The recovery of the people is tied to recovery of food, since food itself is medicine—not only for the body but also for the soul and the spiritual connection to history, ancestors, and the land.
Decolonize Your Diet will walk with you as you reclaim your culture by sharing recipes, cooking techniques, and discussions of ingredients. We believe that food is medicine and we share information about the health benefits of ancestral foods, herbs, and teas. We encourage you to talk to your elders, relatives, and traditional healers in your community to learn from their wisdom and knowledge. We honor cultural knowledge by contributing what we know. We encourage you to do the same.
As US-born Latinos/as, we have much to learn from the way our ancestors ate. Eating our ancestral foods can help us prevent and treat the diseases that result from adopting the Standard American Diet. The central tenet of our project is “La comida es medicina” [Food is medicine]. As Chicana professors, we have seen firsthand the effects of the Standard American Diet on our bodies and on the health of our family, our students, and our community. US-born Latino/a communities are facing a health crisis, most notably with diabetes but also with heart disease and many cancers. It is difficult to fight for our people and our culture if we are sick and sluggish. We believe that it is time to reclaim our cultural inheritance and wean our bodies from sugary drinks, fast food, and donuts. Cooking a pot of beans from scratch is a micro-revolutionary act that honors our ancestors and the generations to come.
What is decolonization?
Decolonization is the ongoing process to end oppression and servitude and to restore respect for indigenous knowledge and ways of life. Decolonization requires both spiritual healing and political resistance. To heal, we must acknowledge that Indigenous and African traditions in spirituality, music, literature, and food were never completely suppressed by the colonizers but kept alive, sometimes surreptitiously, in daily acts of resistance that include story telling, recipe sharing, and ceremony. Decolonization means reclaiming and honoring our histories, our stories, and our traditions as a way to fight for our common humanity.