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Food Network Star Paula Deen: I Have Diabetes

Paula Deen John M. Heller/Getty Images

Paula Deen has announced that she has Type 2 diabetes, but the Food Network star doesn't plan on letting the disease stop her from sharing the recipes that made her famous.

Though the celebrity chef will be easing up on the butter cakes and start counting calories.

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"When I learned I had type 2 diabetes, I decided to approach managing the disease with the same positivity and "go get 'em" attitude I have everyday. In the past, I've heard so many stories of people like me that let diabetes control their lives, but I didn't want to let this slow me down. I wanted to take control and delicious time doing it," Deen said in a message to fans on her website.

"So today, I want to bring a new light to type 2 diabetes," she continued. "I, along with [sons] Jamie and Bobby, are sharing with Americans an exciting new campaign called 'Diabetes in a New Light.' It's going to be a tasty journey, and I hope that y'all will come along with me."

The Queen of Southern Cuisine turned up on NBC's Today Show on Tuesday to plug the effort, which offers up a "dash of inspiration" through cooking tips on eating a balanced diet and ideas to help people manage their diabetes and find a treatment plan with their doctor that works for them.

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Deen revealed to Al Roker she was diagnosed three years ago during a regular exam but kept it under wraps until she could sort through the impact of the diagnosis.

"I wanted to bring something to the table when I came forward and I've always been one to think I bring hope," she said.

She's since joined forces with drugmaker Novo Nordisk as a paid spokeswoman to raise awareness and plug the company's injectable insulin, Victoza.

The Georgia native demurred, however, when asked if the fatty meals she routinely serves up on Paula Deen's Home Cooking contributed to her diabetes.

MORE: Food Fight! Anthony Bourdain Disses Paula Deen, Calls Her "Dangerous to America"

"That is part of the puzzle," she said, noting that genetics, lifestyle, diet, stress and age can all play a role. "On my show I share with you all these yummy, fattening recipes, but I tell people 'in moderation.' You can have that little piece of pie."

Deen has come under fire in recent years for her high-calorie cooking. Fellow celebrity chef Anthony Bourdain even called her "the worst, most dangerous person in America" for peddling foods that are raising the obesity rate.

Now we guess he can say, Told you so. But such criticism isn't bothering Deen.

"Of course, I will continue to share my favorite Southern recipes, just like my mama, grandmother and family shared with me over the years. And now, I'll be adding a little bit of a lighter touch to some of these wonderful dishes," she said.

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