NC 4-H
Youth Development

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A Recipe for Life: Allen's Story

“Hello, my name is Allen, and I have been in 4-H for 8 years. These past 8 years have changed my life. The journey started 7 years ago. I was 8 years old and weighed a whopping 300 pounds. My mother told me “no,” but I was sneaking food that was easy with two teenage brothers and friends at home all the time. This is where 4-H came to my rescue by focusing that year on healthy living. The big difference came when I participated in a 4-H broiler project. The day my eyes were opened happened like this; I had waited two weeks past the day I was suppose to butcher the boiler hens. The weight they carried was so great that they could not walk.  When we cleaned them, I saw fat veins making their way into the heart, liver and other organs. The sight that day changed me forever.  With the 4-H focus on healthy living that year, I began to learn about nutrition, exercise and positive attitude. I lost more than 100 pounds, and gained my life back. As you may have guessed, one of my loves is still food. But now instead of fast food and junk food, I like gourmet foods.  I’ve learned herbs can add a lot of flavor and nutrition and few if any calories. I hope you enjoy my recipe; it brought hope into my life and won fi rst place at my county Favorite Food Show.”