Sunday, January 22, 2012

Please don't fry Paula Deen

Last week comfort food queen, Paula Deen, announced she was diagnosed with Type II Diabetes three years ago. The not surprising announcement came out this week as she began promoting a diabetes drug, Victoza

I do not know Paula Deen. I do not know much about her cooking style. I simply know that she is a celebrity cook and after reading many, many blog posts about her, I discovered that she invented the Krispy Kreme Burger. Have you looked at that thing? Oh my. 

I was diagnosed with Type II Diabetes in May of 2008. A day I'll never forget. I was devastated. I felt as if this diagnosis had shortened my life by 25 years. In tears, I called Camo-Man. In my mind, I was preparing him for becoming a widower early. With the exception of a dear friend who is a registered dietitian, I told no one else for a week. I needed time to process my emotions. 

What would I have done if I was Paula Deen? Forget that fact that she has a cooking show promoting Southern Comfort food. She's a woman who was dealt a blow no matter how you look at it. I cannot blame her for keeping it quiet while she processed the prognosis and found her diabetic path. 

However.... Anthony Bourdain said it best in August of 2011 when discussing Paula Deen:
"The worst, most dangerous person to America is clearly Paula Deen. She revels in unholy connections with evil corporations and she's proud of the fact that her food is f---ing bad for you. If I were on at seven at night and loved by millions of people at every age, I would think twice before telling an already obese nation that it's OK to eat food that is killing us. Plus, her food sucks."

Point Bourdain. However, Deen claims she's always promoted moderation. Again, I do not know. I don't watch the cooking channel. Ask Camo-Man, he'll be glad to tell you I can't cook. 

Eva & William Moore
However, I will note again that Type II Diabetes while labeled a disease of choice is not a choice for me. I did not choose this. Type II Diabetes can be caused by various combinations of family history, obesity, inactivity and age. I've never been obese. I've never been inactive. Oh my, I am getting older (darn it!), but yes, Type II Diabetes does run in my family and it runs deep. As the family genealogist, I know. My great-grandfather, William Mose Moore, was a Type II Diabetic who used to sneak ice cream behind my great-grandmother's back. My grandmother, Gladys Moore Cronister, was a Type II Diabetic who needed my mother, another Type II diabetic, to give her insulin shots. 

I do not claim to be perfect. My eating habits were horrible as a youth. However, I have amended my youthful ways - even before being diagnosed. Can I blame Paula Deen for keeping her diagnosis a secret for 3 years? No. She didn't choose diabetes. I don't know anyone who would. I can only hope that by having another diabetic bring her diagnosis to light it will help educate the world on Type II Diabetes and help us all to learn more about this disease. 

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