Alison Sweeney has helped dozens of contestants to realize their weight-loss dreams as host of The Biggest Loser. Now, the 34-year-old mom-of-two is on a mission to help fellows mamas stay happy, healthy and fit!
Recently, Celebrity Baby Scoop had a chance to chat with Alison about her new book, The Mommy Diet, her own struggles with weight-loss and life with her children – Ben, 6, and Megan, who will celebrate her 2nd birthday this Wednesday (January 12).
CBS: Please tell us about your new book, The Mommy Diet. Does it include exercise, recipes, dieting tips? How does this book give long-term solutions to people who have been struggling with their weight?
AS: “The premise of my book is to focus on an entire lifestyle. A helpful guide to living a happy, healthy & fit life all the while being the best mom you can be. I provide a lot of specific advice and suggestions for weight loss that apply to just after having a baby but can also be useful to anyone wanting to get back in shape. I also added recipes that I use, as well as fashion, beauty and relationship tips. There are lots of books out there that are focused on caring for your infant or children, but very few that focus exclusively on the mom. Both things are important!”
CBS: Are you in better shape after having children? Would you say it was easy to lose the baby weight?
AS: “I do think, even though it is kinda shocking to me, that I am in better shape than I was before having kids. After having my daughter Megan, and with all the information I’ve learned since being with The Biggest Loser, I was really prepared in a different way to really commit to getting into shape. And instead of setting a goal of getting ‘back’ to what I was ‘before’ I focused on being in the best shape that I can be ‘now.’ That completely freed me of expectations, in a way that ended up helping me exceed them.”
CBS: What is your best advice to busy moms who say they don’t have time for losing weight/proper nutrition?
AS: “That it all comes down to priorities. I completely sympathize with busy moms who feel like there just aren’t enough hours in the day… for anything. And of course it isn’t easy to find the time, but it definitely comes down to priorities. You just have to take a stand – with yourself – and decide that it’s worth it, your health and mental heath are worth the effort to find a time. Find a way. ”
CBS: You’ve struggled publicly with your weight. Do you feel happier now that you are at a low weight?
AS: “I feel the happiest and most confident that I ever have. It’s not specifically because of my weight, so much as it is I’m proud of the physical results of the work I put into it. I work out really hard and even though I may not have the perfect figure, I’m extremely proud of what I’ve accomplished, and how fit and healthy I am. Also, it’s manageable for me to maintain which is key.”
CBS: How do you balance a healthy body weight and image in image-obsessed Hollywood?
AS: “It seems at this point, Hollywood aren’t the only ones who are ‘image obsessed.’ You see the effects of it everywhere. I think being a part of The Biggest Loser, seeing the effects of obesity in America and food addictions, eating disorders, you realize how important it is to get a handle on the mental aspects of health & wellness – as well as the physical part.”
CBS: What are your best tips re. diet and exercise (e.g. what is your fav go-to snack and your fav exercise)?
AS: “My go-to snack is yogurt, or maybe apples with a bit of organic, low-sugar peanut butter. I also right now love my spin class, (indoor cycling), but I recommend to keep trying new things, keep working out until you find out what you enjoy doing… something that will keep you coming back to the gym.”
CBS: What do you plan to teach your kids about healthy diet and exercise?
AS: “I have already started to engage Ben in conversations about it – he understand the basics of ‘mommy’s job’ and what the contestants he meets are trying to do. And we talk about why he can’t have sweets all the time etc. It’s very important that my kids understand the importance of getting outside to play as opposed to playing video games all the time.”
CBS: How will you guide your daughter toward a healthy body image?
AS: “This is an important issue for both my son and my daughter! I want them both to have a healthy body image. And these early years are crucial for setting healthy habits both physically and mentally. I think the confidence I give them goes a long way, but also helping them understand the basics of nutrition can help them feel in control of their body. They don’t get sweets as a reward ever, I don’t want them to associate food in that way.”
CBS: Are you strict about your kids’ diet? Do you do all the cooking?
AS: “We mostly cook at home, yes. I think that it is great for a lot of reasons. It’s certainly healthier because you have more control over the ingredients, but also it’s a great way to gather the family together – we all help put dinner on the table! I am firm about a a lot of aspects of their diet – they eat their veggies, U serve them well balanced meals, and they don’t have dessert every night. But they do get treats from time to time, and they enjoy spaghetti and pizza once in a while, just like other kids. But they almost never have fast food.”