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Saturday, January 21, 2012

Paula Deen and the Trapped Nutritionists

Television chef and personality Paula Deen revealed recently that she has type 2 diabetes. Taking advantage of the situation to demonstrate first rate condescension and everyone who has ever even seen a white lab coat derided the way she cooks on television citing it as the reason for the disease. All of that sugar and butter just is not good for a person some health pundits pontificated so Ms Deen should have seen the writing on the wall. Her freewheeling culinary message that if a little is good then a lot is better is going to lead to many people with getting diabetes as “she is a role model for a lot of people”.

 Jumping at Ms. Deen with such vitriol demonstrates that the health elitists are trapped in their own shortsighted ideology. Trapped is the appropriate description because they are unwilling to listen to any differing ideas on the topic. They assume this equation poor diet + Paula Deen = diabetes. What is missing in their analysis are the many other possible contributing factors to the onset of diabetes such as age and family history.

Age and family history are largely ignored because it is difficult if not unseemly to look down on someone due to age or genetically predisposed health issues. The way someone eats, their weight and their assumed lack of physical activity however is fair game to the nutrition know it alls. These after all are the golden keys to health and longevity.

The fact of the matter is that we are not meant to live forever and no amount of exercise and diet will thwart the natural processes of aging which usually includes the development of certain illnesses. This is true statistically because apart from accidental deaths the main cause of death is old age and the diseases associated with aging.

I don’t mean to say that we shouldn’t make every effort to be healthy including a good diet and regular physical activity. What I want to point out is that we shouldn’t be surprised to hear that a person in their mid sixties gets a condition such as diabetes.

Ultimately it is wrong for health elitists to tell anyone how to live their lives. To offer advice is one thing but arrogant condescension is beyond the pail. Last I checked we had certain inalienable rights including life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Within the bounds of these rights lies the right to eat what I like and even refuse to exercise.

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