— Celebrity cook Paula Deen’s revelation Tuesday that she was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes three years ago has people talking, including TODAY’s Professionals: Star Jones, Donny Deutsch, and Dr. Nancy Snyderman. Deen had already been the target of criticism — particularly from acerbic chef Anthony Bourdain — for the high content of fat, sugar and salt in her Southern-style recipes, and the clamor has only grown louder since she admitted she has diabetes, for which a diet high in fat is a major risk factor.
Deen’s critics are also pointing to her position as a paid spokesman for a major pharmaceutical company's diabetes management program, accusing her of exploiting her own medical condition for profit. On Wednesday Deen pledged a portion of her earnings from the sponsorship to the American Diabetes Association. But that didn’t stop Snyderman, who is TODAY’s chief medical correspondent, from joining the anti-Deen chorus today, calling her conduct “egregious.”
But Deen has her supporters as well, particularly in Savannah, Ga., her hometown and the locale of her restaurant The Lady & Sons, whose offerings include a burger served on doughnuts. Yet others feel that Deen now has a teaching opportunity to use her celebrity to proselytize leaner, healthier cooking for an America stricken with an obesity epidemic.
How do you feel about the issue? Should Paula Deen change her ways? Or is diet a personal choice that’s nobody else’s business? Vote below!