FLS reporter Katie Thisdell serves up news on local food finds, tales from home cooks and inspiration to help you have fun in your own kitchen.
Paula Deen’s diabetes announcement
As we learned last October, when Paula Deen booked a cookbook tour stop at the Fredericksburg Wegmans, there are a lot of Paula fans in this area.
Deen is loved by many for her down-to-Earth Southern charm and recipes that don’t require a ton of fancy-schmancy ingredients. The thing is, many of those recipes require a whole lot of sugar and fat, something some cooks and nutritionists have said over the years might not be the best thing to be promoting, given the country’s problem with obesity.
Well, today, Deen publicly announced that she has type-2 diabetes. According to information made available by the National Institutes of Health, type-2, or adult-onset diabetes is the most common form of diabetes. Family history and genes play a large part in its cause, but low activity level, poor diet and excess body weight around the waist can increase a person’s risk.
On the Today show this morning, host Al Roker asked Deen if her diagnosis would change her cooking habits at all. She had this to say:
“I have always eaten in moderation,” she said. “You know, people see me on TV two or three times a day and they see me cooking all these wonderfully Southern, fattening dishes. That’s only 30 days out of 365,” she said. “And it’s for entertainment. And people have to be responsible. Like I told Oprah a few years ago, honey, I’m your cook, not your doctor. You are going to have to be responsible for yourself.”
Today’s public announcement comes three years after Deen first received her diagnosis, and coincided with news that she is now a paid spokesperson for Novo Nordisk, the pharmaceutical company that supplies her diabetes medication.
Deen and her two sons are now part of an ad campaign for Novo Nordisk called “Diabetes in a New Light,” which aims to offer recipes and lifestyle tips to help people manage their diabetes. Bobby Dean is also appearing in a new show on Cooking Channel, “Not My Mama’s Meals,” in which he attempts to lighten up some of Paula’s dishes.
Of course, another celebrity chef who visited Fredericksburg not too long ago–Anthony Bourdain–has been criticizing Deen for years for the nutritional value of the food she promotes. As he told Eater.com, in an interview published yesterday, when asked what he thought about the announcement:
When your signature dish is hamburger in between a doughnut, and you’ve been cheerfully selling this stuff knowing all along that you’ve got Type 2 Diabetes… It’s in bad taste if nothing else.