As a teen, most of us don’t even care if we’re eating right, or begin to understand the implications of poor eating habits.  As we age, however, we do begin to notice the effects of improper exercise, poor eating habits, and how they affect our health.  Today, as the baby boomers begin their retirement years, health concerns and questions are on the rise.  These aging boomers are more concerned than any previous generations about their good health, their ability to keep their good health, and how their diet affects their health.

The easiest place to affect our health is through our eating habits; in fact it’s the most effective solution to better health, sharing the spotlight with exercise.  What about our food intake?  What choices do we have to make eating a healthier occurrence?

Fruits and vegetables are a great place to start.  There are so many choices in the filed of fruits and vegetables, that being picky isn’t even a consideration here. It does not matter where your location, the time of the year, or the method of preparation, there are fruits and vegetables to suit the most discriminating taste

The choices in fruits and vegetables run the gamut in color preference, leafy versus compact, fresh and raw, or freshly picked and cooked.  There are fruits and vegetables high in flavonoids, anti-oxidants, or just plain high in flavor.

What about as a snack?  Do fruits and vegetables meet the snack requirement for taste?  We already know that they’re good for us, but if we’re going to snack, we want something that tastes really good.

There are fruits and vegetables that fill that bill, quite successfully.  What about celery?  Celery with pimento or peanut butter is quite delicious.  Or, you have the broccoli and cauliflower combination with ranch dip.  That’s a snack that any other snack would be hard pressed to surpass.  In the fruit section, you have so many snack choices it would require you to spend hours debating which one is best.  Apples, oranges, mangos, bananas, peaches and pears, and this just begins the list.

One of a southerner’s favorite snacks would be baked sweet potato.  Now, this is normally consumed with large amounts of butter, but doesn’t have to be, in order to be good.  The baked sweet potato can simply be peeled and eaten straight from the oven and it’s still delicious.

Back in the fruit section, you still haven’t covered plums, grapes, raisins, watermelons, cantaloupes, or honey dews.  My, my, I didn’t realize there were so many.

We haven’t even discussed fruit options that would require us to cook.  These are just the fresh and raw options available, most year round.  By the time you run the gamut with these ideas, you should be ready to start all over at the beginning.

You should have enough options now for snacking, that healthful snacking can become a standard, not an exception for you.  These ideas do not by any means encompass all options; these are just simply the most popular local favorites if you live in the South and in Alabama.