something hot, you don't feel that you had lunch and so you will be tempted to look for something else to fill your stomach...
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