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As we prepare to send our kids back to school with their new lunchboxes, remember the inside is just as important as the outside. New research says that the temperature in our children’s lunchboxes may not be right. A tummy ache is always the first sign.

Texas researchers found that 98% of the time the food was not as cold or as hot as it should be for safe eating, even if packed in an insulated lunch box or stored in a hot thermos.

When you’re packing your kid’s lunchbox in the morning, the ice pack is just as important as the fruit and the sandwich. And new research finds you might need more than one to keep your little one healthy.

COLD FOODS

– When you can, freeze it

Before you head to bed, take your child’s milk, juice or water and put it in the freezer. It can then serve as a second ice pack and help keep other foods cold. You can also do this with other foods as such as yogurt or soft cheeses. When making a chicken sandwich or other perishable mainstay, put it in the freezer as well, leaving the lettuce and tomato in the refrigerator to be added later.

– Keep it cold

– Make sure it’s insulated

– Double up on the ice packs

-Always use an ice pack or cold source. If you have room, try to use more than one. Remember that a frozen beverage can help.

SOME LIKE IT HOT

When cold weather hits, children sometimes like hot soup as part of their lunch. The best way to ensure that it stays at 140 degrees or higher is to pour boiling water into the thermos in the morning, letting it sit for several minutes. Then pour the hot soup into the container.

And the rules for packaging lunches don’t just apply to children. When taking leftovers and other items to work, don’t forget your own ice packs. You may need to schedule a trip to the store to buy some extras so that everyone in the family can eat safe healthy meals.

Source: CNN.com

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