Food practices, dietary patterns, and leisure among Mexican Americans in the Midwestern U.S.

Maggie M. Phan, Monika Stodolska

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Changes in diet that have occurred in the last several decades in many developed countries have contributed to high obesity rates and an increasing prevalence of chronic diseases among immigrant populations. This study, conducted in the Midwestern U.S., examined changes in food practices and dietary patterns among Mexican immigrants and investigated how leisure was related to their food practices and dietary patterns. The study was based on in-depth interviews with 23 Mexican immigrants. The findings showed that immigrants prepared foods of their culture using both traditional and new techniques, excluded other foods of their culture unavailable in their local environment, and consumed foods that were new to them and which they became familiar with in the new country. Following immigration, most interviewees stopped growing food as part of their leisure, and cooking became less fun and was no longer a leisurely activity as a result of time constraints and conflicting family and work schedules.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)590-607
Number of pages18
JournalAnnals of Leisure Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Dec 2020


  • Food
  • Mexican American
  • diet
  • immigration
  • leisure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Geography, Planning and Development
  • Cultural Studies
  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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