The rising obesity rates in the Latino community may have numerous factors, such as medical, environmental or economic. But, sometimes it may have its roots in the home, particularly the kitchen: Homemade dishes filling up the home and soul with its hearty aroma of spices, hot peppers and meats. Problems from the outside world seem to melt away when sitting before a steaming hot plate of pan fried crispy corn tortillas filled with carnitas (shredded pork meat) with a trickle of salsa ranchera, sour cream, side of lard fried pinto beans and fried rice. And to wash it all down, a nice cold refreshing pineapple soda or cola or, more likely, Mexican beer.
A delicious combination that is repeated on a daily basis, which inevitable leads to health problems associated with high fat, sugary foods. Yet, banishing them forever is not a feasible solution for most, because these dishes are part of the culture and strongly fused with familial bonds. That is why transforming them into a healthier version by replacing high fat ingredients with fat-free or low fat versions, baking instead of frying and sparkling water with fruit instead of soda, can remain without hurting us. Future generations will thank us.