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Queen of Soul Food's Grandson on Mission to Get Harlem Kids to Eat Healthier

NEW YORK, Aug. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- His mission is to get kids in Harlem to eat healthier to fight obesity and its consequences. Chef Lindsey Williams, grandson of Sylvia Woods, owner of Sylvia's famous soul food restaurant in Harlem, and author of "Neo Soul," a collection of traditional soul food dishes made with healthier cooking methods and low fat ingredients, is debuting a series of breakfast smoothies named after iconic Harlem figures this weekend during Harlem Week.

"I have battled weight issues most of my life," admits Williams. "The traditional African-American diet is high in sodium and cholesterol and low in fruits, vegetables and dairy -- unfortunately, this is the perfect storm leading to obesity, diabetes and stroke."

This weekend, working on behalf of the Harlem Healthy Living Program and the American Dairy Association and Dairy Council, Williams will introduce Harlem-centric breakfast smoothies at Harlem Week's Children's Festival, Saturday, August 15 and Sunday August 16 from 11 am to 6 pm in the schoolyard of PS. 175, located on 135th Street betw. Malcolm X and Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Blvds.

Williams' first effort to make a difference came in 2006 with the publishing "Neo Soul. His catering company by the same name follows the same principals -- great food made with healthy, nutrient rich ingredients. Since then, he has become a leading spokesperson, both in Harlem and around the U.S., for teaching families the basics of serving healthy foods while celebrating cultural diversity.

"Breakfast is extremely important, especially for kids," says Williams. "If you skip breakfast, you're not only more likely to snack later in the day, but kids who start the day with an empty stomach have a hard time concentrating in the classroom."

Williams says there is no excuse for kids to skip breakfast. "At home, breakfast is a simple as a bowl of cereal and milk, yogurt and granola or a simple smoothie. And at school, breakfast is offered free at all New York City public schools."

Williams is a huge fan of the "Breakfast in the Classroom" program, which has been, launched at many Harlem elementary schools this past year. The program delivers a healthy breakfast to students in the classroom during the first ten minutes of the day ensuring that ALL students start the day with a healthy meal without having to get to school early which is often difficult for working families.

In honor of Harlem Week's 35(th) Anniversary, Williams will debut his Harlem Healthy Living Smoothie Bar featuring smoothie recipes made with low fat dairy, fruits and vegetables baring notable Harlem names at the Children's Festival this weekend.

                                  Sylvia's Sweet Potato Smoothie
                                             4 Servings

    1 cup canned sweet potato (or one cup baked fresh sweet potato)
    1/4 cup plain or vanilla yogurt
    2 tbsp brown sugar
    1 banana
    2 cups low fat milk
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    Ice cubes

    Blend all ingredients on high until creamy.

                            Puff Daddy Banana-Nut Breakfast Smoothie
                                             4 Servings
    2 large fully-ripened bananas, peeled and sliced
    2 cups puffed rice cereal, such as Quaker Essentials Puffed Rice
    1 1/2 cups low fat milk
    1 cup low-fat plain yogurt
    4 Tbsp creamy peanut butter
    4 tsp honey
    1 tsp vanilla extract

    In a single layer on a plate, freeze the banana slices for at least
    1 hour (or overnight). Add the frozen banana slices, cereal, milk,
    yogurt, peanut butter, honey, and vanilla to a blender container.
    Cover and puree until smooth. Pour into 4 chilled glasses.

    Note: Freeze any leftover smoothie in popsicle molds for frozen
    treats anytime.

                                    Ella Fitzgerald Bluesy Smoothie
                                               2 Servings

    1 (6-ounce) container low-fat blueberry yogurt
    1/2 cup apple juice
    1/3 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
    1/3 cup frozen sliced peaches
    5-6 ice cubes

    Blend all ingredients with ice (amount of ice will vary depending on
    desired consistency). Pour into a glass and serve chilled.

                                   Apollo Apple Brown Betty Smoothie
                                               2 Servings

    1 1/2 cups fat-free or low-fat milk
    4 tablespoons plain low-fat yogurt
    2/3-cup applesauce
    1-teaspoon cinnamon
    2 tablespoon caramel topping

    Combine milk, yogurt, applesauce, cinnamon and caramel topping in a
    blender; blend until very smooth.

                                   Spanish Harlem Mango Smoothie
                                             2 Servings

    4-7 ice cubes
    2 cup (8 ounces) plain fat-free yogurt
    1 1/2 cup mango slices in extra light syrup, drained
    2 teaspoon sugar substitute (optional)
    Mango slices for garnish (optional)

    Place ice in bottom of blender. Add yogurt, mango and sugar substitute, if
    desired. Blend ingredients until smooth. Pour into a tall glass and
    garnish with mango slices, if desired.

The American Dairy Association & Dairy Council (ADADC) is a not-for-profit nutrition education organization funded by dairy farmers to promote the USDA dietary guidelines as they relate to dairy. Our mission is to deliver timely, scientifically sound nutrition information on the health benefits of milk, cheese and yogurt to consumers by working with schools, retail outlets, the media and health professionals.

SOURCE American Dairy Association and Dairy Council
Copyright©2009 PR Newswire.
All rights reserved

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