The competition was fierce, and the nutrition was high. Healthy Harold’s search for Australia’s healthiest lunchbox has ended in success with six delicious winning entries.
Queensland’s competition winner – Gordonvale youngster Darcy – created a munch-anticipated lunchbox with the help of his mum Laura.
No wonder Darcy loves his mum’s lunchboxes – they look and taste so good!
“They’re yummy and I love them. I love having lots of different food,” the five-year-old said.
The six winning lunchboxes were chosen from 167 entries Australia-wide and packed a punch with a combination of delicious snacks from all the major food groups, including grains, meat and alternatives, dairy and alternatives, fruits and vegetables. Entrants were asked to submit a lunchbox menu that was practical, fresh and affordable to prepare for school each day.
Darcy’s mum Laura, a trained chef, created a delicious lunchbox entry packed with plants, protein, wholefoods and quick and easy snacks that are both tasty and nutritious.
“Lunch is Darcy’s favourite meal,” Laura said. “Even during school holidays Darcy still wants a lunchbox, so I pack lunchboxes every day!
“My son had Healthy Harold and the Life Education program come to his school last year, so that was a good healthy eating influence, but ever since they were old enough to crack an egg, my kids have been helping me to cook and prepare food.”
Life Ed Queensland CEO Michael Fawsitt said getting children involved in packing nutritious lunch options helped set them up for a healthy future.
“Around a third of a child’s daily nutrient intake comes from their lunchbox so it’s important that children have a lunch that not only helps them concentrate during the day but contributes to an overall balanced diet,” Mr Fawsitt said.
“School is a time when children start to make independent choices about their lifestyles, and we know that starting young is the key to developing good eating habits.”
Woolworths nutritionist Felicity Curtain said packing a healthy lunchbox need not be a daily struggle.
“Involving your children in lunchbox preparation not only lightens the load but also helps build their interest in good food so they have the energy they need to learn and grow,” Ms Curtain said.
Darcy receives a $250 Woolworths eGift card, while his school – St Michael’s at Gordonvale – wins a $250 Woolworths eGift card and a $500 Life Ed voucher towards a program session (or to spend in the Life Ed online shop).
With his win, Darcy plans to help his mum with the next grocery shop, putting watermelon, chocolate and nori sheets at the top of the list.
And does he sometimes have a treat in his school lunchbox?
“Yes, crunchy chocolate chickpeas!” Darcy said.