Minority Obesity

Minorities tend toward obesity more than white folks. And with obesity comes health consequences.
And sometimes, this contributes to racial tension.
The reason for this article is to show how a changing food-heritage...creates minority-obesity. 

As a rural white family in the 1960s, we raised our own food and livestock and had enough to eat, to give member of the family their own portion of meat at mealtime. Our meals seldom had more than one source of meat. 

Poorer minority families in earlier times could seldom give each person a portion of meat.
Rather, they would put what meat they had into the main dish, be it a soup or stew, a savory pastry, or a kettle-dish. 
The meat was mixed in with the starches and vegetables so everyone got a little meat. 

So, I've read statistics on minority obesity and Type 2 Diabetes, and recall recipes that my minority-friends serve. 
Most minority savory dishes include meat, while many similar white-folk dishes don’t. 

My baked beans have no meat in them, not even bacon.
I might get odd looks at a minority BBQs because of my baked beans. 

Here’s the key to my equation: Poorer people, decades ago, made combination meals with the meat mixed in. 
They took those recipes into the next generation. 
A few generations later, their descendants can afford to have individual portions of meat at mealtime. 
But for some reason, the meat in the bean, greens, potato or rice dishes didn’t go away. 
It is still there, along with full portions of a central meat dish. .
Hence, more calories in each meal and more Type 2 diabetes.

But the same thing can happen with white folks that have second-helpings of meat at every supper.
(if calories were alien creatures, they would be call Klingons)

Heathier meals have just one source and one helping of meat. 
Is this an overlooked factor in minority obesity? 
Is nutrition-history a part of any minority studies program? 

Overweight people die younger.
No fancy ending.  

Eric J. Rose
Photo: mcnackskitchen.com
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