Latin America Travis Chapman Emily Cecil
Region • Latin America consist mainly of Mexico • Central America starts below the Yucatan peninsula and ends at South America • Often lumped in with Latin America • Regions share a great deal of characteristics with each other
Religion • Before Spanish most were of Mayan and Aztec religions • Polytheistic • Sun god is main god in most ancient culture • Other gods also existed which were based on nature • Gods were more of a personification • Other aspects of religion based on nature • Seasons changing • Agriculture
Religion • Spanish missionaries brought Catholicism • Slow growth in first 10 years • Rapid conversion after the vision of Mary at Guadalupe • Nine million converted in 8 years. • 75% of Latin America is still Roman Catholic and even more in Central America • Influences holidays • Some Central Americans still practice ancient Mayan religion
History • Aztec, Mayan, Toltec cultures • Depending on point in history and region • Started to for 8000BC • Golden age in 250 AD • Society • Agricultural • Cities and civilizations • Some great monuments and religious cites remain • Great Astronomers and mathematicians
History • After Spanish arrived cultured gained some European influence • 2/3 Mestizos: Indian and Spanish ancestry • Only 1.5% speak ancient language • Used to inhabit southwest region of U.S. as main cultural group. • Ended during mid 1800’s • U.S. government wanted to clear land of natives • Usually brutal and inhumane • Continued even to the Great Depression • Mexicans forced back to Mexico • Occurred after a mass emigration from Mexico during
Family • Patriarchal. • Family is main lively hood • Good of family often comes before good of self • Mother is often a homemaker • Starting to change as women enter work force • Especially true in U.S. • Boys and girls often raised differently • More traditional family structure.
Traditional Food • Ate indigenous found in the area • Depended on the region • Commonly eaten: • Multiple varieties of chilies • Tomatoes • Corn: A staple food. Reason for corn tortilla dominance • Legumes: many types of beans • Game meat • Squash • Very little, if any, fat or oil
Spanish Influence • Besides religion and language, Spanish influenced the food as well • Rice and wheat • Now staples with corn and beans • Rice is always with beans • Flour tortillas common in northern regions • Garlic and onions • Cinnamon and sugar • In many popular Latin American desserts • Hogs • Distillation • Tequila: distilled blue agave plant • Kahlua: coffee flavored rum-based liqueur • Mezcal: distilled maguey plant • Sometimes served con gusano (with the worm)
Current Food Trends • Two meals a day • Light breakfast • Large lunch around 2-3 in the afternoon • Main meal • A family gathering • Corn, beans, and rice staples • Nearly every meal • Potatoes, tomatoes, chili peppers, onions, and greens also eaten • Less often and in smaller quantity. • Meals are usually just one dish • Caldos served with tortillas on the side • Sopas-Secas: Casserole type dishes • Traditional meal pattern • 4-5 meals for more well off families • Meat is eaten when available • Depends largely on finances • Meat is often grilled over high heat • Cheaper cuts of meat eaten often • Cooked slower and in moisture to tenderize
Therapeutic Food • Food as medicine practiced in some rural and poor areas • Hot and cold equilibrium • World must stay in balance • Hot and cold food eaten in equal amounts • Hot and cold conditions exist • Hot: pregnancy, diabetes, indigestions • Cold: pneumonia, colic, empancho • Foods considered the opposite temperature are consumed as a cure. • Some foods seen as a cure • In a prescriptive sense; not preventative • Examples: • Chamomile – cure colic, menstrual cramps, itchy eyes, and insomnia • Oregano – fever, dry cough, or asthma
American Culture Adoption • Some immigrants acculturate more than others • Migrant farm workers keep to more traditional food • Both consume more fat • More acculturated: fast food and snack food • Less acculturated: more fat added to traditional dishes • Later generations become very acculturated • Often show little, if any, partiality to traditional food • Diets high in white breads, cereals, sodas, red meats, and American type cheeses • More acculturated Latin American eat out often • No ethnic group eats out more often • Prefer fast food and kid friendly restaurants
Health Risks • High fat diets especially in second generation • Diabetes • 2x more likely than white • Comorbidity with: • Heart disease, hypertension, angina, incontinence, arthritis, immobility, and impaired vision • Calcium and riboflavin deficiency • Due to low dairy consumption • Milk is viewed as a juvenile drink • Low in • Vitamin A & C, thiamin, niacin, B6, folate, phosphorus, zinc, and fiber • All in high levels of traditional diet.
Counseling • Often can’t afford biomedical healthcare • Men don’t admit to disease • Modesty is crucial • Men likely prefer men caregivers and women prefer women caregivers • Lengthy explanation will likely fall on deaf ears. • A direct approach is best. • May not speak English proficiently or at all • Client may not be comfortable • Interviews can get “lost in translation” • A considerable portion of immigrants may still used traditional healing • Mostly emotional • Should not interfere with biomedical therapy
Dominican Republic • Contains Oldest city in the Americas • Has retained many of its basic component food ingredients • Has added foods introduced from Spain, Italy, Africa, Japan, etc.
Historically speaking; • Third-world, yet more modern than US in certain aspects; fashion, culture, history, and diversity. • It's cultural foods include: yucca, yautia, platano, bacalaito, rice, beans, fruits, vegetables, coffee, hot cocoa, and beer.
The "New" vegetarian culture • Pictured is "Moro" black beans and rice, Tayota cooked with tofu, sweet fried plantains, and cucumber salad.
Another one • Pasta with cheese, avocado salad, and tostones (fried green plantains). This pasta is similar to Italian food, but it is flavored uniquely in the Caribbean.
Getting hungry? • Pinto bean Moro, sauted spinach, onions and mushrooms, and slices of avocado. The foods are simple, but the tastes are tantalizing. It's a good thing the main meal is eaten at lunch.
Caribbean BeansArroz con abichuellas • Steamed rice (I choose to use long-grain brown rice)2 cups dry • Pinto beans, 2 cans • Sofrito, 2 Tbsp (This paste is made of 1-onion, 1-green bell pepper, 1/2 bunch cilantro, 1 clove garlic, 2 Tbsp olive oil, 1/4 cup green salad olives with fluid, Adobo to taste and can be refrigerated for a few weeks). • Tomato sauce, 2-3 ounces • Sauté the tomato sauce with the sofrito for a few minutes on medium heat. When flavors are wafting up to your nose, add the beans and 5-6 oz of water. Allow to cook on medium till gently boiling, turn down heat and allow to simmer 5-10 minutes more. Place a layer of rice on plate, scoop some beans over it, enjoy.
References http://www.topuertorico.org/culture/foodrink.shtml http://www.dominicancooking.com/1370-about-dominican-cooking.html http://latinfood.about.com/od/cuba/p/cuba_food.htm Kittler, P. G., Sucher, K. P., Nahikian-Nelms, M. (2012). Food and Culture, 6, 221-260.