If we could all eat the foods that we like based on taste, then we would be a fat nation. Oh wait, we already are! According to NBC News, nearly 40 percent of Americans are considered obese. If your Body Mass Index (BMI) is over thirty percent, you are considered obese. The BMI is calculated by taking your weight in kilograms and dividing it by your height in meters. With all of the processed foods and portion sizes that are three times what most countries serve, it's no wonder that we are a nation of fatties.

With very little effort you can learn healthy eating habits that will keep you fit and healthy!

The good stuff

Fish is an excellent source of Omega-3 fatty acid. Omega-3 helps with joint pain/stiffness; it can help lower your triglyceride levels and help prevent dementia and Alzheimers. If you don't like the taste of fish, experiment with different spices and dry rubs, I use a sweet and spicy dry rub with cumin, cinnamon, paprika, garlic, onion, and chili peppers. If you prefer, you can buy Fish Oil supplements to help keep you fit and healthy.

According to WebMD, Salmon is the best source for Omega-3.

Another good source of Omega-3 is in nuts and seeds. Almonds and Sunflower seeds are the top two heavy hitters when it comes to more bang for your buck. Along with being a good source of healthy fats (Omega-3), they are full of beneficial nutrients that your body needs to stay fit like vitamin E, which will help reduce plaque buildup in your arteries.

A magical fruit to add to your diet is Avocados. Yes, Avocado is a fruit, one of the healthiest fruits out there and also an aphrodisiac. The avocado offers a high does of monosaturated fat and potassium to help with your blood pressure as well as being a good source of vitamin's B and E, fiber, and folic acid.

Dark, leafy greens are another addition to your healthy eating. Kale, spinach, collard greens, and broccoli are all good sources of antioxidants which will help with inflammation, heart disease, and cancer.

Plus, adding a cup of veggies to your plate will not increase your waistline. There are few foods you can eat as much as you want without gaining any extra weight, so go nuts (almonds or sunflower seed, preferably).

Here's one you may not have thought of. Sauerkraut. According to nutritionist Natalie Rizzo, 70 percent of our immune system is in our stomach, which most men do not consider when thinking about healthy eating. Instead, we rely on how many situps and crunches we can do. Sauerkraut is an excellent source of organic probiotics, which will help with digestion.

The bad stuff

No one needs to be reminded of how bad junk food is for you.

Fast food, cookies, muffins, and doughnuts should be off of your menu for more than one reason. As we get older, these foods can affect us more as our bodies are already fighting the effects of a poor diet. If you must enjoy these tasty timebombs, try doing it a little differently. Love french fries? Make your own by baking them. You skip out on the oil that is used to fry them, and that is where most of the bad come from. Unable to resist your breaded treat? Again, try a healthier version by baking it at home and using gluten-free flour or other healthy substitutes for butter and sugar. I still enjoy a sweet treat now and then that I bake myself and skip out on all of the added chemicals that are found in processed foods.

Speaking of processed foods, another thing to avoid is canned soups or pre-packaged meals. All of the good that you get from whole or non-processed foods is taken out to make the food last longer, and that includes taste. Yes, you are not tasting the natural flavors of what you are eating, but instead, you are tasting the chemical makeup of that flavor. Not to mention all of the added sodium that will make your blood pressure skyrocket.

Bacon is another meat you should avoid or at least cut back on greatly. Growing up I used to love Saturday morning breakfasts with eggs, bacon, sausage, the works!

But the ratio of good vs. bad when it comes to bacon and fatty red meat is not worth the added waistline or rising blood pressure. I'm not saying cut out red meat altogether, I still enjoy a nice rare steak on the weekends, but not an entire ten to the twelve-ounce portion that you would normally get. Try cutting it in half and freeze the rest for next weekend, preferably in an air-tight freezer bag. A good cut of meat will be fine in the freezer for a week or two.

I saved the worst for last as I did not want to scare too many of you away. Another thing to try and avoid or cut back on is beer.

One beer a day is fine, according to Natalie Rizzo, but any more than that and you are increasing your risk of liver disease, high blood pressure, and possibly psychological disorders such as addiction. Not to mention the beer belly you will get.

Moderation is king

In everything we put into our body, moderation is key. I never wanted to stop eating my favorite foods, but I also want to live past fifty. The first thing to do is cut down on portion sizes. The United States meal portions are three times than most other countries. You don't need an eight-ounce piece of meat or fish. Try cutting it in half and adding a little more vegetables.

Instead of eating steak every night, throw in fish or chicken two nights a week. Stop eating out so much as we tend to overeat/drink when we are out with our friends.

Changing your diet will start you on a healthier path and keep you out and about and away from doctors and hospitals.

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