South American Diets

South American diets offer a rich tapestry of flavors and ingredients, shaped by indigenous traditions, colonial influences, and a diverse geographical landscape. Over the years, the diet has evolved, incorporating new elements while maintaining traditional staples.
  • Indigenous Period: Reliance on maize, potatoes, and legumes as staple crops. Consumption of llama, guinea pig, and local fish for protein. Use of indigenous fruits like guava and passionfruit.

  • Colonial Period: Introduction of European livestock like cows, pigs, and chickens. Adoption of wheat and rice as additional staple grains. Spices like cinnamon and nutmeg introduced.

  • 19th Century: Immigrant influences from Italy, Spain, and Germany introduce pasta, sausages, and new baking techniques. Coffee and yerba mate become popular beverages.

  • Early to Mid 20th Century: Urbanization leads to easier access to a variety of foods. Increase in canned and processed foods. Beef becomes a major staple, especially in countries like Argentina.

  • Late 20th Century: Fast food and international cuisines gain traction. Heightened awareness of health leads to a focus on fresh fruits and vegetables.

  • 21st Century: Growing interest in indigenous and traditional foods, like quinoa and amaranth. Emphasis on sustainable and local produce. Trends like gluten-free and vegan diets become more prevalent.

South America's diet has evolved over centuries, shaped by its native biodiversity, colonial history, and contemporary global influences. While keeping its roots in indigenous foods like maize and potatoes, the diet has embraced a host of influences, making it as varied and vibrant as the continent itself. This provides a fascinating glimpse into the region's diverse cultural and historical layers.
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For those eating a modern diet, we recommend adding the below vitamins to your daily routine.