Lea Michele Talks Eating Healthy and Listening to Her Body

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As an actress and singer, Lea Michele has gone through lots of phases with her health and how she handles body image issues. But, now as a 30-year-old woman, Michele says it’s all about acceptance and paying attention.

As I get older, my body is always changing,” she told Shape magazine for their November issue. “Right now I have so much energy, my skin looks good, and my butt is higher than it’s ever been. I’ve been skinnier and I’ve been a little bit bigger, and I’m never hard on myself one way or the other. The fact that I’m active, eating well, and taking care of myself is all that matters—not a number.”

Like her perspective on her figure, the performer also said her diet is always evolving and getting refined as she discovers what works best for her.

“I was vegan for a while, I was vegetarian for 10 years, and now I’ve incorporated meat back into my diet,” Michele continued. “I eat as healthy as possible because I know food fuels me. I usually start my day with avocado toast or a green smoothie. I love a big salad for lunch; I’m always concocting recipes like kale Caesar or spinach artichoke salad. For dinner I’m flexible. If I’m going out and I want a bowl of pasta, I’ll eat it. I’m not hard on myself.”

Lea Michele Poses for Shape
CREDIT: Don Flood/Shape Magazine

And when it comes to rewarding herself with a tasty treat, Michele passes up the sweet stuff for another indulgence: cheese!

“My favorite is pizza. And mac and cheese. And grilled cheese. Anything with cheese. For dessert, I’ll usually order a cheese plate rather than something sweet. I’d eat an entire block of Wisconsin cheddar over chocolate cake any day.”

The actress added that the key to looking after her health is largely listening to what her body is telling her.

“If I have one of those days when I don’t want to work out, I ask myself why. I’ve learned how to listen to my body and know what I need in that moment,” she said. “And I’m grateful for that. It took me a very long time to get to this place. Now I can tell when my body is saying to take a break from working out, or when it’s saying, ‘No, you’re being a little lazy,’ so that I can push myself to get going.”

Head over to Shape to see Michele on the set of the issue’s beach-themed photo shoot!