Marie Claire Magazine Q&A - April 2001

Q: What is your greatest food indulgence?
A: Haagen-Dazs Java Chip ice cream. But I canít have too much; the caffeine gets to me.

Q: What could you never give up?
A: Butter. I was going to say baked potatoes, but thatís just because I put on so much butter.

Q: What could you easily give up?
A: Meat. Iíd only crave Korean barbecue. But I donít need it.

Do you exercise?
A: My 2-year-old son doesnít really let me. But when Iím good, I do yoga, walk, and ride the Lifecycle about three times a week.

Q: Do you diet?
A: Diets donít work. If Iíve been eating a lot of fatty foods, Iíll cut those out for a while, but Iíd never do anything like ďthe pineapple diet.Ē When I was trying to lose weight from my first baby, I did The Zone and the weight came off. I was starving, but it worked. Afterward, I gained a few pounds and settled back to my plateau weight. I never say what I weigh, because then other people compare themselves and think, well, if sheís 124 then itís OK if Iím 124. Donít own a scale; they f**k you up.

Q: Have you ever had an eating disorder?
A: Probably not. I like food too much. With my food indulgences, Iíd say I have the antithesis of an eating disorder. I donít want to be an actress who starves herself. Iím sure Iíve lost parts because I eat whatever I want. A while ago, People magazine asked something like, ďHow do you feel about being in the more zaftig category of actresses, the Kate Winslets?Ē These women were all normally proportionate yet being held to some freaky standard. I answered, ďIíd rather not comment on that, because I donít consider myself to be overweight. Do you want to give me an eating disorder?Ē

Q: Who has had the greatest influence on your body image?
A: My mom. Sheís got a great body Ė and image. Itís amazing how young girls want to diet because their moms are neurotic about dieting.

Q: When did you last feel good about your body?
A: This morning. Pregnancy is weird, because thereís more of you, but itís just so cool. I can get over the cellulite on my ass because I know itíll probably go away once my child is born.

Q: Who, living or dead, would you describe as having the ideal womanís body?
A: Marion Jones. Athletes have ideal bodies, because they work hard Ė and train Ė to get them. And also Cate Blanchett. She looks fabulous in clothes. You donít go, ďOh, God, sheís so thin.Ē Madonnaís got a great body, too, but doesnít she work her ass off to keep it that way? Big celebrities have the resources to eat healthy. And they have the time to work out three hours a day, because staying fit is part of their job. But the average woman doesnít. I donít. Anybody who has kids knows you can either go to the gym for two hours or do homework with your child and put him to bed. Iíd rather have a saggier ass and more time with my children.

Q: How far would you go to get a perfect body?
A: Never say never. Actually, I got breast implants at 19 and had them removed at 22. So I did it, but it ended up being wrong for me. The consensus among my guy friends is they donít like fake breasts Ė neither did I. Would I ever get surgery again? I donít know how Iíll feel when Iím 50. But as I tell people who want to get stuff done, know why youíre doing it. If youíre not seeing a therapist, hire one, and then, if you still want to, get plastic surgery.

Q: Would you lie about your size?
A: Probably not.

Q: Which part of your body do you like the best?
A: Pregnant, my Buddha belly. Not pregnant, my hands. Hands and feet tell you a lot about people.

Q: Do you dress to hide certain parts and accentuate others?
A: Certainly, I try. Everyone should.

Q: How do you feel being naked?
A: Fine. My neighbors probably feel fine about it, too Ė I donít have any curtains right now.

Q: Do you think we, as women, are more critical of our bodies than men?
A: Far more. Men Ė or even female friends Ė look at your body as a whole; you focus on your ďproblem areas.Ē

Q: Whatís the most memorable thing a man has said about your body?
A: This morning when I got out of the shower, my son, Kiran, said: ďMommyís got a nice butt,Ē and he patted it. Heís going to be an ass man.

Q: Whatís the most memorable thing a woman has said about your body?
A: I went to see a play, and this usher said I have the nicest calves sheíd ever seen.

Q: Do you know any woman whoís happy with her body?
A: Iím usually genuinely happy with my own body. I donít think itís perfect; itís just that I donít mind what I have to work with.

Q: What can we learn from you?
A: Donít obsess, relax, you look better than you think.

Q: Does a woman who feels good about her body exude sexuality and sensuality?
A: Yeah. If someone is in touch with her body, sheís going to be better sexually and sensually Ė better able to let go.

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