NEW YORK, July 26 One of the biggest health problems facing the United States today is childhood obesity. According to the U.S. Surgeon General, the percentage of overweight children in the United States is growing at an alarming rate, with 1 out of 3 kids now considered overweight or obese. Many kids are spending less time exercising and more time in front of the TV, computer, or video game-console. And today's busy families have fewer free moments to prepare nutritious, home-cooked meals. From fast food to electronics, convenience is the reality for many people in the new millennium.
"Parents need to be more responsible by saying NO to their kids' unhealthy food demands," says Paul Huljich, author of Betrayal of Love and Freedom and global pioneer in Organic foods starting in the early 1980's. "Children are our future and we are what we eat so let's invest in inspiring children to eat healthy, exercise and invest in themselves," Paul Huljich states. "We have a great challenge ahead of us and we should think of this season as Summer boot camp and educate not only our children but also ourselves to the powers of eating fresh, healthy food. What we eat has a direct link to our mind, wellness and awareness. Eating poorly will only upset the balance between ourselves and the fragile world in which we live in."
A recently issued report, Overweight and Obesity: Health Consequence, (published by the U.S. Surgeon General) addresses how childhood obesity has both immediate and long-term health impacts:
Obesity also results in many psychological and emotional problems, the most common of which is depression and alienation socially. Since the late 1970s, the costs related to obese children at hospitals have tripled. Nationally, we spend over $100 billion each year on healthcare related to overweight and obesity. The First Lady Michelle Obama has joined the crusade to end childhood obesity in coordinating a task force to invest $10 billion in the National School Lunch Program "Back to Basics!" Paul Huljich states, "What we eat directly affects the brain chemistry and its four neuro-chemicals which in turn effects our moods, thoughts, feelings and emotions. Poor eating habits is one of the primary causes of ADHD and depression amongst children. Improving the state of our children's health will create a lesser financial burden on this great country's distressed economy."
Preventing kids from becoming overweight means adapting the way your family eats, exercises and also how you spend time together. Helping kids lead healthy lifestyles begins with parents who lead by example. There are over 3,000 additives of which the top 12 are the following: Propyle Gallate, BHA & BHT , Potassium Bromate, MSG, Acesulfame, Aspartame, Olestra, Sodium Nitrite (Sodium Nitrate), Hydrogenated vegetable oils, Blue 1+2, Red 3, Yellow 6. Stay away from these as they are neurotoxic and poisonous. Also, encourage your children to exercise more, have fresh, healthy food in the house accessible and change your own eating habits to encourage your kids to follow suit.
If one were to look at Paul Huljich in early 1998, they would have been envious and say he had it all. He had a beautiful wife and three young sons, and was worth over $100 million. His 30,000 square foot mansion housed 16 bathrooms, a 10-car garage, 25 yard domed indoor pool, a large outdoor pool, tennis court, croquet lawn and anything else you could imagine. Yet at age 45 due to stress being left unchecked developed anxiety, depression and experienced a full mental breakdown. He was diagnosed with Bipolar disorder and stripped of his freedom and declared a ward of the state in his native New Zealand. However Paul Huljich views such material loss as a blessing in disguise. "I may have lost a fortune but I gained a richness of life," he says.
Now Paul Huljich wishes to share his story to help inspire others to not only fight back but also preventing themselves and their loved ones from falling prey to mental illness. As featured in CNN, New York Times Book Review, Psychology Today, Village Voice, Forbes.com, Organic Food News Today, and interviews in over 50 radio shows across the country, Paul Huljich's message is beginning to change the way in which we regard mental illness and also the stigmas attached. In publishing Betrayal of Love and Freedom (www.betrayalofloveandfreedom.com), Paul Huljich states, "I hope, most of all, that people will pause for a moment and reflect on where they are in their lives - and where they are headed. And I wish for my story to give them Hope."
Proceeds from the sale of Betrayal of Love & Freedom will be donated to his newly founded non-profit organization, The MWellA foundation (www.mwella.com), which focuses on promoting a healthy lifestyle of mind, body, and spirit.
-- Obese youth are more likely to have risk factors for cardiovascular disease, such as high cholesterol or high blood pressure. In a population-based sample of 5- to 17-year-olds, 70% of obese youth had at least one risk factor for cardiovascular disease. -- Children and adolescents who are obese are at greater risk for bone and joint problems, sleep apnea, and social and psychological problems such as stigmatization, poor self-esteem and bullying. -- Obese youth are more likely than youth of normal weight to become overweight or obese adults, and therefore more at risk for associated adult health problems, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke, several types of cancer, osteoarthritis, and longevity.