Gorditas, translated as “fatty,” or a “little fat,” is not an insult; it is a nickname people call Mexican women with affection in Latin America, but especially in Mexico. It really is, look at the online slang dictionary if you don’t believe me! 

If you are not from Mexico or any other Spanish speaking countries, probably you are thinking how is it possible your boyfriend, your friends or even your own mother could call you FAT! Truly Mexican “Consejos” live happily being a “gordita” and as a happy “flaquita.”

Gorditas is a term of endearment

And if you are from Mexico, you know “gordita” is not a bad word, but you also know you are not as “flaca” as your cousin, Margarita, who’s wearing a beautiful strapless dress. Never mind that she just had her “quinceañera.”

Of course, she’s looking like a princess, but you could use her “quinceañera” dress for a Barbie doll.

Even though women are conscious of the obesity problems in Mexico, we always hear “Estás muy flaco, mi’jo, te hace falta comer más” (translated to mean “You are very thin, my son, you need to eat more”) and “Cómete todo, piensa que hay niños que no tienen que comer” (“Eat everything, think about all the children who don’t have food to eat”).

Gorditas: The best street food around

There is a Mexican street food called “gordita.” These tasty treats are a kind of pastry made of corn or wheat filled with cheese, beans, meat or almost anything you want. Mexican cuisine is famous for its deliciously unique recipes and not for helping consumers to eat healthier meals.

Most of its dishes have one thing in common; fat, lots of fat! Cheese, oil, pork fat, and cream are all ingredients part of one single dish. It is also known Mexican people love to celebrate and celebrations mean food and beverage.

Back in the day, when processed food wasn’t so easily accessible or the sightings of fast food industries, so fluent, our grandparents ate what they had and what they could afford.

Sometimes this could mean having only frijoles and tortillas, but you were grateful for that meal. Mexico, having low economic resources, associated being poor with being thin.

What does being thin mean in Mexico?

So, does this means Mexican women approve of being a little chubby or overweight? Not really, but we have accepted we as a culture of color, like being a little thicker. Latina women like meat on our bones.

Through the passage of time, being thin was interpreted as a weakness, something our grandparents didn’t want for their precious little grandsons and granddaughters in the future.

Nowadays, those grandsons and granddaughters are us: young Mexican women and men living in a country where, according to Fox News, 7 out of 10 Mexicans are obese. Those are scary numbers, as frightening as being called “fat.” So what can we do about this?

No más “fatty”

First of all, we have to stop defining, not only Mexican women but all people by their looks. No matter how someone appears on the outside, this doesn’t tell you who people are on the inside. Your looks do not define who you want to become or what you can achieve in life.

I came to learn we as women of color choose to keep hurtful comments from others in our minds. Given that we have the power to make up one’s own mind, I choose to listen only to the remarks which genuinely help me to grow as a Mexican woman as well as a human being.

 

My affirmation? Health, you are picture perfect!

Those are my mother’s words still ringing in my ear. She would look me in the eyes and tell me when you have good health, you have everything.

Yes, indeed; when you are healthy you can do anything, but people still ask, “Can you be a little chubby and still be healthy?” The answer is definitely! However, to stay in shape, you may want to take these simple suggestions to help you stay healthy longer.

Reshaping Gorditas! 

3Dancing to shed pounds

Can you wear double digit clothing and still get down on the dance floor? Sure you can and lose weight while doing it. I tell everyone about Zumba Dance Party as it is still a popular method of losing weight.

2Avoid the wrong food

Throughout my whole life, but especially as a young Mexican woman, it has been hard for me to avoid these delicious temptations. Even though I’ve fallen into the sins of Mexican food, here is one of my secrets: Measure!

While you can’t say no to tacos, you can decide how much you are eating. It is important you eat satisfactory food portions, but it’s totally up to you to supply your body what it needs to give it energy and for vital organs to function properly.

When in doubt of what nutrients you need, check with your doctor or your nutritionist.

1A gym on every street corner

Let’s say your co-workers forced to eat a bunch of quesadillas at lunch. By the end of the day, you’re feeling guilty and maybe even a little sluggish, so you think of ways to burn off both the guilty complex and the calories.

Do you remember the gym membership you got five months ago? Do you dare step inside or do you keep rolling? Because nobody has a membership and don’t use it, right? hahaha!

In reality, you don’t need to pay a hundred dollars every month in order to stay fit and healthy. There are infinite possibilities that are totally free!

  • The park is only three blocks away from your apartment… get out and take a walk; take your dog with you.
  • The playground is filled with stuff to climb on, to pull on and if you’re lucky, a basketball or tennis court.
  • What about jogging on the beach? You can burn more calories when you run in the sand than you can by cleaning your house, washing your car or climbing up and stepping down a flight of stairs.
  • You can occupy a lane at your community or club pool during your lunch hour or instead of happy hour.
  • Challenge your friends to a cross-city bicycle race and make it adventurous such as a treasure hunt.

On the other hand, there are plenty of lazy ways to lose weight, but they require you to eat the right foods and drink the right juices. It’s a lifestyle change you can live with.

Final thoughts

No matter what people say, women of color must love ourselves and always remember, you are special as you are uniquely beautiful. It’s normal to feel insecure sometimes, but you are as strong as anyone and as capable as everyone. If you want to change, it’s all up to you… you just have to do it.


Source:

Gordita http://www.chabad.org/theJewishWoman/article_cdo/aid/434332/jewish/Gordita.htm

Image: creative commons

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Karen Batino is currently residing in Tokyo, Japan with plans to study and work with project-based curation. The author earned her bachelor’s degree in Art Studies (interdisciplinary) with a minor in Film from the University of the Philippines, Diliman. Ms. Batino has previous work experience in a gallery based in Manila that focuses on contemporary art. Alongside her experience as a gallerist, Karen's dabbling in art book productions and attending art fairs in different countries in Asia.