Headline on Yahoo! News
Attribution: ABC New/Good Morning America
“Paula Deen Caught Eating a Cheeseburger”
It seems that Ms. Deen, television chef, caused a furor in the last week or so when she “admitted” that she has type 2 diabetes and is now a paid spokesperson for a medicine to treat the condition.
I can see how some might think she brought it on herself after seeing some of her recipes. One they showed several times was a burger with all the fixin’s on a donut. Okay, that was over the top, but who in their right mind would eat something like that? Is it possible she was just pokin’ a little fun at ya’ll?
I have a news flash for the writer of the cheeseburger story. Unless that cheeseburger had barbecue sauce or some other condiment with sugar, the cheeseburger is okay for a diabetic to eat. It’s not the calories that are so important—it’s the carbs we have to watch. Of course, overweight is a factor when dealing with the condition, but even if you are overweight you can control the blood sugar levels by avoiding the carbs.
Let’s break it down. A cheeseburger usually consists of a hamburger patty, cheese, lettuce, tomato, mayo, onion, pickle, and a bun. Some people may choose to include catsup or mustard. Meat and cheese (proteins) have little or no carbs; lettuce, tomato, pickle, and onion less than 5 unless you use a whole tomato on one burger; mayo, no carbs. Now we come to the bun. Depending on the size and ingredients, a bun can be as little as 20 carbs for a “lite” bun to as much as 55 for a huge burger at a fast food emporium. Even if it were on a big bun, 60 grams of carbs is low for a meal. The calorie count may be high, but the carb count is low. Some people need to get their facts straight before taking others to task for something which, apparently, they know nothing about.
(So often I have heard people say when talking about over-weight low-income people, “They sure don’t look like they’ve missed many meals.” They are overweight because beans, pasta, potatoes, bologna, biscuits, gravy, and cornbread are a heck of lot cheaper that meat, vegetables [cauliflower was $4.00 a head last week locally, as an example], and fruit.)
Then were is nurture vs. nature. Some of us have a predisposition for diabetes. It not exactly described as hereditary but it does run in families. In my family, it goes back to my great grandmother. But, of course, some of it does go to nurturing. My mother who over-weight has a great cure for depression. Not drugs, but “eat something, you’ll feel better.” Needless to say, it became my cure, too. I must have been really depressed. There is also the way my family cooked. My grandmother was from Alabama. Everything vegetable she cooked was seasoned with bacon drippings or fatback. Chicken was fried, and the ice cream was home-made in the hand-cranked machine.
Ms. Deen has been criticized for her southern cooking, with some implying that it was her diet that was directly responsible for her condition. They are also blaming her for putting others in harm’s way by touting her recipes to the general public.
There are several contributors to developing diabetes, but I certainly don’t blame my family for my predisposition to it or for the way my family cooked, or my mother’s choice for handling depression. At some point, I made the decision to continue overeating. It was ME, not my family, not some cook on television. I should have made better decisions and then I perhaps I wouldn’t be shunning all the White Stuff that I love to eat. I wouldn’t be worried about losing body parts, kidney function, and sight.
And Paula Deen shouldn’t be blamed for obesity and diabetes. And if she wants to have a burger, it’s not really such a bad choice. (But we all know that we should watch those calories, too, dammit!)