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Omnivore - Paula Deen transforms blood sugar into cash

Paula Deen shocks the food world



On Tuesday, Paula Deen told the Today Show, as anticipated, that she received a diagnosis of Type 2 diabetes three years ago. There was, along with the outpouring of sympathy, the predictable response of "Duh!" from countless others.

Just watching Deen prepare her fatty, sugary cooking can make you clutch your heart and feel like your thighs are rubbing together as you walk to the kitchen to fetch a stick of butter for a midnight snack. But I have to agree with this in the New York Times:

Virginia Willis, a food writer in Atlanta, said that criticisms directed at Ms. Deen often reflect sexism and stereotyping about the South, in addition to food snobbery. “No one vilifies Michelin chefs for putting sticks of butter in their food,” she said. “But when a Southern woman does it, that’s tacky.” Contrary to popular belief, however, she said Ms. Deen’s fat-laden cooking does not represent the apotheosis of Southern cuisine.

“Paula’s food often reflects modern cooking and convenience foods more than Southern tradition,” she said. “She feels like she cooks for ‘real people,’ and for better or worse, that is how many people in this country choose to eat.”

Nonetheless, is it possible not to feel cynical about Paula's explanation for waiting three years to disclose the news: "I wanted to wait until I had something to bring to the table.”

What she brings to the table is yet another pile of cash for herself — an addition to her empire of paid endorsements. Just after slapping her mug on Springer Mountain Farms chickens, she's now peddling a diabetes drug that costs $500 per month. Watch her video on the drug maker's site, if you'd like a brain-tingling sugarless rush.

Nice going, Paula. Great message: Eat shit, get diabetes, and take an expensive pill to make it all better. Yeah, yeah, go ahead and cut back your portions and take a walk too.

Ugh.