Healthy Living! Lockdown lunch ideas for Limerick workers during lockdown

Eva Hill Hamilton

Reporter:

Eva Hill Hamilton

Healthy Living! Lockdown lunch ideas

Sourdough is a healthier alternative to regular white or whole wheat bread

Are you working from home during this lockdown? Do you find you are sitting at your desk much more?

It is always important to have a healthy lunch to keep up energy levels and support your immune system, but if you are like me; find you have a more sedentary lifestyle since lockdown, you might like to know some tricks to keep you going without keeping the waistline growing…

It might be tempting to pop out for takeaways or get food delivered, and while it is important to support local businesses, home-made lunches are always the best options. Make sure to be creative, vary your foods as much as possible to avoid boredom and to supply you with the much-needed diverse nutrients for your immune system. Don’t limit yourself on soggy sandwiches. In fact, if you had a carbohydrate-based breakfast like porridge, cereal or toast, it is a good idea to reduce starches for the rest of your day, as these will be converted to fat if not used up by exercise or activities, and replace them with vegetables.

You can turn dinner leftovers into amazing salads with some fresh salad leaves, fresh herbs, and crunchy seeds. I love Buddha bowls that don’t mix up everything into a salad but have heaps of different-tasting goodness to temp my palate. Make sure to have a good portion of lean protein – chicken, steamed salmon, eggs, or beans with a variety of fresh and fermented vegetables. Your salads shouldn’t be boring; jazz them up with different fresh herbs, sprouts and avocado or olive oil-based dressings.

Ideas for variety:

1: Sourdough topless sandwich – always coupled with a side salad and/or soup

  • chicken breast and pesto
  • Turkey and black /red currant jam with pumpkin seed butter or tahini for butter
  • Hummus & sun-dried tomatoes
  • Chicken & roast pepper slices
  • Roast beef slices & Tomato relish (Ballymaloe)
  • Smoked salmon & Tzatziki
  • Spicy quark or cottage cheese

2: Wraps - You could make thin omelettes, or large sized lettuce leaves would also work as nutritious wraps.

Fillings:

  • Strips of chicken / turkey, shredded carrots, cucumber, soy sprouts, and a teaspoon of oyster sauce (Thai Gold brand)
  • Roast pumpkin - cinnamon - butterbean paté with pomegranate pearls
  • Leftover roast vegetables, roast beef & rocket - a drizzle of balsamic vinegar
  • Thin omelette with spinach and cream cheese (especially nice wrapped into lettuce)

Add baby salad mixes to wraps and serve with cherry tomatoes or gherkins and soup.

3: Dips with raw vegetable sticks (carrot, turnip, mangetout, broccoli, cucumber, pepper)

  • Wilted spinach – garlic cottage cheese dip
  • Spicy quark / ricotta (scallions, paprika, caraway, salt & pepper)
  • Roast pepper hummus
  • Home-made Guacamole
  • Caramelised onion or smoked tofu and bean dip

4: Exciting additions:

  • Sprouted chickpeas slightly spiced (salt, pepper & smoked paprika)
  • Spicy, crunchy roast chickpeas
  • Raw kale and vegetable peel crisps (dehydrated in 50*C fan-oven)
  • Slightly toasted seeds and/or nuts with dried currants
  • Apple "doughnuts" (cored, sliced apple) with nut butter, sprinkled with granola

See evahillnutrition.com/