Paula Deen to Address Diabetes Rumors

Paula Deen is a household name for many, and she is appearing on NBC’s “Today” show tomorrow “to discuss reports that she has type 2 diabetes.” Rumors have persisted about Deen’s diabetes since early April and have only grown since.

According to NBC, Deen will appear with Al Roker on Tuesday’s “Today” show to talk about the rumors surrounding her having diabetes. Roker himself is am ambassador for the Inspired by Diabetes campaign, which raises awareness of people living with type 2 diabetes. The Al Roker Entertainment company produced a half-hour special called “Diabetes: The Quiet Killer,” which focused on the silent epidemic.

Deen is the author of 14 cookbooks, which have sold over 8 million copies, as well as the host of “Paula’s Best Dishes” and “Paula’s Home Cooking” on the Food Network. She has won two Emmy awards for her hosting skills and has won over fans with her bubbly personality and traditional Southern cooking.

Critics, however, have noted that Deen’s recipes are not always health-centered. For example, in one recipe cited by the Physicians’ Committee for Responsible Medicine, Deen’s hot wings contained 910 calories and 85 grams of fat. Chef Anthony Bourdain famously said that Deen was “the worst, most dangerous person to America [and should] think twice before telling an already obese nation that it’s OK to eat food that is killing us.”

Son Bobby Deen has a new show on the Cooking Channel, “Not My Mama’s Meals,” which offers healthier variations of his mother’s Southern cooking. His website reads, “Each week, we’ll follow Bobby as he tries to recreate one of his Mama’s famous meals with healthy substitutes that cut down on calories and fat, but still deliver on taste.”

According to the American Diabetes Association, type 2 diabetes is the most common form of the disease. As of Jan. 26, 2011, there are 25.8 million children and adults in the United States with some form of diabetes.

Watch Paula Deen fry a cheesecake: