High Point company wants to use art to encourage health

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HIGH POINT, N.C. — A new company in High Point is hoping to color the world with its art prints that encourage folks to eat smarter, think positively and exercise.

Paradigm Nutrition Inc., formed in late 2011, offers “nutritional facts in a nonthreatening, easy-to-understand way,” said Bill McKenzie, who owns the company with his business partner, Ted Johnson. “It just delivers an easy message to people.”

“Eat More Colors” is the simple message on a Paradigm Nutrition print that highlights all types of fruit from apples to watermelons. Another print, “Food for Thought,” lists several foods that affect thinking, including fish and leafy green vegetables.

“We know the horrible statistics out there,” McKenzie said. “Almost two-thirds of the adult population is seriously overweight, and we have childhood obesity in virtual epidemic proportions.”

The focus of the prints is to subtly create a life-change message in terms of nutrition, especially for young people, to help reverse the rising obesity in the country, Johnson said.

They use real fruits and vegetables and high-end photography from businesses in the Triad to make their products, McKenzie said.

The prints are 24-by-36 inches and 20-by-30 inches, but they can be produced in larger custom sizes. They are available on 100-pound paper and foamcore.

The business partners hope to grow their business throughout the Triad, including Winston-Salem, and eventually go national. They are expanding their prints to offer other ways to maximize health, including sleep and a positive mind. The prints are available for sale at paradigmnutrition.com.

“We’ll keep coming out with more,” Johnson said. “I’ve got 18 more on the drawing board now.”

Schools, universities, fitness centers, medical offices, companies and YMCAs have purchased and displayed Paradigm Nutrition’s products, McKenzie said.

Several prints were donated to Guilford County schools. Four are up in high-traffic areas for students, including the cafeteria, at T. Wingate Andrews High School in High Point. Print installations — four for each school — are planned at Smith High School and Dudley High School in Greensboro.

Paradigm Nutrition is in talks with school officials in hopes of getting its prints in all schools in the Guilford County system next year, McKenzie said.

Leigh Hebbard, the school system’s director of athletics and driver education, said the prints are attractive with simple messages “you might want for teenagers, and even younger than that, because they don’t want to get caught up in the technical reasons of why you eat this or that.”

Referring to news reports of obesity and poor nutrition in children, Hebbard thinks that it’s a good idea to get nutritional messages out to young people to help them think about what they are eating and whether they are making good choices.

“Not that it’s immediately going to fix all the problems, but you have to start somewhere,” he said.

Credit: The Associated Press.