Paula Deen‘s response to critics like Anthony Bourdain has thus far included zingers like “get a life.” But today, she announced that she’ll be donating a portion of her earnings from her diabetes drug spokesperson deal with Novo Nordisk to the American Diabetic Association (ADA), in what seems like a bid for fans’ approval. But all things considered, I still think she’s doing more harm than good with her messages about diabetes.
Paula made the announcement on ABC’s food show “The Chew” yesterday, where she appeared with her sons, Bobby and Jamie, who have also signed on as reps for Novo Nordisk’s “Diabetes in a New Light” campaign. When the show’s hosts asked her about her diet, she harped on moderation, like she did on the Today show earlier this week, emphasizing that the way she cooks on the show is “only 30 days of my life,” and that it’s meant for “entertainment.”
Then, in a teary moment, she added:
When my life is over, and you hear my name…I hope you associate the word “hope” with it.
When the hosts brought up her much-criticized deal with Novo-Nordisk, she responded:
Naturally, I am being compensated, my children are being compensated, because we like everybody else, have to work.
But, she added, she and her sons are “in a position” to “set aside a certain percentage (of the Novo Nordisk money) and we’re donating that back to the ADA.” (Lucky them!)
Afterward, the hosts brought out a giant birthday cake to celebrate her birthday—which is today. (If her eating a giant piece of birthday cake confuses y’all, don’t worry: She made it clear on Today that it’s okay to eat a slice of birthday cake if you have diabetes; just not the whole thing.)
Paula Deen may be entertaining, but regardless of how much money she donates to the ADA, I still think she’s sending confusing messages to the public about what causes diabetes, and how it can (and should) be prevented through lifestyle factors like weight control, diet, and activity.
Photo: The Chew