The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition | VOL. 7

Food Patterns of the Southwest

Publication Date Mar 1, 1959


I N THIS day of rapid transportation, television and radio communication, widely separated groups of people know and use foods and dishes previously considered typical of certam regional groups. Thus, there cease to be “typical” diets except for those in more isobated areas with limited shopping facilities. The earliest settlements in the Southwest were made by colonists from Spain and Mexico. They found the nomadic tribes of Indians getting their food supply from wild plants and animals. In addition the more settled groups cultivated fields in which they grew corn, beans, squash, pumpkins, and peppers. As the settbers and the Indians mingled each acquired some of the others’ eating habits. The devebopment of ranching, agriculture, and the natural resources (such as potash, gas, oil, and uranium) has brought into the state people with different nationality and regional food patterns. Contacts between these different groups introduced new foods but, as is true in all cultural groups, certain foods and recipes typical in the diet of parents and grandparents continue to be used, some daily and some on holidays and special occasions. Due to limited employment opportunities in the state for low income groups many Indians and Spanish Americans move into other areas for seasonal employment. When these people come to the physician for medical treatment which includes modification of the diet it is impontant to interpret in terms of their food pattenns. The purpose of this paper is to discuss the typical foods and their preparation, ...


Therapeutic Diets Special Occasions Food Patterns Earliest Settlements Food Supply Wild Animals Radio Communication Groups Of Foods Cultural Groups Limited Facilities

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