As a busy working mom of three boys under three, Zoe Saldaña makes sure taking care of herself is a top priority. For Saldaña, that doesn’t mean spending hours at the gym, instead she focuses on putting the right foods in her body. “I can’t work out regularly, so I compensate by eating a lot healthier than I might otherwise,” she told Shape magazine.
For the June cover star and her family, eating healthy is all about clean eating. She suffers from a condition called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and has to be very conscious about her food choices. (She eats gluten and dairy-free products). “It’s not that I like to eat super light, just super clean. I like food that is fresh. I don’t go for things that come in can—and I’m losing trust in things that come in plastic. And we’re starting to move in the direction of becoming a vegetarian family.”
This type of conscious consumption reminds Saldaña of her days living in the Dominican Republic, where she says food was “much healthier.” “I remember what eating was like when my grandma would pick herbs from her garden and we’d get seafood that had been caught that morning.”
Saldaña hopes that her clean eating journey will serve as encouragement for the Latino community to make smarter, healthier choices. “I’d like to be a voice of inspiration for my Latino community, as underage diabetes and high blood pressure are on the rise.” The sad reality is, eating healthier can often mean spending more at the grocery store, but if people look at the pricier food as an investment in themselves, the reward will pay off. And as Saldaña suggests, “if I have to pay more to eat better, then I’ll just balance my checkbook better.”