Paula Deen Has Diabetes, PCRM Offers Help
Paula Deen’s Southern Cooking Bible topped PCRM’s Worst Cookbooks of 2011 list. But when she announced she had type 2 diabetes last month, PCRM was there to offer a plan to help her fight her health problems with a low-fat, plant-based diet.
PCRM’s director of nutrition education Susan Levin, M.S., R.D., encouraged Deen to join the 21-Day Vegan Kickstart.
“Our Kickstart program, which is completely noncommercial, is based on clinical studies finding that diets free of animal products have the power to treat and sometimes even reverse type 2 diabetes,” wrote Levin in a letter to Deen. “Needless to say, many people initially balk at the idea of setting aside meat and cheese. But as a native Alabamian who grew up on Southern cooking, I can assure you that Southern classics such as mashed potatoes and macaroni and cheese translate very well into hearty, delicious vegan dishes.”
Levin’s letter received nationwide media coverage, including mentions in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, the Los Angeles Times, and Reuters.
PCRM president Neal Barnard, M.D., also wrote about Deen’s diagnosis in his blog.
“Ms. Deen is a mirror,” wrote Dr. Barnard. “And what she shows us is that it’s time to throw out the butter and cream gravy. And we need to go further, transferring animal products, greasy foods, and sugary junk from the refrigerator to the garbage can. In so doing, the need for pharmaceutical solutions will plummet, and the next generation will have a shot at a healthy future.”
Research conducted by PCRM, George Washington University, and the University of Toronto—and funded by the National Institutes of Health—has shown that a low-fat, vegan diet can improve and even reverse diabetes.
To find out more about fighting diabetes with a plant-based diet, visit PCRM.org/Diabetes.