Less Junk, More Good-for-You Food: How to Pack a Better, Healthier Lunch

Bringing your lunch to work is a great way to save money and get balanced nutrition. But are you making these common mistakes with your brown bag lunch? Here's how to pack delicious, healthy lunch (16 Photos)

Arricca Elin SanSone on Sep 5, 2012 at 3:55PM

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Less Junk, More Good-for-You Food: How to Pack a Better, Healthier Lunch

Tom Kelley Archive/retrofile/getty images

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Mistake: Calorie-Packed Beverages

Down a can of soda at lunchtime and you’ve consumed 150 calories and zero nutrients. “There’s also emerging research about liquid calories and the fact that our brains don’t register them like they do when we eat food,” says Melissa Dobbins, registered dietician and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Talk about empty calories! “Those extra calories add up.”

What to Do: Skip the soda, bottled lemonade, iced tea, energy drinks… Water is best. You can add a drizzle of juice or a dash of drink mix (you don’t have to use the whole packet) if plain ol' water it’s too boring. Other options: flavored sparkling water, plain coffee or tea.

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