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Dear Jezzies: Some of us didn't know what quinoa was...

Not only did I not know what that was until maybe 2 years ago, I didn't know what kale was either. I don't think me growing up in a Mexican American household is an "excuse" for not knowing what these things are, but if you were to ask members of my family what those things were, they would most certainly look at you like you are stupid. This is not only a cultural thing, but a class thing. If you are not well-off or were not raised to prioritize vegetables and healthy eating, then you have to eat what you can afford and what you are used to. I am not saying that people cannot actively change their lifestyle, but it is hard and it takes time to get acclimated to healthy food if you were not raised to be mindful of what you are eating.

A quote from the "Obesity is due to to factors beyond our control" article from a shit head commenter:

It's not hard to cut down on your meat intake, stop going to Burger King, and to eat some fucking basic broccoli and quinoa with an egg or some shit.


1) It is hard to cut out your meat intake when you are raised in a culture where meat is valued. In my family, meat is king and meat is the best. Personally, I am sick of meat and the only kind of meat I really like right now is bacon and brisket. However, I was raised on barbacoa tacos, tamales, enchiladas. These things are high in fat and cholesterol and certainly aren't good for you. I won't get into the fact that when you have to live with your family after college, you WILL eat what is being made for dinner that day. If you can't afford to buy your own groceries, you will eat what is given to you so you don't starve.

2) Stop going to Burger King? If Burger King is right there and I am in a hurry, I will eat Burger King. If I see my dad eating BK as an 8 year old, I will eat BK. If it is acceptable to eat BK because everyone else around me is eating it, I will eat it. Again, you eat what is given to you and that becomes a habit. Everyone I knew as a kid would eat fast food and that is still true today. I'm sure there are many reasons as to why there is so much fast-food, but I'll let someone else get into that. Fast food is quick, easy, and it is accessible. I really don't need to get into how it is even more accessible for someone who is poor or middle class.

3) Back to this "quinoa" stuff. Listen, the idea of quinoa and kale and all that other stuff is funny to me. I eat kale sometimes. I haven't tried quinoa yet because I don't exactly know how to cook it or what kind to get and all that. This stuff is laughable to me because it represents a certain kind of person that is not me and it reminds me of the hipsters I see all the time in Austin. It also makes me realize that some people on Jezebel really live in a different world than I do.

I think these foods are great, but comments like this remind me of how privileged people are. If I always had access to quinoa and kale and all that, would I still be over weight? I don't know. I probably would be for multiple reasons.


Please, stop assuming we all have had the same experiences with food and with eating habits in general. There are things that can be done to educate people about healthy eating I'm sure, but telling people to eat some quinoa and stop eating BK is not helpful and it doesn't make me want to lose weight. It only reminds me that my relationship with food, my culture, and the way I was raised doesn't seem to fit into the "norm" of Jezebel commenters.

Also, Taco Bell and Chipotle are not Mexican food. But that is another story for another day and I just felt like saying that.


Thanks for reading.

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