Since her Sister, Sister days, Tamera Mowry-Housley has been BUSY. From co-hosting the talk show The Real to raising a family, she’s pretty much mastered the balancing act, both when it comes to hectic schedules and the food she puts on her plate.
Of course, as with managing her acting career, marriage, and role as a mama, striking the right balance when it came to her diet took some trial and error. “I went through phases of trying this diet and that,” Tamera tells Women’s Health. “I thought eating healthy meant just salad with cucumbers, carrots, and tomatoes, but that wasn’t sustainable. Then I tried fad diets like the Atkins diet and they weren’t sustainable.”
For Tamera, who describes herself as a foodie, the solution was to nix the dieting mentality and focus on nourishing herself. “I learned that food really is medicinal,” she says. “I believe in the 80/20 rule and feel like I’m living my best life when I eat well. I think of it as loving on myself.”
Now that she’s found the balance that works for her (which involves plenty of vegetables, but wine, too), Tamera says she feels better at age 42 than ever—and that eating for health has improved everything from her mood to her cholesterol.
So what does this busy mom and star eat to feel like she can conquer the world? Hint: Lots of snacks.
Before whipping up a morning meal, Tamera always starts her day with water—and a cup of coffee. “I do drink coffee, but I’m trying to not drink so much of it because I think too much of a good thing can be a bad thing because it’s very acidic,” she explains.
Another pre-breakfast must: movement. “I love to stretch,” Tamera says. “I’ve learned the importance of stretching in the morning and at night, so though I don’t do it every day, I strive to because I’ve realized that even five minutes really aligns you.”
Next up, it’s time to eat—usually eggs. “I start my day with some scrambled eggs. I love putting chives in there. Sometimes I’ll add a little bit of a milk alternative or milk to make them fluffy.” (Tamera tried to go vegan once, but she missed eggs too much.) She pairs her scramble with gluten-free toast and an apple. “I always have an apple a day,” she says. “My children are made up of apples.”
Most days, Tamera squeezes in a light snack between breakfast and lunch.
One of her faves: a coconut yogurt with granola, berries, and a little bit of honey. Otherwise, she goes for umami-packed seaweed snacks. “My cousin always makes fun of me, but I love seaweed. So good,” she says.
Come midday, Tamera keeps it simple. “For lunch, I have salad,” she says. “Not like chicken salad with mayo, but like a salad with grilled chicken and loads of vegetables.” Tamera squeezes as much fiber into her salad bowls as possible to make sure they’re super filling.
Tamera usually needs to munch on something before dinner, so she’ll grab a handful of mixed nuts to tide her over. “It’s such good, healthy fat,” she says. “People sometimes think of fat as bad, but avocados, nuts, and nut butter are so good.” She’s also got a soft spot for almond butter with a little honey on top should her sweet tooth come calling.
Need some snack inspo? Watch Snooki taste-test all sorts of pickle-flavored eats:
Another of Tamera’s go-to’s is popcorn made with olive oil and seasoned with a little salt and pepper. Super simple and oh-so good.
For dinner, Tamera and her family typically eat some combination of protein, vegetables, and wholesome carbs.
“It’s often chicken, steak, or fish,” she says. Tamera also tries to mix up the veggies. “Green beans are a staple in our household, but I’ve done them in so many different ways,” she explains. (The Mowry-Housley crew relies on frozen options like Birds Eye to get veggies on the table in a flash.) “I’ve done mushroom green beans, red chili green beans, I’m always trying something new.”
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And when it comes to those carbs, the fam rotates through favorites like potatoes, rice, and sweet potatoes.
Drinks & Dessert
For Tamera, a big part of ~balance~ means treating herself.
“Everyone who knows me knows that wine is my favorite drink so thank God red wine is healthy for you,” she says. “I have at least two glasses a week. It’s my reward for the week,like saying ‘you survived, you did it, mama.'” For Tamera, wine plus Netflix is a recipe for an ideal evening (she’s obsessed with The Queen’s Gambit right now), so I think we just became best friends.
Throw a few good bedtime snacks in there and you’ve got straight perfection. “I like white cheddar popcorn, potato chips, and chocolate-covered almonds,” Tamera shares. Her absolute number-one treat, though: a warm, chewy chocolate chip cookie.
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