So in foodie news, Paula Deen was diagnosed three years ago with Type II Diabetes. She continued to star on a cooking show that promotes "classic Southern cuisine", such as deep-fried dressing and Krispy-Kreme bread pudding. Now she's signed on as a spokesperson for Novo Nordisk promoting diabetes medicine as the solution and says she doesn't plan on making any changes to her cooking show. It is common knowledge that obesity and diet are the main causes of what used to be called adult-onset diabetes, but is now showing up in children. Generally, I don't care what celebrities do unless it involves torturing dogs, sexually exploiting children or something equally reprehensible. Still, Paula bugs me because the last thing that people in the United States needs to hear is that they can take medication instead of taking direct responsibility for their health and giving up the butter-coated deep-fried Coca-cola coffee cake with buttercream frosting. So what are your thoughts? Does she deserve some Deng-style loving sideways with a cast-iron skillet or no?
My favorite has been what Anothony Bourdain's been saying about her. Things like calling her the most dangerous chef in America, and also calling out her failure to share her disease while promoting unhealthy eating.
His latest tweet is the best:
"Thinking of getting into the leg-breaking business, so I can profitably sell crutches later."
My favorite part? Anthony Bourdain was a HEROIN ADDICT and he's giving somebody shit for cooking with butter. Bitch, please. He cooked at Les Halles. Red meat, butter, cheese...French. And let me give you non-southerners a lesson: she isn't exclusively cooking "classic Southern cuisine." Her ingredients can be picked up at any Walmart in the country.
It's because she's Southern and therefore perceived as stupid. The Barefoot Contessa cooks with lardons and fromage, and she's cooking in the refined style of the French. Paula cooks with bacon and cheese and she's out to murder children and promote obesity. Nobody is telling you to watch her, eat anything she cooks, or buy her diabetes drug. She donated the money from that drug deal (ha) to a diabetes research organization, y'all.
I am so sick of seeing people attacked like this. I bet most people would be thrilled to have Paula as a grandma. I heard her on the Today show - I'm a cook, not your doctor. Amen, sister.
But it was kinda funny when she got hit in the face with that ham. I'm not made of wood, y'all. Still, the people that are so "outraged" by her must not have much to occupy their time.
I'm sorry, everything in moderation, I eat butter, fat and sugar myself, yadda yadda -
But when you broadcast nearly exclusively recipes you know are unhealthy, get diabeetus from having eaten it all, don't tell us for three years, then sign up for a lucrative contract promoting the anti-diabetes medicine and products of Novo Nordisk, you deserve what you get from the rest of us.
This isn't a north/south thing. I've made and eaten my share of chocolate mousse, and I cooked professionally for nearly four years, all of it rich, high end food that should only be eaten once a month by healthy people. This is NOT what Paula Deen's message was or apparently still is, despite contracting what is clearly an IF/THEN disease that will likely kill her before her time.
I think that is utter bullshit. Do you even watch her show? She isn't promoting anything of the kind. She's not a mental case. Nobody advocates eating deep fried macaroni and cheese as a diet staple, including her. It's fun. It's whimsical.
And while I admit that when I first heard this story, I thought..oh, Paula. But then the more I heard, the more I thought, you know what? It's a private issue and she was under no obligation to tell anyone she has a disease. And here's the other thing. Yes, she signed a contract with a drug company. Her face is planted all over everything. So is Rachel Ray's. So is Guy Fieri's. So is Emeril's. She is donating money for diabetes research. That's a good thing. She won't change her show? That's her perogative. Nobody knows what she's doing in the privacy of her home. And it remains to be seen what she says about it on her show.
Jesus, it's amazing how people see and hear only what they want to believe. It's classist. Period.
FWIW, it's not an attack on you in particular. Ginny mentioned above some forum where people are het up about this. Even before this, I've seen and heard awful things said about this woman. What is she, Saddam Hussein? I don't get it. Nobody's forcing anybody to make her recipes - why is she the poster child for ill health? I still contend it's because she's from the south, and therefore stupid and an easy target.
I say the woman is far from stupid. You said you worked in the restaurant industry. You know how hard it is. She made it. Good for her. Haters gonna hate, as the kids say. I can just think of many other targets more deserving.
LONG C&P from Christina Pirello, one of America's preeminent authorities on natural foods is the Emmy Award-winning host of the public television series, 'Christina Cooks.'
Sums it up pretty well for me. Cornbread?
An open letter to Paula Deen...
January 19th, 2012 by Christina Pirello
I was sorry, although not surprised, to hear of your diagnosis of diabetes. Having watched your cooking show for years, I guess it was just a matter of time before your style of cooking caught up with you, so to speak.
Now, in interviews, you say that you always preached all things in moderation but in all my experience of you, I have seen nothing remotely close to moderate. Instead, I saw a homespun talent delighting in wrapping macaroni and cheese in bacon before frying it. There was no mention of moderation. I watched as you constructed a sandwich of Thanksgiving leftovers that included mayonnaise, mashed potatoes, turkey, stuffing, cranberry sauce and bacon. No mention of moderation there either.
Now that you have pulled back the curtain on your struggle with the disease that afflicts more than 8% of Americans (almost 26 million people) and is on the rise, did you come out on Today and say that you know that your illness is the result of deep-fried, buttery, sugar-laden foods? Nope. Did you say that you would change your lifestyle in order to better control this disease? Nope.
You announced that you will give up sweet tea, will walk regularly on your treadmill and represent a diabetes drug.
I dont care that it took you a long time to reveal your illness. It is, frankly, no ones business. It does look a bit fishy, however, that you chose to announce your struggle at the same time you announced becoming the paid spokesperson for Novo Nordisk, a leading diabetes drug.
You posted a lasagna recipe on the Novo Nordisk website called Diabetes in a New Light that included lean ground meat (oy) and 7count them 7 different cheeses (some low fat and some not) but seriously, for diabetes? Seven cheeses?
With all the research that tells us that Type 2 diabetes is the direct result of diet and lifestyle, did it not occur to you that a change in your own diet and lifestyle could help you with your disease?
Its time to do more than switch from fried chicken to baked. Only a dramatic shift in the way you eat will allow you to control this disease for the rest of your life. Only a dramatic shift in the food you consume will change your health in a way that makes drugs not necessary.
Now I am sure the idea of giving up meat, cheese, butter and other saturated fats makes youre a bit nervous, especially considering that your empire is built on such foods. But as a national public television chef who has spent my career helping people regain their health by changing their food, I can assure you that most of your beloved Southern recipes can be converted to delicious, satisfying, plant-based versions that will give you a newfound love of food. Plant-based eating will allow you to be creative in new ways, with new energy for all aspects of your life.
And the side effects? Unlike diabetes drugs, the side effects of plant-based eating include more energy, weight loss, a reduced risk of heart disease, cancer and stroke. You will look and feel better than you have in your life. Diabetes drugs can only promise to turn your life into a risky business, potentially damaging your liver, kidneys...even brain function.
Makes kale seem a whole lot more appealing, doesnt it?
Type 2 diabetes is the result of the foodor foodlike substances we choose to eat. ..and obesity (and a wee influence of genetics). There was a recent Gallop Poll that lauded the fact that America is less obeseYippee, right? Well, before you get out the party hats, look at the actual statistics and youll see there is a lot more work to do. The obesity rate went from 63.1% (overweight or obese) to 62.9%. and were celebrating. A .2% drop in obesity has us slap happy. I guess its better than going up .2%, butIm just sayin.
Why not use your considerable influence to help them make choices that will serve them and not rob them of health? Instead of becoming the paid spokesperson for Novo Nordisk, a drug that wont help us become healthier or get to the root cause of our ills, but just masks the real problem, why not help Americans become better educated so they can reclaim their health and break the stranglehold that pharmaceuticals have on our lives?
I stand by what I said. Who nominated her poster child for unhealthy eating in America? Barefoot Contessa cooks same shit, calls it French, she's a genius. Tony Bourdain is a yankee f*ckstick. Paula donated money to diabetes research. Blah blah, I'm boring myself already.
Besides - no way I'm listening to a pasty vegetarian. She clearly never watched the show, either. Paula uses the same themes all those other Food Network idiots use. Fatty crap at Christmas, salads after new years. Ugh, wasn't I just shutting up already? This is too stupid for words. Mmm...fried chicken.
Life is so simple: Paula's style of cooking is the only cause of diabetes in any country, ever.
The only diabetes she caused is her own. The rest of us are on our own. If this drug works for her, and people are going to eat whatever the hell they want regardless of dr's orders, why shouldn't she tell people about it and maybe it can help someone else?
I would be pleased to personally give a million dollars to anyone that contracted diabetes exclusively from eating the recipes on Paula's cooking show. Give your head a shake, people. The problem is bigger than her show.
Thanks, Arwen. I'd invite you over for cornbread anytime. I use fat free buttermilk and everything!
Don't get me wrong, I'd invite Squid, too. I'd fry up some blue gills, make some cheese grits and hushpuppies, and get a little moonshine for sippin. He might rather have my pan seared cod with lemon thyme butter, though. I'm flexible.
This is pretty much the same argument I had already seen - but it was also brought up that she's being picked on because she's a fat woman and folks were like "Look at that Man vs. Food guy! No one bats an eye!" But really, I think if he came out and said he had diabetes for the last three years and still ate milkshakes until he puked, people would be mad/grossed out/appalled.
That's nice she donated the money though. And like I said, her son does have a show out that is basically her show without the lard and over the top butter, and I'll take a look at it when I get the chance.
But at the end of the day, there's a certian amount of responsibility that comes along with holding yourself out as basically, a teacher. I don't think she's completely handled that responsibility well, IMO.
How is she any more of a teacher than any other cook on food network? I think this is where I fall down with the whole thing. The weight of it all is on Paula's shoulders? I just don't buy that. I think it's the perception of her more than any reality. She cackles about putting a stick of butter in something. That's her schtick. Guy Fieri never met a slab of bacon he didn't french kiss. I'm wasting my breath, I know, but I really do feel that she is being targeted because of her cornpone act. Maybe she's reaping what she's sown, but damn. The woman isn't responsible for diabeetus. People make their own crappy decisions.
Ok, I give. I'm going to go partake of some deep fried co-cola and weep into my PBR later.
I read nothing in that open letter, nor said anything that even remotely suggested the woman or her chosen diet is the sole culprit in diabetes.
In fact I admitted that I ate butter, sugar, fat yadda yadda. Hell, I might get diabetes some day. Others in my family have.
I get it, some of you like Paula Deen personally.
No argument I've read above sounds anything like more than what her best friend might say in a loyal attempt to cloud the fact that cooking what she cooks than signing up to be a rep for Novo Nordisk for financial gain is hypocrisy of the first order.
Your histrionic frustrated alliteration aside Cornbread, you've not made a strong argument in my book.
You know what's condescending? When you say you're wasting your breath everytime you make an argument here. Like none of us are considering what you have to say. It's douchey. Quit it. You're making some good points.
Indefensible? Is it? Ok, let's get some kittens and shut down the food network! Might as well shut down the internet, too. That f*cking Epicurious is forever showing me recipes with heavy cream. It's probably the corporate monsters out to get us, you know.
I'm appalled that there are people sitting back saying this woman is some kind of monster for coming forward with diabetes "only after" she got a deal with a drug company. Ever stop to think she might think, in her hick way, she might be helping somebody? Oh right, she endorses Smithfield so she's responsible for pigs being treated inhumanely in slaughterhouses that have been operating for 100 years. That logic is what escapes me.
I don't get why people are mad that she is doing these commercials.
Too many people eat too much crap. The pills are a medical necessity. No one is mad at Wilfred Brimley for doing similar commercials. She doesn't force anyone to eat anything. She is a teacher but she is teaching people how to cook her style of cooking. She is not a dietician. She is a specialized chef. If you don't want to eat her style of food, then change the channel. There is a whole network devoted to all sorts of different styles of cooking. People have free will and remote controls.
I usually do not understand the use of the word hypocrite on this bored.
I'm not trying to start (continue?) an argument but:
Hypocrisy is the state of pretending to have virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that one does not actually have. Hypocrisy involves the deception of others and is thus a kind of lie.
She is a spokesman for diabetes medication.
He style of cooking can cause diabetes, if consumed in excess.
She is hypocritical because
(a)...she said it doesn't?
(b)...she has diabetes herself?
(c)...all of the above
(d)...none of the above
I think they are saying that she is selling a lifestyle of carefree eating, "hiding" the fact she has diabetes, and then hawking a drug to control the condition instead of nailing herself to a cross and swearing to eat nothing but broccoli for the rest of her life. Instead, she's going to continue her evil show and fall asleep each night cackling on a giant pile of ill gotten gains.
Arwen, How do you make the statement that people are eating crap, therefor the the medication is necessary? Think about that for a second. Take the crap away, and the pills disappear as well.
Type II diabetes is brought on mostly by lifestyle. And it can usually be treated by simple changes in diet and exercise. Treating this as a medical condition is another in a long line of things that are making Americans look stupid. And it's also one of the many reasons the over-all price in healthcare is going up every year.
Deen is just encouraging people to make the choice of idiots.
That's what's frustrating to me. We had a discussion here about fast food and how it was ok in moderation and how you can't legislate what people eat, it't about personal choice. Now, you are putting all this responsibility on one woman. It makes no sense.
She is not the only source of crap. People are acting as tho, if they shut down her show, everything would be fine. It wouldn't. They are acting like, if she wasn't selling diabetes medication, people wouldn't buy it. If she didn't have a show, no one would need to take it.
There are bigger problems out there than Paula Dean's show. I am pretty sure the percentage of people that have diabetes because of her is so small as to be unmeasurable in the context of everything else that is a cause.
It's easy to point to her and yell "Burn her!" but I think anyone who does that is missing the bigger picture. Shut down her show. What will the overall effect be on the rates of obesity in the country? People are wasting their energy on her.
What bothers me isn't her touting recipes for pecan pie with a bacon crust or whatever, it is her reply on the Today Show when asked what causes Type II diabeetus: "Age, heredity and lifestyle". It's exactly the kind of disingenuous response that you would expect from a corporate shill representing a drug company. While not completely inaccurate, it puts too much emphasis on the factors that are out of your control. If you are led to believe that age and heredity are important factors then you're more likely to accept that you need medication to treat it. You would rather inject yourself with something that puts you at risk for liver damage than give up your pimento cheese-filled doughnuts? Fine. Own it.
I think it's OK to levy criticism against a person who's sending a bad message, without blaming them for an entire epidemic. No one is suggesting Deen is the cause, or even that her followers make up a large percentage of people with type II diabetes. Just that selling fatty foods AND the treatment for diabetes is incompatible.
That was supposed to say "Thanks for clarifying in a nice way, Mev" and "That's where we differ PG. I wouldn't be asking her what the she thought the cause of diabetes was. I would be asking my dr. I would just expect her to bake her pies and read her diabetes medication script phonetically. It's like expecting an actor to have a well thought out political opinion and then raking him over the coals when he doesn't."
I get what you're all saying but the medication is being sold regardless of who the spokesperson is and she actually has diabetes and can probably tell people it actually works for her.
I guess I am saying I would actually prefer her to be doing the commercial than some paid actor who has never had any health problems...not that she wouldn't lie for money and endorse something that she may not have even tried...and not that there are already a lot of commercials with fake drs telling me the side effects of some drug I don't even know the purpose of...
The news people were stupid to ask her what causes diabetes in the first place. Like they were stupid to ask Sarah Palin what magazines she reads. We all know she doesn't read
Bye Cornbread! Don't let the door hit you on the ass on the way out!
And Arwen - let me just repeat Mevin's correct assertion that no one anywhere in this thread is blaming this one woman for this disease.
She is receiving financial gain for the sale of pills made necessary in part by the core product her media empire promotes.
You don't need to post the definition of hypocrisy for me, either. You could substitute the above for what you blocked and copied above.
Let's pretend she had been diagnosed with emphysema three years ago, and she'd had a show about the joys of smoking for the past five years. NOW she's got a deal with GlaxoSmithCline to promote the use of Advair inhalers to alleviate the symptoms of emphysema, WHILE SHE CONTINUES TO SMOKE, and also makes sure to remind us that emphysema can be caused by the smog in our cities and that a weakness for it can be inherited.
Tell me how substituting diabetes for emphysema is different, cause I can't see it at all.
Totally legit, Aurora. I've long said that about the whole pro sports/steroids problem. That if kids are THAT influenced by moronic sports stars, they've got bigger problems.
But the problem with Deen's thing (at least for me) is that the cost of dealing with diabetes is way disproportional to the reality of the disease. It really bothers me that healthcare in the U.S. is so expensive, for all the wrong reasons. Everyone wants to blame the insurance industry, but part of the problem is us, with our horrible lifestyle choices.
So yeah, we should ignore Deen and the junk food industry, and eat more salad and go outside to play. But we're not. Instead we're taking pills. And that's why Deen makes me mental!
I wasn't posting the definition of hypocracy for you, Squid. It really was for me.
I admit that often I am multi-tasking when reading threads and when something like this comes up, I have a genuine interest in what is being said and want to participate. I do my best not to be argumentative but, instead, I post questions to better clarify things in my head. I hope it comes off that way. I can be too black and white sometimes but I really love to hear opinions that contradict mine.
I got in shit for appearing to "disagree" with the seriousness of things in some of Z's crazy threads but it was not my intention to disagree. I really just wanted to better understand people's points of view. That's the same thing I am doing here.
I am sure there are some IMs and emails going back and forth saying "Is Arwen dense or something?" but I'm not afraid to ask stupid questions here
According to an msnbc article, genetics is the MAIN reason people get Type II diabetes.
"Three factors push a person toward diabetes, said Dr. Robin Goland, an endocrinologist and co-director of the Naomi Berrie Diabetes Center at New York Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center.
The most important factor is genetics whether youve inherited a susceptibility to the condition.
Now Im not recommending this, but if you dont have those genes working against you, you could gain weight and not exercise and your blood sugar would stay normal, Goland said.
I'm in the Cornbread and Arwen camp on this one.(even though I totally disagree that people are being harsh concerning her because she's southern)
So it would seem that first and foremost, Paula had a genetic predisposition to getting typeII diabetes, unlike the open letter to paula written by another cook who claims it's just a teeny bit about genetics. (When did they find the time to become a doctor as well as a chef?)
And, yes, if she hadn't gotten fat, she may not have the disease.
Being fat isn't healthy. We all know this.
Should only skinny people be allowed to push drugs for diabetes? Only people who don't actually have the disease? Or should the drugs be outlawed altogether because they treat a preventable disease brought on by lifestyle choices?
And that supports what I've seen in the people I've personally know, who have, or had the disease. My overweight father had it and didn't take care of himself. If he didn't take insulin, and blood thinners for his cholesterol problems, he never would have lived into his 70's. But his last year of life, he had to have his lower left leg amputated and he completely lost the use of his kidneys. Not fun.
On the flip side, I have a friend about my age, who was diagnosed with type II couple of years ago. He switched from a diet of mostly meat and potatoes, to one of mostly fruits and veggies. He lost 30 lbs, takes zero insulin and is healthier than ever.
So again, Deen can either sell butter, or sell health, but not both. What she's doing now just makes her a shill for big pharma.
Sure. But who you gonna trust more for medical advice, them, or Deen?
I'll take Deen for showing me how to stuff a Turkey, but WebMD for a quick reference about acid reflux.
But since the NYT also referenced the Mayo Clinic as a better resource for unbiased medical information, they (the Mayo Clinic) also said that weight and inactivity were the top two determining factors for developing type II diabetes.
Doc Zh, you crack me up. I was just about to do what Bider did but then I got what you meant. Of course you can compare apples and oranges - you can compare anything. And it is easier to compare things (if by comparing you are listing the differences) when they are very different. You really look at the world in a different way. I like!
For dinner Saturday night, I made chicken wellington. Sauteed chicken breast in seasonings; spread on top a mixture of cream cheese and dijon mustard; top with a sauteed mixture of mushrooms, onions, and garlic; and finally wrap in puff pastry and bake. I made a mushroom sauce to drizzle over. HOLY SMOKES PEOPLE! Delicious!