Julianne Hough is not into fad diets and she eats carbs at every meal

US Magazine features Julianne Hough on the cover with a sidebar of Kate Hudson. Both of those women are body goals for a lot of us. They’re clearly trying to appeal to women trying to get in shape right before the summer and while it may move copies it seems kind of basic. That said, I do like how Hough focuses on exercise and following a balanced lifestyle she enjoys for the pleasure of it instead of just achieving an incredible beach body. She’s very measured and realistic in both the print and video interview on US’s site. She talks about eating carbs, not going on fad diets, and maintaining her weight by eating sensibly and staying active. Here’s some of what she said in the video (which I believe is new) and the article:

Why she works out
To workout used to be [about] what I look like. Now I need it for my mental health. If I don’t work out, I don’t feel like I started my day correctly [or] am in a good place mentally. It’s all about taking time for myself. It’s so much more fun now.

Her favorite workouts
Dance cardio stuff, Body by Simon or Tracy Anderson. I go to dance classes. I mix it up all the time, that shocks your body.

She was asked her favorite body part
I actually fluctuate quite regularly. I distribute my weight very evenly. It looks like I’ve only gained five pounds but in fact I’ve gained 15. My favorite body part is probably my stomach because it never really gets rolls. It’s a blessing and curse to have weight [distributed] evenly.

On her workout secret
A lot of people focus on goals. More recently it’s become a lifestyle rather than a diet [or] a goal for something. I don’t want to fluctuate because that’s harder work. I don’t think I’ll do a pre-wedding workout diet fad thing. I want to look like me.

What she eats
[Carbs] at every single meal. I think when you deprive yourself, that’s when you crave pasta and pizza. Everybody is so afraid of carbs – they talk about them in a negative way, like, ‘Carbs make me fat or bloated’ – but just pick the right one and have a little bit.

[From US Magazine and video]

I pretty much cosign everything she said about eating and exercise and she summed up my personal fitness philosophy well. I’m also into dance aerobics and Zumba (JJ Dancer on PopSugar is one of my new favorites) and also eat carbs all the time, although I surely should cut back on the sugar and candy.

Compare this interview, which focuses on achieving great abs and staying slim, with America Ferrera’s recent interview with Triathlete which we published earlier today. America talked about being her personal best, challenging herself and pushing her limits, not about getting to a certain weight. There’s nothing wrong with having number goals and in fact Hough’s outlook on that is refreshing and not at all Goop-like. It’s just that the angle of Triathlete’s interview had much more substance.




Photos credit: WENN and Pacific Coast News

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27 Responses to “Julianne Hough is not into fad diets and she eats carbs at every meal”

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  1. Lisa says:

    I see Tracy Anderson named and I’m out.

    tbh, I think you’ll only crave carbs if you don’t replace them with fats. I think people are still afraid of fat and don’t realize that if you cut carbs, you need something else to satiate you. You can fill up on protein but if it’s all lean stuff all of the time, you’re gonna be hungry.

    • LAK says:

      Our bodies need carbs as much as fat and protein. You shouldn’t cut out food groups if you value your long term health.

      The problem is that the diet industry has taken to labelling certain food groups bad as if they are on a par with actual poisons like cynanide.

      Unless a person has a health reason for cutting out a particular food eg allergies and or intolerances, it’s not advisable to cut out entire food groups and even with those reasons, you have to find a replacement food that provides the required foodgroup.

    • detritus says:

      LAK is right.
      Your body only uses sugars to fuel the brain, and will switch to ketosis to produce metabolites the brain can use if sugar isn’t available. starches are pretty necessary.

    • Lilly says:

      I agree it’s not great to cut out whole food groups, but I think most people are avoiding refined carbs, not fruit, veg, whole grains, etc. I personally don’t eat bread or pasta, but eat all veggies, sweet potato and some fruit. As I don’t eat meat (and was mildly anaemic last time I gave blood) I’ve added lots of eggs and dark greens to my diet and I feel fantastic.

      To each their own though, and I don’t judge what anyone else chooses to put on their plate.

    • Barbcat says:

      Lisa, you are exactly right!! We need more healthy fats in our diet.

      Also, when she says she eats carbs she probably means veggies, berries, etc. I doubt she is shoving cookies, bread, and chips in her mouth.

      If you study out evolution history for over 95% of our existence we are fat/protein heavy diets with carbs like starches and fruit only seasonally during the spring/summer. Fruits were not so sweet and we did not eat processed grains at all. Yet here we are, big brains and all. Processsd grains are a new thing and we suffer when we eat them.

    • LAK says:

      Lilly / Barbcats: You are missing my point. People who cut out carbs or sugars tend to do it wholesale. Eg i was talking to someone who is very weight conscious who assured me that fruit and veggies were carbs and therefore to be avoided because carbs are fattening. No nuaced distinguishing between cookies, cakes vs fruit, vegetables. And this person is an oxbridge graduate!!!

      When the diet industry labels foodgroups as poison or bad for us, they don’t make that nuanced argument. Instead they declare that the umbrella group is bad eg Fat is bad cue people avoiding fat under any circumstances. Then fat is good, but carbs are bad cue the enduring Atkins diet style eating.

      Honestly, we all had nutritional lessons in high school and or basic human biology lessons. Yet the diet industry is able to cut through that scientific sense to label foodgroups bad when our bodies need these things.

      • Menutia says:

        Thank you, LAK! I’m so tired of hearing that carbs are bad. No, they aren’t. Donuts are “bad.” Whole grains aren’t. I’m so weirded out by my college-educated friends and family telling me they can’t eat whole grain pasta with veggies because carbs, but then they can eat all-meat meals like fatty red meat etc. no. Reverse that, please, before you get rectal cancer and clogged arteries from saturated fat.

      • KiddVicious says:

        Your body doesn’t know the difference between sugars from a cookie and sugars from fruit. It processes it the same, your pancreas produces the same amount of insulin. True, fruit has vitamins and minerals that cookies don’t, but fruit also has a lot of fructose which can cause fatty liver.

        If someone eats a lot of fruit, the sugars not burned immediately for energy are stored as fat. That’s what insulin does, it turns excess sugars (carbs) into fat, no matter where the sugars come from. It could be fruit, cookies, pasta, bread, starchy vegetables. That’s biology 101. There’s no way around that. That’s the way the body works. The fiber in whole grains or fruit will slow down how quickly the sugars hit the body, but again, if those sugars aren’t burned as energy they are stored as fat.

        Someone with a healthy metabolism can eat plenty of fruit, pasta, etc, and not worry about it. Unfortunately, many people can’t, and I’ll bet they know more about what their body can handle than anyone else does. If I eat fruit or a Snickers, I fall asleep and I’m a zombie the rest of the day. People telling me there’s a difference between the two isn’t going to make my body process it differently, nor stop me from gaining weight.

        The body does need tiny amounts of sugar, but it also has the ability to turn amino acids into the tiny amounts of sugars needed, there’s no need to eat carbs to get it.

        And also, saturated fats don’t cause rectal cancer or clogged arteries.

      • LAK says:

        Fruit and Veggies aren’t just carbs. They also carry vitamins that are necessary for human cell , brain, hormone functions.

        Further they contain fibre which is good for digestive health and lowering of colesterol. People who insist on eating their fruit and veggies in the form of smoothies lose the fibre content and ingest pure sugar. They might as well suck on sugar cubes and be done.

        And your body definitely knows the difference between cookies and fruit. One is a direct hit and the other is a complex hit that includes other nutrients thus you can’t get a sugar high from eating lots of fruit whereas you can get one from eating cookies. You simply do not get a spike from eating fruit and veggies. That is bad science peddled by the diet industry under the guise of all carbs are bad for us.

        It’s true that ultimately the body will take sugar or convert carbs into sugars from any source, but in terms of ingesting the various sources it is bad science and utter misinformation to equate cookies with fruit / veggies. And if you are experiencing similar reactions from fruit (ALL fruit?! Really?) As you do from a snickers bar, then perhaps a allergy check is in order because one is junk and the other is not. Plus there are millions of fruits and veggies in the world, so unless you have a specific allergy eg people who have a gluten allergy and have to avoid all gluten grains, it seems impossible to believe that any random fruit gives you the same reaction as a snickers bar.

        Fruit /veggies come with fibre and vitamins and other ingredients that slow down how quickly the sugar is extracted simply because of the digestive process. Fibre and vitamins are good for you, so it’s not a wasted effort. The overall ratio of sugar to other parts of fruit /veggies is small unless you eat overripe fruit and even then you still wouldn’t ingest as much sugar as you would a similar weight in cookies. The bulk of fruit eg fibre etc means you are full faster than a packet of cookies.

        Cookies are made of pure sugar and simple carbs designed to hit your blood stream almost immediately. No other benefit to them.

        The idea that fruit is as bad for you as cookies in terms of sugar is another whopper from the diet industry.

        If this were true, every vegetarian / vegan in the world would suffer from sugar related health problems. Personally, i get a sugar high from one cookie. I become hyperactive and crash soon afterwards. In a lifetime of eating vegan (since i was a toddler), i’ve never once had any health related problems because i ate too much fruit and veggies and they’ve never ever given me a sugar rush. And my weight has never been an issue and i have been known to eat piles of fruit and veggies in one sitting.

        Putting aside my personal anecdote, half, if not 3/4, of South Eastern Asians are culturally vegetarians. Yet no corresponding sugar related health problems or weight issues. Instead it’s the people who eat too much beef that show corresponding health problems……but the idea that fruit and veggies are bad for you is straight out of a diet industry marketing board and it works because people don’t realise that the ‘bad’ fruit they are talking about is fruit juice with added sugar that comes in a packet NOT a piece of fruit.

      • KiddVicious says:

        No, no allergies. Just an over achieving pancreas. I do get a sugar high from eating fruit, then a sugar crash and nap, and headachy and very grumpy the rest of the day. And a sugar hangover the next morning. I do miss fruit, but if I’m going to go through that I’d rather have a Snickers bar.

        And everything you said about fiber, vitamins/minerals in fruit slowing the impact of sugar, I agree with, but that’s with someone with a normal metabolism. I was vegan for two years and gained 80 lbs eating fruit and veggies and “healthy” grains. I also got high blood pressure and high cholesterol, and I became estrogen dominant and started losing my hair. If I hadn’t been talked into low-carb by my doctor (I honestly thought I would die if I ate saturated fat, but was willing to give it a try since I wasn’t doing so well anyway) I would probably be on all sorts of medications. Or dead. Those are my doctor’s words. I’ve been Keto for over 20 years now and blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugars, hormones are better than perfect. And I never get sick. I also went through menopause without any hot flashes or other side effects.

        Some people can do the plant based diet, others can’t. I’ve seen people get sick on one and thrive on another. I’m not saying there’s only ONE way to eat that’s healthy. My problem is other people deciding what is healthy for someone else. If someone says they can’t eat carbs, then believe them. I’m sure they’ve figured out they feel better without them and don’t need someone else dictating what they’re supposed to eat or how their body is supposed to react to what they’re eating. Believe me, if I could eat fruit or artisanal breads, I would, but I can’t. I’m fine with that. I like the way I feel without much better than how I feel when I do eat them. I like my lean muscles that I don’t workout that hard for and I like my energy through the roof.

  2. Esmom says:

    I pretty much co-sign everything she says, especially the part about how important working out is to my mental health. I also have always eaten a lot of carbs and it hasn’t caused weight gain. I do seem to crave protein more these days, so I make sure to indulge that with plant based stuff since I don’t eat meat. Everyone’s different, though…

  3. detritus says:

    By carbs, I bet she means quinoa or an apple.
    She’s not eating pizza, notice she said if she doesn’t eat carbs she craves pizza. Not I eat pizza in moderation.
    The major difference is this mag focuses solely on the package. Triathalon focuses on the performance. Such a crucial difference and it means everything for how you view your body.

    • fgh says:

      So what? These are carbs.

      • detritus says:

        my pet peeve is when people who eat very restricted try to pretend it is not so.
        carbs in laymans terms are more refined products, or at least majorly grain based. She’s factually correct, but misleading on purpose.

      • Bridget says:

        The author made an immediate connection to “candy and sugar” for carbs, though. And indeed, Julianne is likely eating whole grains when she talks about carbs, not a candy bar.

  4. Sarah says:

    I wish more women had this mentality. Fad diets and Atkins never work long term. Paired with light to moderate exercise 3-5 times a week, there’s nothing wrong with carbs. What’s wrong with a chicken breast, some broccoli rice and a small dinner roll, followed by some fruit and/or a glass of wine? *shrugs*

    • Original T.C. says:

      I think it’s because most women are not athletes like her. She started out life as a dancer, you lose so many calories in the day particing that you have to have some carbs in your diet to maintain your energy level. Mentally you grow up thinking exercise first, diet last in terms of controlling your weight. Most American women who are not athletes go to diet first and excercise last.

  5. Lin says:

    Losing weight and living healthy is so much less complicated than it has been made out to be in the past. It’s not rocket science, and I am soooo glad that the media is starting to reflect that. A person doesn’t need to spend money on crazy equipment, gadgets or complicated diets. Carry a bottle of water with you, go for walks and easy on the junk food. Done.

  6. Anon says:

    I eat carbs with pretty much every meal. I weigh 105 pounds and I’ve always been thin. I just make sure I don’t go over on overall calories and I don’t gain weight. It’s not unusual for me to eat pizza for dinner, but I eat two slices, not five. I find it so much easier to not deprive myself of any particular food group. I know it doesn’t work for everyone, though, because for some people it has to be all or nothing instead of moderation. I guess I’m lucky in the sense that I can stop myself after a couple of slices.

  7. DiamondGirl says:

    She forgot to mention that her smoking helps her not eat.

    (There are pics of her smoking as she leaves the gym.)

  8. JA says:

    ^^ when they write articles on “healthy” celebs who have abs to die for but smoke regularly. Yea I’m sure slowly killing her lungs and breathing abilities are real healthy! But hey look at her abs and lack of personality…

  9. Regina.phalange says:

    Ugh these are so redundant! They all say the same sh*t. Yawwwwwwwwwwwwn.

  10. Pumpkin Pie says:

    I came to the conclusion that when “celebrities” talk about carbs, they mean starches.

    I will make my fancy-sh savory crêpes this weekend, will fill them with mince and mushrooms, and drown them in butter, cream n cheese sauce. Super carbs/starch fest. Hallelujah!

  11. UmYeah says:

    So Hough eats no vegetables, fruit or whole grains? That sounds like the LRD diet my gastroenterologist put me on except I can have white bread instead of whole grain wheat bread and my vegetables and fruit choices are very very limited and they have to be cooked to mush.

    Um yeah vegetables, fruits and whole grains are carbohydrates. Comically many people who claim not to eat any carbs don’t know that that steamed broccoli and organic apple are carbohydrates.


  12. Mash says:

    Found this: http://people.com/bodies/julianne-hough-food-diary/
    If that works for her, great – god bless, but it doesnt really sound like much food