Gwinnette Daily Post
Healthy Helping:  Dr. Isaacs and B. Smith Team Up
For Diabetes Awareness Campaign
February 2, 2008
Restaurateur makes woman's meals more diabetes-friendly
By Melissa Wilson

Gwinnette Daily Post
February 2, 2008

Like many a Southern woman, Deborah Brown loves to cook.

She finds joy in standing over a hot stove, stirring a pot of
homemade spaghetti sauce or meticulously constructing a layered
dessert in the kitchen of her Snellville home.

The 49-year-old has an extensive recipe collection of rich desserts,
Southern favorites and international dishes. But Brown admits the
recipes she's prepared for years aren't for someone with type 2
diabetes, like herself.

So she went in search of someone who could help her get healthy
without having to sacrifice her favorite dishes.

An Internet search a few months ago led Brown to, where she discovered a program endorsed by
former fashion model and restaurateur B. Smith.

The culinary expert was looking for someone like Brown - someone
with diabetes looking to make a change in their diet.

"I signed up to become a participant, and they actually picked me,"
Brown explained.

Under this relatively new program, Brown is the third chosen by Smith
to have her favorite meal - lasagna, cooked vegetables and tiramisu
- transformed into a more healthy version.

Smith traveled to Atlanta in late January, where she met up with
Brown at The Viking Store, 1745 Peachtree Road, to cook up the
Italian dish.

"Deborah is great," Smith said. "She sent me her recipes and she's a
foodie, I could tell."

Smith said it's important to make small steps when it comes to
making a nutritional change.

For example, when making lasagna, she suggests replacing cow's
milk cheese with a soy substitute, using ground turkey instead of
beef and replacing simple carbohydrate white pasta with a whole
wheat version. Smith's recipes can be found online at

"I think it's a good message we have," Smith said. "It's the small
steps that make a difference. You can create recipes that are
favorable. People with diabetes don't have to feel alienated. There
are many alternatives out there when it comes to food. I think this is
a great program for me to be an ambassador for. I want to help
people eat healthy foods."

Brown said one bite of the new lasagna and she knew she would soon
be making the dish in her own kitchen.

"It tasted great - my husband even liked it," Brown said. "And I
especially like that it took 10 minutes to make and 40 minutes in the

Board-certified Atlanta endocrinologist and diabetes expert Dr. Scott
Isaacs backs up Smith's nutrition-aimed diabetes mission.

"Nutrition is so important," Isaacs said. "Ninety percent of diabetes is
controllable by diet and weight loss. And my experience is that
nutrition is overlooked sometimes."

Medical Director of Intelligent Health Center and an instructor of
medicine at Emory University, Isaacs said diabetes patients often
think there's nothing wrong with their diet.

"So many say, 'I eat normal,' but eating normal is not good," Isaacs
said. "You actually have to eat abnormally to eat healthy."

Brown said the meal makeover was just what she needed to put her
on the track to healthier eating.

"Meeting B. has taught me so much," Brown said. "She's showed me
how to change my recipes without having to sacrifice taste, and she'd
really showed me things I didn't know before."