Empacho: The Act Of Overstuffing Your Face

El Botija... funny in theory

Lately things had been going so well.  Rather than greedily scarfing down as much as food as possible as fast as possible, like I normally do, I’d been making a conscience effort to pace myself when eating.  You know, chewing rather than only swallowing mouthfuls at a time.  I’d even finally noticed that all the Valentina salsa I eat just makes me feel hungrier and therefore eat more, and I had been trying to steer away from getting immediately back up to serve myself seconds.

I’d done all this for two main reasons.  One, of course for my health and to try and lose a few pounds.  I mean ya sé que para llegar a ser el mismo flacucho de antes no va ser nada facíl, but I’d hoped this was at least a start.  Joking around about being el Botija is one thing… having the shoe and the rest of the outfit actually fit is something completely different.  And two, because I’d noticed Edgar eating just as fast and almost as much as me in smaller portions.  He’s even taken to pouring Valentina salsa on a plate and dipping anything from crackers to chips in it.  At first it was cute, then I started feeling all guilty and stuff when I saw all those commercials about getting fit and moving y quien sabe cuanto más… you know the ones with First Lady Michelle Obama and Beyonce, even the damn little cartoon characters Maya and Miguel!  I’m surprised they haven’t brought Dora La Exploradora into the mix yet.  Well anyway I thought I should set a better example.

Yesterday though I just couldn’t help myself.  My sister had made a big old batch of her always just right pico de gallo – with jalapeño peppers and avocado mixed in; my parents had barbecued fajitas de pollo, beef and sausage; and my mom had made her special chile de molcajete.  I tore it up, even though I had already had a full serving of Kung Pao chicken moments earlier, and topped it off with some homemade gingerbread and coffee.  When I walked out of the house I was stuffed.  ¡Empachado! The shirt I’d bought several months earlier and finally fit into was now once again feeling like it was going to rip down the middle of my panza at any given moment.  We stopped at the grocery store and walked around a bit picking up healthier food for the rest of the week, but not even that helped.

I didn’t remember what the remedios were for empacho and I was too lazy to get up and research it, too lazy to even look them up on my smart phone.  Instead I lay in bed imagining myself in el Botija’s clothes having to have it let out on the sides, with my panzota as hard as a rock, unable to sleep and thinking how and why I didn’t stop myself.  In the back of my mind though I could still hear myself saying “it sure was good though!”

I guess I need to try harder.

2 thoughts on “Empacho: The Act Of Overstuffing Your Face

  1. Story of my life, hermano. Not to be negative, but I’m pretty sure this will be a struggle for me until the day I die. The only way I will have a healthy relationship with food is if I’m forced – like sent to a fat camp where I have no choice. LOL. Ay, it’s frustrating.

    As for “empacho” – My suegra didn’t seem to believe it was caused by over-eating necessarily. I wonder if the belief is different in El Salvador than in Mexico.

    Anyway – if you want her advice, here is one of the rare audio tapes I have of her from when we were getting along and she agreed to an “interview”…


  2. lol… now where was that audio last night when I was in so much pain! No kidding about the lifelong struggle. It’s been an uphill battle for me toda la vida, pero I’m a lot more comfortable with my panzota nowadays 🙂

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