One last Paula Deen comment…

On the negativity surrounding Paula Deen’s announcement and how the DOC has reacted, I  must say that I look everyday to the DOC for inspiration, motivation and validation; I have to note that much of the negativity directed toward Paula Deen is the result of her own clear inability to grasp what diabetes means to one’s lifestyle choices post-diagnosis. This is not a judgement but a reaction to a person who clearly puts marketing and self promotion before the critical changes that she needs to make in her life to succeed and maintain health with diabetes. This is a celebrity with a wide reach who can inspire, teach and motivate the millions of T2s in our society – and T2s are the vast majority of PWDs. We in the DOC know how important a healthy diet, exercise and medication are to maintaining a healthy life free of complications. Paula Deen has chosen to be dismissive of these extremely important choices that are so difficult to make for all of us. She missed an opportunity to be the kind of role model T2s, in particular, really need. Again, this is an observation and an opinion, not a judgement. I find it a real tragedy for all people with diabetes that someone of her obvious intelligence and stature has handled this in the way that she has. That said, I also understand deeply the difficulty of incorporating diabetes into one’s life. It is extremely hard and perhaps Paula Deen needs us more than she knows. If she ever turns to the DOC for support I know we would all be there for her.

Paula Dean and snarky remarks…

I made a snarky tweet today about Paula Dean revealing her diabetes. I don’t want to repeat it because it offended some people and for that I am sorry. I would like to add, however, that while perhaps a little mean-spirited (sorry for that too!) I do not think it is a big shock that someone with the  diet she promotes, obesity and who knows what other risk factors would wind up with Type 2 diabetes. The fact that she has hidden it for a few years while still promoting a diet rich in lard and sugar is, to me, inexcusable. I have no doubt that her diagnosing physician was crystal clear about the causes Type 2 diabetes. What an opportunity for Ms. Dean to use her fame to promote healthy lifestyle choices and a change in that traditional Southern diet. Instead she remained silent and still promoted her heart attack delights. In addition, I find it a little distasteful that rather than become a spokesperson for the people in this country challenged by cultural dietary habits, Ms. Dean chose instead to become a spokesperson for a pharmaceutical company.  Paula Dean is, in my opinion, a woman who has done much to contribute to this unhealthy diet we have in this country. All with a kind of thumbed nose irreverence to a healthier diet and lifestyle. As a person with Type 1 diabetes for 28.5 years, I am not amused. I also have friends who suffer from Type 2 diabetes and are significantly challenged to maintain a healthy diet. Now perhaps Ms. Dean too knows her culinary extravaganzas have some real consequences. For this, I want her to stand with other People With Diabetes and promote that which people in the DOC know is the only way to prevent and stem the rise of Type 2 diabetes; a healthy diet, exercise and proper medication. It would also help to have high-profile people working with us to get diabetes in the media and seize the opportunity to advocate for simple changes in diet, exercise and medication in the culture at large.