The demonstrations-dubbed the Coqui the Chef Project-have two goals: 1) to help youth and their families create flavorful, healthful, and simple meals with fresh produce and other healthy ingredients from their local bodegas, and 2) to teach basic nutrition so that young people will know how to find healthier snacks before and after school. The project also aims to encourage bodega owners to stock healthy food items that may not previously have been available, such as whole wheat tortillas, low-fat cheese and yogurt, and fruit smoothies.
Coqui the Chef's visits to South Bronx bodegas will provide the area's young people and their families with the information and resources they need to improve their diets and lifestyles and enjoy long-term cardiovascular health, while savoring the familiar foods and flavors of home.
The American Heart Association's New York City Community Impact Grant was awarded to Coqui the Chef, as part of its ongoing effort to improve the cardiovascular health of the city's youth. Due to rising rates of obesity, unhealthy eating habits, and physical inactivity, it is likely that the next generation of New Yorkers will be the first to be less healthy and have a shorter life expectancy than their parents. In particular, an alarming number of Latino youth in the Bronx, where nutritious foods are not always readily available, suffer from high levels of obesity, which has been linked to heart disease, Type 2 Diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure.
Read more about our project here:
Coqui the Chef Launches Bronx "Bodega Adventures"
El Diario La Prensa:
Aprender a comer sano en las calles de El Bronx