Picky eaters are notorious for leaving their plates unfinished or even barely touched. And, it can get worse when it comes to baon. When your picky eater is at school, you’re not there to make sure your child gets enough nutrition that she needs for the day. We know the struggle, and we’ve looked to find all sorts of tactics to get kids to eat more.
This school year, we might have just found our new secret weapon. It’s called the Yumbox, and we've heard Pinay moms and their kids love it. Its distributor is BrightBrands, a company run by Cheryl Sy, a mom to 6-year-old Clare and 2-year-old Gavin. Many of BrightBrands' products are items Cheryl herself found useful, and Yumbox was no different.
For Cheryl and her baon struggles, Yumbox was heaven-sent. “The first time I packed a Yumbox for my daughter was the first time that she ever finished her baon.”
What makes the Yumbox appealing is the baunan already comes with a tray of six compartments. You can pack a variety of food, snacks, and dips for one school day so there’s no need for multiple bulky containers. It also helps make her food more visually appetizing (you will be motivated to experiment yourself!). “I’m not a bento artist, but the Yumbox really helps make everything pretty,” said Cheryl.
The compartments are labeled according to food groups, so it helps parents pack a balanced meal -- grains, protein, veggies, fruit, dairy and a smaller, unlabeled compartment for dips and sawsawan like ketchup. Food preferences start early in life so by getting him used to eating veggies and fruits in food containers like Yumbox sets him up for a healthier lifestyle later on.
“It teaches kids the value of a healthy, balanced diet by trying to eat different types of food every day. It also teaches them the concept of serving size and healthy portions,” said Cheryl.
The main five compartments hold 1/2 a cup of serving each. This serving size complies with the Pinggang Pinoy food guide prepared by the Food and Nutrition Research Institute (FNRI). For kids ages 3 to 5, Pinggang Pinoy recommends 1/2 cup of cooked rice, 1/2 a serving of lean meat, 1/2 a cup of cooked vegetables and 1/2 to 1 whole medium size fruit (ex. banana or dalanghita).
In case you’re wary of plastic, the Yumbox is BPA-free, phthalates-free, and made with food-safe, durable materials. Each compartment also stays leak-proof -- no sauce out of place or leaking out of the lunchbox. “This was something my daughter was really happy about. She liked that her food wasn't ‘touching’ each other,” said Cheryl.
The Panino has four compartments with serving portions of 2 cups, two 1/2 cups, and a dip container. These bigger trays are great for packing sandwiches. For older kids (or envious parents like us), there's the Tapas, which has the option for four or five compartments that have a total volume of 4.2 cups. It can come with a plain tray or one with illustrations too.
“As parents, we are in charge of encouraging good healthy eating habits for your kids, so we should also always strive to prepare a well-balanced diet so we can help raise healthy eaters,” said Cheryl. “As a mom, I like everything about the Yumbox as it mirrors my belief on food education for kids. I was just happy that my daughter was eating veggies!” Cheryl added that her kids like to eat out of their baunan even at home. Here they are bartering and trading their snacks:
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Yumbox is available at Rustan’s Department Stores or send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.