Maybe Paula Deen Needs Paleo?

Paula Deen, Courtesy of Wikipedia

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock, trying to keep a safe distance between yourself and the insane American government, you’ve probably heard about Paula Deen’s recent announcement that she is in fact a Type II Diabetic. This revelation has caused quite a stir, because evidently, some people are a little upset that it took three years for her to make her illness public, while continuing to teach people how to cook exactly the kinds of food that probably contributed to her own disease.

In a Fox-News article by Jo Piazza, entitled “Diabetics call Paula Deen a hypocrite for hiding disease while promoting sugar-heavy foods”, the author clues us in to the reasons why some people are so mad at Mrs. Deen.

“Angry diabetics are calling celebrity chef Paula Deen a hypocrite, both for hiding her disease while promoting fatty, sugar-heavy foods and for partnering with a drug company that provides relief for diabetics.”

Personally, I wouldn’t bet on either the fat or the sugar content of Paula’s recipes being the cause of her Diabetes, or anyone else’s for that matter… bets are on the wheat components like the breads, and pastas etc. I’m thinking that maybe Paula Deen needs Paleo!

“It is hypocritical [for Paula] to have continued to very publicly promote entirely unhealthy food choices so vital to the management of diabetes,” Donna Shaft, a marketing consultant who has been battling type 2 diabetes for 20 years, told Fox411.

“We of course don’t know the terms of her contract with the drug company, but it seems either stupid or hypocritical of them to be endorsing the eating lifestyle she advocates. For her to publicly facilitate the illusion that a T2 can consume the quantities of fats and carbs and sugars she showcases, even occasionally, is nothing short of a dangerous abuse of the trust many in her audience place in her as an influential public figure.”

I agree. Let’s face it, even though the majority of the population don’t know precisely what the average Type II Diabetic should be eating in accordance with their disease, pretty much everyone knows that recipes that require large amounts of sugar certainly do not fit the bill.

The Diabetes issue wouldn’t have even been a big deal, if Paula was just some actor, but considering that a poor diet is the cause of Type II diabetes, it is definitely very irresponsible of her to wait three years to tell her audience about her diagnosis, and make no attempt to show people how to control and possibly prevent the disease with her culinary creations. And then to immediately jump on board with a pharmaceutical company, to help peddle their brand of “Diabetes Repair in a pill”, is definitely not part of the best solution….but there is money to be made here, right!?

Some of Deen’s fans expressed outrage that the 65-year-old chef had found what they believe is a way to capitalize on a diagnosis she kept a secret for so long.

“I understand she has an empire and a huge following to protect, but working with Novo Nordisk is just adding another revenue stream, and that is tweaking people like me who are in the diabetes education community,” said Carl Moore, a longtime fan of Deen’s who has her cookbooks in his home (though he has always modified the recipes to include less sugar and less butter). Moore, a type 2 diabetic and an educator on diabetic issues, said the news didn’t come as a surprise to him and others with the disease.

Betsy Lampe, who has struggled with type 2 diabetes for more than 20 years, said Deen has already missed her first opportunity to educate victims of the disease.

“She didn’t tell us anything on the ‘Today Show‘; she got really defensive,” Lampe told Fox411. “She didn’t tell us what her blood sugars were. You know, diabetics want to entertain and cook too. If I were her I would have announced a whole new show for entertaining as a diabetic. It was just offensive to me.

“She kept talking about moderation, but moderation in what? She didn’t explain.”

Yes, I think she missed her opportunity to educate people three years ago. It’s like she was either trying to hide her secret because of shame, or maybe she was just waiting until she could set up her lucrative deal with the pharmaceutical company Novo Nordisk?

“But while Deen is a high-profile celebrity, she may not be the best spokeswoman.

“She is overweight and that makes her, in my opinion, not credible and not valid to promote diabetes drugs,” said Richard Deems, who is a type 2 diabetic.

“I work hard on my weight and it is difficult to take someone seriously who cooks with fats and sugars the way Paula does.”

I call it, too little, too late.

Again I ask, maybe Paula Deen needs Paleo? Seriously. We know that Diabetes is fundamentally a breakdown of the body’s ability to properly handle sugar. Sugar of course comes in many forms, and realistically, a diabetic should avoid anything that easily turns to sugar within the body, such as starches, breads and pastas etc. The Paleo diet doesn’t HAVE to be low-carb, but it is easily converted to a low-carb diet, by simply limiting or eliminating the fruits that are consumed. If a person, like Paula was to follow a lower-carb Paleo Template long term, it’s possible that the diabetes could be reversed. Doesn’t that sound like a better choice than popping pills everyday, just to keep the disease under control? I think so.

I’m not saying that a low-carb approach is perfect for everyone, but for people who have a chronic disease like Diabetes, or who are teetering on the edge, should definitely consider it above all else.

Eating whole, real, natural and organic foods……no grains… dairy…..and no legumes, while focusing on lean meats and lots of healthy fats, is the best and most healthy way to avoid chronic disease, or help heal the issues that you already have. Don’t rely upon drugs to heal you, when you can take your health into your own hands! Give it a try… What have you got to lose?


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Barry Cripps is a Paleo-based Nutrition and Wellness Consultant, who operates out of Bowling Green, Kentucky.

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