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Paula Deen waits 3 years to announce her diabetes

Queen of fried food Paula Deen has just announced she has type 2 diabetes … three years after her diagnosis. Too bad she didn’t have the guts to actually help prevent diabetes’ skyrocketing rates.

Paula Deen, the Food Network star with big hair and a big appetite for butter and fried foods, announced today that she has type 2 diabetes—a diagnosis she received three years ago.

I’m disappointed—angry, even—that she chose to keep this quiet for so long. It’s pretty hard not to conclude that she was more concerned about her calorie-heavy cooking empire than the health of the millions of viewers on whom she’s built her reputation.

She claims lack of “good information” for her delay in talking about having this (largely preventable) disease, which has reached epidemic proportions. According to the CDC, nearly 2 million people received a diabetes diagnosis in 2010. It now affects nearly 26 million people, or 8.3 percent of the U.S. population—with another 79 million teetering on the edge with prediabetes.

That’s 105 million people you could have influenced, Paula.

Money over health?

Seriously, Paula: You expect me to believe it took you three years to come up with decent information? You, with personal access to Dr. Oz and any other nutrition-minded source you may have consulted? You’re sure your slowness had nothing to do with keeping your comfort-food masses happy and your new—and undoubtedly lucrative—partnership with Novo Nordisk, the pharmaceutical company that makes the diabetes medication Victoza?

I appreciate her new message that high-calorie, butter-laden foods should be eaten in moderation. I appreciate that she now plans to offer lightened versions of some of her classics. I appreciate that she’s overcome adversity in her rise to fame and fortune. I appreciate that she now wants to “bring hope to other people.”

I’m just sorry she didn’t have the courage to do it sooner.

Discuss this Blog Entry 3

on Jan 17, 2012

Wow. Her timing seems a double bummer: to wait so long to share, and to suddenly step up with the news once she lands a big pharma contract... Disappointing

on Jan 17, 2012

Im not sure about this. I think that it was her choice to tell about her condition. I know that people are angry, but if you think about it we still would have watched her shows and tried her dishes even if we knew that she was diabetic. I think that she has the right to some privacy if she wants it. I believe that now that everyone knows that she will have alternative recipies for her food, but I do not think that we can chastise her for her choices. She is a remarkable woman who is making people feel good and teaching them new ways to cook.

on Jan 18, 2012

Paul Deen is not responsible for anyones health but her own. People need to take responsibility for themselves and make their own choices. I love cooking and teach classes. I make a variety of dishes of all kinds and learn to manage my diet and exercise so I can have rich foods occasionally. When teaching classes I am not responsible about how often anyone decides to make or how much they want to eat a certain dish, that is absolutely absurd. When asked how I stay thin I tell them I don't eat like this all the time it is a comfort or a treat. People be responsible for your own choices and stop passing the blame when you are in control of what you put in your mouth.

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