KANSAS CITY – Paula Deen, the queen of Southern comfort cooking, announced she has Type 2 diabetes and will launch a new campaign "Diabetes in a New Light" in partnership with diabetes drug maker Novo Nordisk.
Deen, 64, made her announcement Jan. 17 on NBC's “Today Show”. She was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes three years ago, but chose to keep the news to herself, saying she didn't know enough about the disease at first. News reports say Deen, who also is a spokeswoman for Smithfield Foods, treats her diabetes with Novo Nordisk's drug Victoza. USA Today reported she will appear in advertisements for the drug later in January.
Following her announcement, Deen said she would be more vocal about moderation, and her son, Bobby Dean, has a new show on the Cooking Channel called "Not My Mama's Meals".
Deen achieved notoriety — and in some cases criticism — for her take on Southern cooking. Ingredients for her recipes are often rich and include a pound of bacon or a stick of butter. She is the owner of The Lady and Sons restaurant in Savannah, Ga.