Padma Lakshmi Reveals Her Diet Plan to Make Up for Eating 7,000 Calories a Day on Top Chef

Now that Season 15 has wrapped, the judge is making a few tweaks to her eating habits. 

For Padma Lakshmi, consuming delicious — and not always low-calorie — meals is all in a day's work. While filming Top Chef, the judge says she consumes some 7,000 to 8,000 calories a day! But, when the winning Cheftestant is selected and the show goes on hiatus, Padma makes a few tweaks to her daily eating routine. 

Speaking to Access, Padma shared that she typically puts on some 15 pounds during filming. And she put on 17 pounds during Season 4 while in Chicago, home of deep-dish pizza. As it turns out, it takes a bit of effort — and saying no to pizza — to shed that weight. 

"To get the weight off it’s really hard, there are no tricks, it’s just eating healthy," Padma said. "I don’t drink alcohol. I don’t eat fried food. I don’t eat red meat. I don’t eat any dairy, except low-fat cottage cheese and non-fat yogurt. I don’t eat sweets. Oh, and I don’t eat flour." 

But, there are plenty of things the foodie does keep in her diet. Among her top picks for eating clean: "I eat a lot of vegetables and fruit," she said. "I eat fish and chicken and shellfish. I also eat a lot of lentils and beans. When I’m not on the show, I’m pretty plant-based. I was raised as a vegetarian in India and in America. We had a vegetarian home. I didn’t really start eating meat until I was a teenager, so I’m used to eating like that. It’s hard for your body to process meat.”

The mostly plant-based cookbook author also has a fashion tip to prevent looking like a piece of meat. "I have clothes from a size four to a size fourteen, from when I was pregnant, and go up a size,” she said. “No one is looking at your tag. It’s better that it fits you well — everyone tries to squeeze in one size of jeans, it just makes you look like a sausage.” 

Watch Padma explain her eating habits, below: 

 

Any health-related information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified health provider for any questions you may have regarding a medical condition, or before embarking on any diet, exercise, or wellness program.

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